Resorts World Las Vegas Gets Nod to Connect to Tesla-Powered Tunnel

Resorts World Las Vegas
Resorts World Las Vegas has received approval from the Clark County Commission to move forward with its plans to build an underground passenger station and tunnel.

The tunnel will connect the resort to the Las Vegas Convention Center using Elon Musk’s innovative Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC) Loop station. This project will transport passengers from the new integrated resort to the LVCC campus in under two minutes via Tesla Model X, Model 3, and modified Model 3 for 16 passengers.

Said Resorts World Las Vegas president Scott Sibella in a press conference:

“We are thrilled to receive approval from the County Commission to move forward with our proposed passenger station and tunnel and are eager to take the next steps in creating an innovative transportation solution for our convention guests and visitors.”

The LVCC Loop

The LVCC Loop is located directly below the Las Vegas Convention Center. Upon its completion in January 2021, it is expected to ferry more than 4,400 passengers per hour from the West Hall to the South and North Halls (and vice versa). The $52.5M project will cut the 15-minute trip across the convention center campus to just one friction-less minute via Tesla’s electric cars.

With the approval to add Resorts World Las Vegas as a stop in the transport system, guests and gamblers will be given direct access to the resort’s hotel, casino, and nightlife offerings. It will also offer travelers a convenient entry to the Las Vegas Strip. Additional details about the Resorts World tunnel will be revealed by the company in the coming months.

Resorts World Las Vegas To Open Next Summer

It can be recalled that both Resorts World Last Vegas and Wynn Las Vegas announced earlier this year that they would file an application for a tunnel and passenger station underneath their respective hotel-resorts. In early June, Resorts World Las Vegas submitted land-use applications and design plans to the Commission. With the approval, it is expected that construction will start by the end of the year.

Resorts World Las Vegas is still on target to open its doors to the public in the summer of 2021. The ongoing $4.3B project will 3,500 Hilton, LXR, and Conrad rooms plus a 117,000 square foot casino with slot machines, table games, private rooms, a poker room, and high-limit areas. A massive Entertainment Zone will include a race and sportsbook plus the integrated resort will have an extensive food and beverage portfolio. Resorts World Las Vegas will also have a 220,000 square foot pool complex that includes a 1,800 square feet infinity pool.

Resorts World Las Vegas Partners with AEG for New Entertainment Venue

Entertainment Venue InteriorResorts World is one of Las Vegas’ exciting new resorts to come, alongside downtown LV’s Circa Resort. The two mega properties were in construction long before the infamous COVID-19 pandemic hit, and thankfully, construction is still going strong with their completion dates on target.

The future is still bright for Las Vegas entertainment, and Resorts World is making sure it’s going to have a giant slice of that pie.

Resorts World Las Vegas just announced that they will be welcoming a new, state-of-the-art entertainment venue within its walls, called “The Theatre.”

In a partnership with AEG, the new entertainment venue will be exclusively programmed and operated by Concerts West, which is a division of AEG presents.

In an exclusive interview with Billboard, Scott Sibella, president of Resorts World Las Vegas, and John Meglen, president and co-CEO of Concerts West said that The Theatre is going to “redefine the Las Vegas residency, reimagine the theatrical experience on the Strip and recast how artists create their shows.”

Sibella said Resorts World was looking for the right partnership and found that with AEG, since AEG is a veteran when it comes to the Las Vegas entertainment scene, especially when it comes to booking touring acts and residencies.

“The Theatre”: A State-of-the-Art Theatre Unlike Any Other Vegas Venue

Although Las Vegas stages and stages around the world have gone dark for the past few months, come summer 2021, that should hopefully change with Resorts World’s exciting new addition to the Vegas Strip: The Theatre.

The 5000-capacity theatre, which is being designed by Scéno Plus, will feature innovative staging and advanced technology laced throughout. Tailored to the A-list performers who will be gracing the stage, there will be VIP amenities for them all afloat.

The stage will be among one of the largest on the Strip, with dimensions of 64-feet deep by 196-feet wide, altogether making up a whopping 13,550 square feet.

Before concert-goers even feast their eyes on the venue’s massive size, they’ll be greeted by a dazzling 65-foot custom chandelier dangling inside of The Threatre’s four-story lobby, which will be decorated in hues of black and champagne.

The Theatre will also feature a multi-dimensional surround sound experience, with an audio system containing 265 speakers.

5,000 square feet of LED screens will also allow artists to display their content in a loud way.

VIP guests will get the VIP in the new concert venue, with their very own entrance, two private salons featuring lounge seating and full-service bars.

Who Will the Entertainment Lineup Include?

According to Sibella, the entertainment lineup that the new concert will feature will be as varied as the concert-goers themselves, from legendary acts to current chart-toppers.

Meglen with AEG is designing the venue to appeal to every artist in town. Meglen hopes they’ll look at the venue and ask themselves why they’re not playing there. According to Meglen, artists need the right tools, crews, and atmosphere to perform at their best. He wants the artist’s entire organization to look around The Theatre and think it’s the greatest place they’ve ever played.

