The planned community of Boulder City was built in the 1930s to house the workers who built the Hoover Dam – the massive structure that tamed the Colorado River – and to power Sin City's glittering lights. Casinos were outlawed here at the time, to prevent distractions from the workers' monumental task, and to this day, remain absent: Boulder City is the only Nevada town sans casino. If you simply can't stand the serenity, it's only a few miles to Henderson for a gambling fix.
The city's charming historic downtown is replete with antique shops, sellers of Southwestern kitsch and grassy, tree-lined parks, which frequently host weekend art festivals, fetes and even classic car jamborees.
Lovers of art-deco architecture will also feel right at home here: Boulder is the best small-town Americana section of the greater Las Vegas region by far.