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We enjoy a lost weekend of over-consumption as well as the next person. But increasingly we’re attracted to getaways without a hangover--and we’re looking to nearby Las Vegas with fresh eyes.

First, we’ll get up early for the new River Mountains Trail, a peaceful yet challenging 35-mile bike ride around scenic mountains in the Lake Mead National Recreation Area. For $40 at All Mountain Cyclery, you can get a mountain bike for the day.

That night, instead of thinning our wallets at the gaming tables, we’ll expand our waistlines at Twist by Pierre Gagnaire at the Mandarin Oriental, one of the rare hotels on the Strip without a clattering lobby casino. The three-star Michelin restaurant has a new chef de cuisine, Ryuki Kawasaki, whose seasonal menu includes Colorado lamb and dill-vodka-lime granité. Then we’ll retire to our room--perhaps springing for the Adam Tihany-designed Taipan suite with its own Technogym.

The next day, after lounging at the rooftop pool, we’ll take in a performance at the just-opened Smith Center for the Performing Arts, a repurposed railroad switchyard transformed with glittering marble and original artwork to host everything from Broadway to the Las Vegas Philharmonic.

Who knew we could come home from Las Vegas richer for the experience?

Mandarin Oriental, 3752 Las Vegas Blvd. S., Las Vegas; 702-590-8888 or

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