Meglen has A-list experience, too. Formerly, he partnered with AEG svp John Nelson and Caesars Palace to create the famed Colosseum. The Colosseum, as you may know, has been home to superstar residencies for years, including Celine Dion, Mariah Carey, and Shania Twain.

Live Entertainment Still on Hold in Vegas

With Nevada’s current COVID-19 cases topping 30,000, the state will likely be in phase two of its reopening plan for a while longer. Most recently, Gov. Steve Sisolak rolled bars back to their phase one standards for reopening, causing any bar that strictly only serves alcohol to shut back down until further notice.

So of course, the elephant in Vegas’ room is that live entertainment is still shelved and won’t be able to make its debut until the Silver State reaches phase four of its recovery plan, and it’s unsure how long that will be.

Sibella says that despite live entertainment being on hold, at some point something has to give.

“There’s not a point that we’re not going to open, but you have to remember these buildings aren’t built for 50% occupancy,” Sibella says “You don’t build a theater and then all of a sudden say, ‘we only want 2,000 people in there—every other seat.’”

Sibella says the current occupancy caps could very well ruin the economic model and energy of the program. He says that things need to get better soon, or that properties on the Strip need to relook at their models and come up with a solution in how to better operate these massive buildings.

He’s hopeful that things will return to normalcy by mid-2021, and that the non-gaming revenue aspect will continue to grow. Sibella believes music fans will be leading the charge to that specific economy since they’ll be after these singular, concert experiences that the city offers so well.

Other Resorts World Updates

A few weeks ago, the 3,500-room, $4.3 billion, 88-acre luxury resort featuring three Hilton brands, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, LXR, and Conrad, unveiled their guestrooms designs for the Hilton and Conrad hotels in the complex.

The resort’s 550-square-foot premium king and queen rooms will feature bright color scheme a mix of patterns and textures, including contrasting metal and organic, earthy elements.

The design, which was imagined by KNA Design, features the theme of luxury geometric “fluidity.” The theme is evident in the wave-patterned, mixed-blue carpet and drapery, with gold accents across the room’s private bar.

The glass walk-in shower also ties into the theme, adding a contemporary aesthetic and essence to the overall look.

And just last week on Independence Day, Resorts World Las Vegas activated its 100,000-square-foot LED screen for the first time, displaying digital fireworks to onlookers.

The activation was a glimpse into the progressive technology with features in the future when it opens its doors in the summer of 2021.

The 294 feet by 340 feet LED screen is on the resort’s west tower, and there are plans to have a 19,000-square-foot LED screen on its east tower in time. The time it took to complete the west tower’s LED screen was approximately seven months.

Despite the current coronavirus climate, Resorts World Las Vegas is still on track to be completed by the summer of 2021.

Sibella said that the resort isn’t just going to be the newest Strip resort, but the first serious foothold in America by Genting Group.

About Resorts World Las Vegas

The new $4.3 billion next-generation integrated resort is the first resort to be built from the ground up in Las Vegas in almost a decade.

According to the company, the resort is being designed to appeal to a wide variety of both domestic and international tourists, with luxury and modernization at its core.

The casino gaming floor will feature 117,000 square feet of gaming, including slots, table games, a designated poker room, and high-limit areas and more.

The property will offer an array of food and beverage, with dining options ranging from authentic street food to Michelin-starred dining, as well as concepts that will be brand new to the Las Vegas Strip.

Shopping will also be available on the resort, featuring a curated luxury retail collection to tie into the resort’s essence of luxury and modern sensibility.

Resorts World will offer 350,000 square feet of flexible meeting space and banquet space.

There will also be a world-class spa and fitness facility available. The resort will have a 222,000-square-foot pool complex, including a 1,800-square-foot infinity pool offering dazzling views of the Las Vegas Strip.

Nightlight concept will also be available, featuring 65,000 square feet of nightlife and entertainment space.

About AEG Presents

AEG Presents is the live-entertainment division of the Los Angeles-based AEG. AEG Presents features various aspects of live contemporary music performances.

They operate in North America, Europe, and Asia, with 16 regional offices.

The company produces over 25 music festivals and hosts over 15,000 shows annually.

What’s Opened and Closed in Las Vegas Today?

Paris Hotel and Bellagio Resort on Las Vegas StripOver a month ago, Las Vegas casinos were given the green light to reopen its door to guests and employees on June 4. But, only a handful of casinos reopened to start, with other Strip resorts choosing to wait it out to while they examine the lay of the land in the age of reopening during the coronavirus pandemic.

MGM Resorts International and Caesars Entertainment, the largest two casino operators in the Vegas Valley, were the first to get a few of their properties on board initially.

Among the properties which have since seen the light of day from those operators after a near three-month shutdown are The Bellagio, New York-New York, MGM Grand, Caesars Palace, Flamingo, Harrah’s, Linq Promenade, and Paris Las Vegas.

Next up from Caesars Entertainment to reopen will be Bally’s Las Vegas, set to reopen July 23 with nearly all of its amenities open to the public. It will be the fifth Caesars property to reopen.

