Anyone spending the holidays in Reno is likely to be trying their Christmas luck on the card tables and slot machines. They needn't go far for their obligatory ham dinner, either, because many of the best restaurants in Reno and Sparks are located inside casinos (where else?). From all-you-can-eat buffets of homestyle staples to chic, impeccably styled plates, this city has a range of Christmas Day dinner options—even a few to take home. Keep in mind that dress codes may be enforced for the special occasion. It's always a good idea to make holiday reservations far in advance.
Atlantis Hotel Resort Spa
The Atlantis will be offering an array of Christmas Day dining opportunities in 2020: a champagne brunch and Christmas dinner buffet at Toucan Charlie's, a four-course carnivorous feast at Atlantis Steakhouse, four courses of seafood at Bistro Napa, a no-frills filet mignon dinner at Manhattan Deli, and a three-course turkey or lamb chop dinner at Purple Parrot. Bistro Napa and Atlantis Steakhouse are both upscale restaurants—casual attire is discouraged—whose Christmas Day feasts cost between $68 and $80 apiece. However, the others range from $26 to $60.
Nugget Casino Resort
In nearby Sparks, the Nugget Casino Resort's nautically themed Oyster Bar and tropical Island Grill remains open on Christmas Day, but only Anthony's Chophouse and Rosie's Café will offer special menus for the holiday. The former features your choice of prime rib, duck two ways, or maple-glazed Atlantic salmon, followed by eggnog bread pudding for dessert. The latter features prime rib or striped sea bass and peppermint dark chocolate silk pie for dessert. Anthony's costs $59 per person and Rosie's costs $13.99 for kids under 11 and $23.99 per adult.
Ruth's Chris Steakhouse
Not located in a casino, the famous chain Ruth's Chris remains open on Christmas Day, serving a special holiday surf and turf menu which includes a sizzling filet of one of its famous steaks alongside twin cold-water lobster tails. In 2020, diners are also welcome to take home the $180 feast for four, or order from the regular dinner menu. Ruth's Chris enforces a dress code (no sportswear allowed), and is conveniently located on The Row in the heart of Reno, near the casinos Eldorado, Circus Circus, and Silver Legacy.
Peppermill Resort Spa Casino
Five restaurants at Peppermill Reno have special Christmas menus in 2020. The cheapest option is the $32 Christmas brunch at Cafe Milano (the price goes up to $55 when it switches to dinner at 4 p.m.). Both Bimini Steakhouse and Romanza will offer pre-fixe dinners for $75 per person, while Biscotti's and Oceano will both offer three-course dinners for the mid-level price of $60 per person. Reservations are not required.
Western Village Inn & Casino
The Steakhouse and Pancho & Willie's will remain open at Western Village Inn & Casino in Sparks. The former will serve pan-roasted maple-leaf duck breast or Christmas cioppino (stew) followed by a festive eggnog panna cotta for $64 per person. The latter will put a Mexican spin on Christmas classics by braising short ribs in chili and crusting halibut with Tajin, and offering a unique cranberry take on upside-down cake—all for $42 per person.
Grand Sierra Resort
Four restaurants at Reno's Grand Sierra Resort will offer special holiday menus. For just $29 per person, the street taco eatery Uno Mas will offer caldo de res (Mexican beef soup), sabana de pollo (pounded chicken breast), and Mexican hot chocolate. For something more traditional, Charlie Palmer Steak will be serving up a Hidden Valley honey-glazed ham dinner, and Grand Café will offer a Land & Sea Christmas special. Rim Pan-Asian Bistro will serve sweet corn soup, roasted duck, sweet and sour shrimp, Peking steak filet, and stir fry cod.
Washoe Public House
For a carryout option, opt for Washoe Public House's Christmas Eve dinner to-go. The $200 meal, consisting of prime rib roast, garlic mashed potatoes, roasted root vegetables, Brussels sprouts salad, and—for $15 extra—a bottle of wine, feeds up to six people. Orders must be placed before noon on December 21, 2020.