Las Vegas is in an interesting conundrum at the current moment. It’s seeing an increased demand in customer visitation and interest, especially with Summer in full effect and popular holidays here like the most recent 4th of July weekend, but the Silver State, along with the rest of the country, is seeing a large uptick of COVID-19 cases, and that’s forcing the city to move differently.

A lot is changing in Las Vegas to stay compliant with COVID-19 safety protocols. Just recently, casino owners are taking a serious look into changing their smoking policies.

To date, there are 23 resorts on the Las Vegas Strip that have reopened. Let’s take a look at what has opened up and closed in the famed destination this week.

Resorts Reopening, While Other Resorts Are Limiting Reservations

On Wednesday, July 1, Aria, Delano, Mandalay Bay, and Waldorf Astoria welcomed back guests in good timing, just ahead of the 4th of July weekend. The Luxor and Westgate also opened the week prior.

Caesars CEO Tony Rodio said that the decision to reopen Bally’s Las Vegas came out of seeing the heightened customer demand in visiting Las Vegas this summer.

While it’s great to see more Las Vegas resorts reopening, the city seems to be pulled in opposite directions based on the current trajectory of the virus outbreak.

According to Las Vegas-based Union Gaming analyst John DeCree, the customer demand signals are mixed and could very well remain that way for some time. DeCree explains that Vegas is mostly dependent on drive-in visitation and gaming customers, which typically make up the midweek group of business.

DeCree says that if those big groups of customers are more hesitant to come into town, that the majority of that business will be much harder to come by.

Las Vegas’ convention industry is the driving force behind the city’s midweek hotel occupancy, but with that industry down, that’s another hit to midweek numbers. Experts predict that the convention industry will take anywhere between 18 and 36 months to bounce back, much longer than the travel’s leisure industry.

Resorts Begin Limiting Reservations

With the Governor cracking down on stricter safety protocols amid the rise of coronavirus cases, resorts are taking note, with some resorts limiting weekday reservations to meet the demand of weekend travelers for the summer.

Las Vegas Sands announced last Saturday that their properties would no longer be accepting reservations on weekdays, starting July 21. The company stated the move was to be able to better reflect occupancy patterns, as a direct response to travel demand for the summer season.

The Palazzo, for example, will be closing certain hotel towers and venues, such as some of their restaurants and resort pool, midweek when the occupancy rates are much lower, and reopening them on the weekends to be available for increased customer visitation and demand.

Weekday Demand vs Weekend Demand

While the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority hasn’t released updated visitation numbers since the city’s casinos reopened on June 4, the number of casinos, and the rate to which they have opened, are an indication of the increased customer visitation and interest.

According to Brendan Bussmann, director of government affairs for Las Vegas-based Global Market Advisors, the city’s weekend traffic is a positive sign that Las Vegas is in a period of recovery, especially as additional properties reopen and increased air travel to Sin City.

Mandatory Mask Policy in Nevada

On June 26, mask usage became a requirement for all casino guests in Nevada. Before that, it was strongly encouraged, but not mandatory. It has been mandatory for all casino staff since reopening on June 4, however.

Masks are now a requirement for nearly all public space in the Silver State as of today.

In casinos, all individuals must wear a mask while on property and playing, except for whenever eating or drinking.

What’s All Open in Vegas?

Nobu, the hotel within Caesars Palace, recently reopened on July 2.

The Shoppes at Mandalay Place also reopened alongside the Luxor, as well as the Shark Reef Aquarium. At the Luxor, the HyperX Esports Arena, an arena for esports gamers, also opened, as well as many of Luxor’s restaurants and bars, such as Diablo’s Cantina and Pyramid Café.

Speaking of restaurants, Aria reopened its famed Catch, Jean Georges Steakhouse, and Salt & Ivy dining experiences.

At Waldorf Astoria, Zen Café reopened and so did the popular Skybar on the properties 23rd floor, which offers sweeping views of the Las Vegas Strip. Skybar also offers small bites, which allows it to stay open during the latest closure of Las Vegas bars.

On Thursday, the Fly Linq at Linq Promenade will allow visitors to begin soaring again, as well as the Eiffel Tower at Paris Las Vegas. At the Paris, its popular Gordon Ramsay Steak and Eiffel Tower Restaurant reopened, that give amazing views of the Fountains of Bellagio located across the street.

Two popular Las Vegas day clubs also opened ahead of Independence Day; Liquid Pool Lounge at Aria and Wet Republic Ultra Pool at MGM Grand. Per reservation, the day clubs will be open  Thursdays through Sundays right now.

At the Cosmpolitan, their adults-only pool, Marquee, has reopened from 11 a.m. through sunset on Fridays through Sundays, with reservations required. Guests at the pool will be able to enjoy

At the Wynn, they’ve opened up their new restaurant Elio for a summer preview. The new restaurant will be serving up contemporary Mexican dishes.

What’s interesting is that the Wynn also opened up their buffet, but it came with a lot of changes due to coronavirus safety protocols. It’s not the normal long tables full of hot food where you can serve yourself. No, instead diners are required to stay at their tables and order as much food as they can handle from a server.

Bellagio’s Spago by Wolfgang Puck has also reopened from 5 to 10 p.m., Friday through Tuesday.

Topgolf, located near MGM Grand, is now open and ready to serve up some non-gaming fun to patrons.

Half of the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood have also reopened to the public, with limited hours. The adjoining Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino is still closed as of today.

And Harrah’s is getting their first performer back, Vegas’ renowned Big Elvis, a.k.a. Pete Vallee.

Downtown, the Neon Museum has reopened to a limited number of visitors, and the Mob Museum has also reopened, doing temperature checks on its guests at the door.

Bars Close Back Down

On last week’s state address, Gov. Steve Sisolak made the announcement that bars were to shut their doors again on Friday, July 10, amid the rise of COVID-19 cases in the valley.

It was another tough blow for the hospitality industry, with Vegas seemingly on its way to reopening back to normal.

Many bar owners felt slighted by the news, saying that Sisolak was targeting this specific industry, with bar owners stating that they’ve been in compliance with social distancing and other safety protocols.

Under the governor’s latest order, it has called for seven Nevada counties to return to Phase 1 restrictions for bars. Those restrictions include any bar that doesn’t serve food must close back down, and bars that do serve food are only allowed to offer curbside pickup.

It also means that bar areas of restaurants are to remain closed, with no patrons sitting in that specific area.

Now, it looks like 37 bars in Southern Nevada have filed a lawsuit in an attempt to stop Gov. Sisolak’s shutdown order that’s targeting these specific drinking establishments.

The lawsuit explains that 80 percent of bars were in compliance with the social distancing orders as of July 3. While 39 businesses around Southern Nevada were cited for noncompliance from June 26 through July 10, none of those businesses were businesses that served alcohol.

Current Coronavirus Status in Clark County

As of this week, Nevada reported its highest number of daily hospitalizations on Tuesday with 1,051 confirmed/suspected cases reported.

The state has also exceeded 30,000 cases, according to data provided by the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The total number of current cases stands at 30,468, with 618 COVID-19 related deaths.

Nevada has been setting records for its COVID-19 trends over the past two weeks, with four of its five largest single-day increases being reported within that timeframe.

According to experts, as the capacity for more testing is made available, we can expect to see the state’s numbers climb even higher within the coming weeks.

As of Wednesday, over 457,522 tests have been administered in Nevada.

Stay Tuned

It’s hard to say what the coming weeks will look like in Las Vegas with the surge of COVID-19 cases.

We’re fortunate that casinos are remaining open, and hope that the shutdown of bars within the valley will help prevent the spread of the virus even further.

The Visit Las Vegas website is staying up-to-date on all government-ordered shutdowns and restrictions and is a good source for interested visitors who are planning to make the trip down soon.

We hope that everyone is continuing to social distance and wear masks out in public whenever possible, and staying safe!

Be sure to check back for more updates regarding the COVID-19 situation in Las Vegas.

Bally’s Las Vegas Will Reopen July 23 Amid Customer Demand

Bally's Hotel-Casino in Las VegasOn Thursday, Caesars Entertainment announced the next of its properties that will be opening: Bally’s Las Vegas, set to reopen on July 23 at 10 a.m.

So far, Caesars Entertainment has reopened the following Las Vegas properties: Caesars Palace, The Flamingo, Harrah’s, Linq Promenade, and Paris Las Vegas.

The announcement comes as the Las Vegas Strip has been seeing an increased demand in customer interest and visitation. Officially shuttered for 127 days, Bally’s will officially get to join the rest of the Caesars pack in welcoming long-forgone guests.

“We continue to see solid customer interest in visiting Las Vegas this summer and, as a result, we are pleased to announce the reopening of Bally’s Las Vegas – gaming, hotel, restaurants, and other amenities – on July 23rd,” said Tony Rodio, CEO of Caesars Entertainment said.

Rodio explained that instead of increasing the hotel occupancy at the other properties that have already reopened, it’s in the interest of public health to open up another property instead. Currently, reopened casinos are operating at 50 percent capacity.

According to the resort owner, when the casino-hotel opens later this month, it’s expected to have nearly all of its amenities available, including the Blu Pool and the Bally’s Food Court.

The recently opened Indigo Lounge is also expected to be open by then. The lounge overlooks the casino floor, but with Governor Sisolak’s Thursday announcement that bars will return to Phase One restrictions, it’s unsure whether it will be serving patrons unless food is part of the equation.

Las Vegas Tourists Seem Unfazed by Rise of COVID-19 Cases Among Hospitality Workers

COVID-19 cases are on the rise across the country, and casinos are not exempt.

So far, there have been at least 10 Strip casino workers that have tested positive for coronavirus: One worker at Bellagio, two Flamingo workers, a worker at The Linq, three workers at Sahara Las Vegas, two at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, and one at Caesars Palace.

But while these growing number of cases on the Las Vegas Strip may seem startling, Las Vegas travelers seem undeterred.

A handful of tourists who came for Fourth of July weekend even said they were aware of the number of growing cases of Las Vegas hospitality workers catching the virus, but that it didn’t put a dent in their travel plans.

Stay Tuned

It’s good to see that casinos are still continuing to open in Las Vegas, despite the increase of COVID-19 cases.

It was rumored this week that casinos might be shut down for 7-10 days, but thankfully that wasn’t the case in Gov. Sisolak’s address.

For now, it’s bars across the Silver State that have scaled back to their preexisting coronavirus restrictions. That means no patrons congregating in bars, bar areas, or having bars in restaurants opened for now.

Nevada piggybacked off similar restrictions made in Texas and California last week, and it seems like the rest of the country is following suit.

Are you excited for Bally’s to reopen? Have you made a trip to Las Vegas yet or are you a local who’s excited that some things are beginning to resemble “normal” Vegas? Share with us in the comments below!

And be sure to check back for more coronavirus updates in Las Vegas.

Cashless Gaming Systems Coming to Las Vegas Casinos

Cashless Gaming System on Table GameOn Thursday, the Nevada Gaming Commission made the first steps toward elevating financial transactions to the digital realm in casinos. The commission approved of eight amendments to current standing regulations on cashless gaming systems.

Industry leaders think that the new gaming system rules could change casino procedures in the same way that “ticket in-ticket out” technology did when it was first introduced in the 1990s.

The amendments made Thursday are effective immediately. The move might see a variety of new systems produced for casinos that would enable casino guests to easily move their money from their bank accounts through the use of debit cards or prepaid debit cards, and over to slot machines and table games.

Gaming Control Board Chairwoman Sandra Morgan has been a long advocate for more cashless solutions in casinos, and believes that the new technology would do wonders at attracting new customers, but also be beneficial to the industry by creating a space for more responsible gaming measures.

Morgan earlier this year said that requests to introduce cashless technology have slowed over the past nine months, but it seems that the current coronavirus pandemic we’ve been living through in the US over the past few months has pushed cashless gaming systems back into the limelight.

In fact, Brendan Bussmann, a gaming industry consultant and partner with Global Market Advisors, said that the nationwide shutdown of casinos back in mid-March

Sights on Clean Technology Spurred by COVID-19 Outbreak

Spurred by the COVID-19 outbreak gaining much more traction now. With high-touch surfaces being something that the virus can live on several days, it’s caused a lot of people to be more cautious with handling cash in the meantime.

Companies are now looking to clean technology to replace germy cash, with this being the driving force behind the commission’s speedier amendment approval.

According to medical experts, consumers should be cautious with what they do with their hands when handling a wad of cash or making a withdrawal from the ATM.

Dr. Ellen Foxman, an assistant professor in Yale’s Department of Laboratory Medicine, advised that the virus can stay on surfaces for several days on things you touch, including cash.

Now, several different casino companies are beginning to join forces with the cashless gaming systems that were approved for licensing by commissioners, including Everi Holdings, IGT, Scientific Games, and NRT Technology Corp.

While many consumers are concerned with how contaminated dollar bills might actually be right now, expects still advise that chances of being infected after handling cash is still low compared to other methods of potentially contracting the virus, such as person-to-person contact.

Mainly, COVID-19 spreads through droplets released into the air whenever a COVID-19 carrier coughs or sneezes, but also through the surfaces we come into contact with. Still, it makes the cash for utilizing digital financial transactions and wearing face masks and gloves while out in public stronger.

Cash in No Longer the #1 Payment Choice for Americans

In today’s digital age, it’s not a surprise that cash is no longer the preferred payment choice for American consumers. In fact, it’s only used in just one in four transactions. Debit card payment is now the preferred payment choice, even over credit cards for department store buys.

A study from the 2019 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice found that cash was the third most preferred payment method, and that the preference for cash has decreased over the last three years.

The share of cash use tends to be the highest among two specific groups: Younger age groups, among individuals 18 to 25-years-old, and individuals over the age of 45.

The coronavirus has turned, or urged rather, Americans to turn their attention to digital tools. This is evident in casinos utilizing mobile check-ins for their hotel stays, rather that face-to-face interaction with a front desk agent.

According to Christopher Justice, president of the gaming solutions division for Global Payments, a number of studies has found that a third of the population today is afraid to use cash because of the coronavirus.

With coronavirus taking out the industry in two weeks, Justice says we have to think differently about deploying different solutions. And it looks like different industries are doing that, from the gaming industry to the food industry.

Many restaurants are now using QR codes, typically set up near the host stand, that patrons who own a smartphone can use to scan and have the menu pop up onto their phone rather than providing them with a physical copy.

All of these things are being done in an effort to reduce physical contact in the age of COVID-19.

However, for some groups, such as low-income households, it may not be possible to avoid using cash, in the same way that it’s not possible to avoid touching a door handle. For those who typically use cash, the best prevention method for catching COVID-19 is thoroughly washing hands before eating or touching your face, according to Foxman.

Typical Cash-Use in Casinos

If you’ve ever stopped to really think about it, you’ll realize that most, if not all, gambling transactions are initiated through the use of cash.

Visitors coming to Las Vegas hoping to win big will either have a designated stockpile of cash to be used on table games or slot machines, or they will pull the money out of the casino ATM’s or head to the bank to pull out the funds necessary for their desired play.

In fact, only a small number of casinos throughout the country allow other methods of payment, including credit and debit cards, with some allowing PayPal, Apple, and Google pay.

AGEM Supports the Amendment Changes

Years ago, actually, Nevada outlawed direct credit card-use on a slot machine.

The reasoning? Mike Rumbolz, a former Control Board chairman and a CEO for both casino operators and manufacturers, said credit cards is one instrument that causes the most concern for people. Rumbolz explains that it’s gambling with money you don’t actually have, whereas a debit card is directly tied to a checking account.

In a letter to the commission board, Dan Reaser, an attorney for the Association of Gaming Equipment Manufacturers (AGEM), says that driving the gaming industry toward a cashless environment is bound to have profoundly positive impacts.

The letter was prefaced with the impact that ticket-in/ticket-out technologies made over a decade ago in the industry.

Reaser explains that the positive impacts will include enhanced legal compliance, improved public health, and safety, especially now with casinos reopened amid a global pandemic, more gaming operating efficiency, and more responsible gaming alternatives.

AGEM Executive Director Marcus Prater says these regulatory changes have to start somewhere, and that Nevada should be the one to take the lead on it to inspire the rest of the industry to follow suit.

A Closer Look into the Amendment Changes

The amendment approval covers two regulations directly concerning the electronic transfers of money to games or other gaming devices.

While the current regulations allow for customers to transfer money from a debit card to a gaming device, very few properties have licensed systems in place to do that legally or efficiently.

Other amendment changes include a daily monetary transfer limit, and displaying digital messages on messages that encourage responsible gaming, which will include the Nevada Council on Problem Gambling.

Gaming Commission Member Deborah Fuetsch says that by removing the prohibition of a cashless wagering system in approving these specific systems, is opening the door for new, more efficient, and responsible gaming technology.

Timeframe for Allowing Digital Payments on Casino Floors

Everything has a time and place for action, and for digital payments on the casino floor, it’s clear that COVID-19 has sped up that time and place to happen much sooner.

The American Gaming Association (AGA), the Washington, D.C.-based trade organization, announced a framework last week for when digital payments could be allowed on casino floors. They stated that the public demand for this type of cashless gaming system has increased most recently.

While the coronavirus pandemic has increased the public’s demand and interest for cashless gaming, the AGA was already leading an 18-month collaborative industry-wide effort to create a structure that would cover eight necessary principles for modernizing casino payments across the country.

Cashless Systems Would Include Cashless Sports Betting

Cashless systems will revolutionize casino payments entirely, which includes how wagers would be handled in sportsbooks as well.

The new system could potentially allow race and sports bettors to fund their mobile betting accounts through some sort of digital transfer, which would likely save them a trip to the casino.

Bussmann, a partner with Global Marketing Partners, said that for the most part, Nevada casinos have been reluctant to back mobile funding that could be done from home, in an effort to get customers onto gaming properties instead.

But, Bussman said that the pandemic allowed insight into how successful funding from home could be. He pointed that it’s been done successfully in New Jersey, and how the South Point casinos in Las Vegas and William Hill had to get creative during the shutdown in how bettors could fund their accounts.

Bussman believes there shouldn’t have to be a drive-thru system in place to fund customer accounts.

Stay Tuned

The commission approving these amendments seems promising for cashless gaming systems to arrive in Las Vegas casinos, and casinos nationwide, possibly by year-end.

It will still be a process to get the right digital systems in place, but with COVID-19 still around, momentum is moving quickly.

What do you think about Las Vegas casinos, or casinos anywhere for that matter, using cashless gaming systems?

Do you think it will be a more effective and responsible gaming solution? We’d love to hear your thoughts on the new technology below.

Be sure to check back for more updates regarding cashless gaming systems and Las Vegas coronavirus coverage.

Lucky Poker Player Wins $250k at Flamingo Las Vegas

Texas Hold'em Poker Game & CardsIt’s a good thing that casinos in Las Vegas have reopened because one lucky poker player just hit the jackpot of his life at the Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas.

According to a Flamingo spokesperson, the gambler hit the progressive jackpot playing Ultimate Texas Hold’em out on the casino floor Thursday night.

The gambler, who did not wish to be identified, was in an “excited state of shock” after his major win. His total jackpot came out to $254,844.

Other Big Wins Since Casinos Reopened

A day after Caesar’s Palace reopened on June 4, one guest won an incredible $670,637 progressive jackpot playing the Let it Ride poker game.

The guest also wished to remain anonymous.

Caesar’s Palace closure marked the first time the casino had ever been closed since it originally opened 54 years ago.

Slots players across the Las Vegas Strip are also making out since the city’s casinos have reopened. A guest won $57,000 playing a slot machine at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.

Another lucky gambler at Flamingo Hotel hit a $100,000 jackpot playing the Triple Red Hot slot machine.

And four days after Red Rock casino reopened, a gambler hit a near 10 grand jackpot on a panda slot machine.

Boyd Gaming Wins

Boyd Gaming has also welcomed back its Southern Nevada guests with rewarding nine jackpots of $10,000 or more.

In the month of June, over $154,000 in major jackpots have been won including:

  • A guest at Cannery Casino Hotel who won the $10,500 jackpot while playing the Dragon Link: Golden Century on June 7.
  • A guest at Gold Coast Hotel and Casino who hit a royal flush playing video poker, winning a $20,000 jackpot on June 15.
  • A guest at Suncoast Hotel and Casino who won a $40,000 jackpot playing Triple Triple Bonus Video Poker on June 17.
  • A guest at Aliante Casino + Hotel + Spa who won over $12,500 playing Dancing Drums on June 19.
  • The following day on June 20, another lucky guest at Aliante started their birthday off on the right note by hitting a $10,500 jackpot while playing the Drop & Lock machine. On the same day, another Aliante guest hit a jackpot over $10,000 while playing Four Card Keno.
  • A guest at Suncoast won a $10,000 jackpot on a Double Double Bonus Poker Machine on June 20.
  • A guest at Fremont Hotel and Casino won an over $30,000 jackpot playing Abundant Fortune.
  • Another guest at Suncoast won a jackpot close to $10,500 playing a Triple Double Bonus Poker machine.

New Mask Requirement for Casinos in Las Vegas

Three weeks after the COVID-19 shutdown was lifted, properties in Las Vegas began opening again, but not all at once. Caesars Entertain and MGM Resorts have a few selected properties reopening, including Caesars Palace, the Flamingo, Harrah’s, the Bellagio, New York-New York, and MGM Grand.

Beginning Friday, Governor Sisolak mandated that masks must be worn in all of Nevada’s public indoor spaces, which means in all casinos too. Masks are not a requirement after weeks where guests were encouraged, but not mandated, to wear them.

Casino visitors must keep their masks on except whenever eating or drinking. Since reopening, masks were always a requirement for casino staff.

The ruling went into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, following Gov. Sisolak’s new “No shirt. No shoes. No mask. No service” slogan that he announced on Wednesday. Social distancing protocols and other coronavirus safety protocols remain in effect.

Sisolak’s ruling comes on the heels of a similar mandate issued by California governor Gavin Newsom last week. Newsom’s ruling required that all reopened casinos and card rooms require guests and players to wear masks.

Now, visitors who enter Las Vegas casinos will be offered a face covering and will be turned away if they refuse to wear one.

Nevada joins several other states in seeing its COVID-19 cases rise, and we’re hoping that the new face mask mandate will stifle the curve.

Stay Tuned

We’re happy to see that gamblers can once again play to their heart’s content, and not only that but cash out in big ways.

It’s definitely what was needed after a long quarantine. We hope that this new mask requirement will allow players and casino guests to remain safe while casinos stay reopened.

Be sure to check back for more Las Vegas jackpot updates and news!

Circa Las Vegas to Be an ‘Adult-Only’ Casino When It Opens

Fremont Street ExperienceDowntown’s hottest new casino, the Circa Resort & Casino, will be an adult-only property when it opens this October.

The casino, which bumped up its opening date from December to Oct. 28, is making is creating a whole new “mystique” where grown-ups could come and play. It will be an entertainment and hospitality hub downtown, seeking to provide over-the-top experiences that you won’t be able to get anywhere else.

Circa’s name itself reflects its goal of marrying vintage Vegas hospitality with modern splendor by honoring the golden ages of Sin City, circa 1940, 1980, and 2020. The beautiful new project is a joint effort by the Stevens brothers, Derek and Greg.

While Las Vegas was originally marketed to bring in an adult crowd, throughout the 1990s, the city worked hard to attract families. This was evident in the amount of entertainment geared toward kids, think MGM’s former amusement park, the old Wet n’ Wild water park that was once located adjacent to the Sahara Las Vegas, and Circus Circus’ popular Adventure Dome among other themed attractions.

Now, the Circa is trying to break new grounds…and in more ways than one. In fact, it’s the first ground-up hotel and casino to be built in Downtown Las Vegas since the Lucky Dragon, which opened up in 2016. It’s now also the tallest building north of the Las Vegas Strip, standing pretty at 44 stories tall, and nearly 500 feet high.

The exciting new property will add to owner Derek Steven’s downtown empire, which includes the popular Golden Gate Hotel & Casino and the D Las Vegas. He’s being intentional with the new Circa, with an emphasis on Vegas’ lucky number 7. Circa will have 777 total rooms and suites that will fill up the mega 25 million-square-foot property.

While it stands at 44 stories tall, the floor numbers will actually go 60 levels up, but Stevens explained that some floor numbers will be purposely left out.

But, the newest player in downtown Las Vegas will have a lot to write home about. The one-of-a-kind resort will feature one-of-a-kind amenities, such as the largest sportsbook in all of Vegas, a 9-story parking garage, a multi-tiered pool amphitheater with a year-round temperature-controlled pool, and more.

Circa’s Game-Changing Features

Let’s dive into exactly what will make Circa the most exciting new property to hit the Las Vegas valley this decade.

Vegas’ Largest New Sports Book

Stevens was inspired to create the biggest sportsbook in Las Vegas after recalling the feeling he got when he noticed the splendor of the then Las Vegas Hilton Superbook in 1986.

As a lover and sports and sports betting, he vowed to fulfill his vision of someday creating a state-of-the-art, multi-level sportsbook that would be in a class of its own in a city filled with sportsbooks.

Circa’s new 3-story sportsbook is being built stadium-style and will feature the biggest screen in sportsbook history. The sportsbook will have two floors of stadium seating, and the third floor of it will feature a studio for the Vegas Sports and Information Network (VSiN).

There will be five media studios in total at the Circa Sportsbook, with the other studios being available for various other broadcasts.

Stevens wants Circa’s sportsbook to recreate that exact same “wow” feeling he first got over 30 years ago at the former Hilton. And it sounds like there’s going to be hundreds of thousands of those reactions to come.

“We want to create something that people don’t forget. For me, I’ll never forget that moment I walked into the Las Vegas Hilton (now Westgate) SuperBook. I looked around, and I thought to myself, ‘my god, this is the greatest place on Earth right here.’”

Garage Mahal

Circa’s first-of-its-kind 9-story parking garage, called “Garage Mahal,” will make it convenient for guests to come downtown.

It was designed with today’s popular form of transportation in mind: ride-sharing. Uber and Lyft will be able to easily access the garage, taking passengers to and from the property, making it an easy access point for patrons in the area.

The World’s Coolest Rooftop Pool

Circa’s multi-tiered pool is planning on being recognized as the “greatest pool in the world” once it’s open to the public. The pool will be more than just a place to take a dip, it’ll double as an events center.

It’ll feature multiple levels, with a 134-by-41-foot video as its special draw.

The video screen will allow for various customized experienced, making it an excellent sports-viewing experience. There will be six different pools for guests to enjoy, and able to accommodate 4,000 people.

And it’s not its massive size or design that will set it apart from any other pool in Las Vegas, or the rest of the world for that matter, but its temperature control system that will make it possible for the pool to remain open 365 days out of the year.

That’s new for a pool in Las Vegas, whereas other Vegas pools typically shut down for the winter, reopening in the Spring for guests. It’s gearing up to be the hottest Spring Break/March Madness locale in Sin City.

Vegas Vickie

Vegas Vickie, an iconic, kicking cowgirl statue that used to perch proudly above the Fremont Street Experience, is coming back to life inside of Circa’s hotel lobby, where she’ll live.

Many Vegas veterans will recognize her, adding that vintage flair that the company is trying to capitalize on.

Adults-Only

In the early 2000s in Vegas, the city began to make the shift from marketing toward the whole family, to shifting the focus back to a more adult-themed playground as originally envisioned.

Circa will serve as a reprieve for those not traveling with children or to those who don’t have them, as being the first adult-only exclusive resort in Las Vegas in 2020.

Four Restaurants Will Debut in October Opening

When the property opens this October, there will be four different dining establishments for guests to choose from.

Barry S. Dakake, who most recently the executive chef at Scotch 80 Prime at the Palms, will make his return to the Vegas dining scene with Barry’s Downtown Prime. It will feature vintage steak and seafood cuisine.

Paul Siginaw, a Michigan restaurateur, will be opening up Saginaw’s Delicatessen. The deli will feature traditional items such as Reubens, matzo ball soup, latkes, salads, chopped liver, breakfast favorites, and more.

The family who owns the 102-year-old American Coney Island franchise will bring Victory Burgers & Wings Co. to the Circa, which will be located near the three-story sports book screen.

Victory Burger will feature specialty burgers, such as the half-pound burger Victory Burger which will be prepared using a special blend of short rib, brisket, and Angus beef.

And finally, chef Rex Bernales will be opening up Project BBQ. It will feature Carolina-style barbecue dishes including pulled brisket, pork, and chicken. The restaurant will include patio dining and an outdoor bar situated on the Fremont Street Experience.

In December, Chef Dan Coughlin, the chef who runs Le Thai on Fremont East District, will open up his Pan-Asian restaurant 8 East. It will feature Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, Korean, and Thai dishes

Circa Las Vegas Opening Ahead of Schedule

The new resort was originally slated for a Dec. 2020 opening launch, but with the way that 2020 has gone, they’re decided to push the opening date even earlier.

Now, Oct. 28 will see the first five floors of amenities and “Garage Mahal” fully functioning and opening to the public.

When the resort opens, it will open with an unannounced number of rooms to start, the casino gaming floor, the three-story race and sports book, its various restaurants and bars, the glamorous pool, and a multi-tiered outdoor amphitheater.

To accomplish the ahead-of-schedule move, construction workers were reallocated from Circa’s hotel tower to finish construction on the property’s first five floors.

Beginning Wednesday at 9 a.m., the property will begin taking reservations. Once it opens, it’s expected to have 1,000 staff members on hand.

Stay Tuned

Perhaps Circa is opening ahead of schedule with all of the changes in tourism caused by the COVID-19, but we’re glad that it will be ready for the public to experience just ahead of Halloween weekend.

What do you think of the resorts’ “adult-only” restriction? Does it make you more inclined to stay at the resort?

Share your thoughts with us below! And be sure to check back for the latest Las Vegas news.

Caesars Entertainment Report 2 COVID-19 Cases at Flamingo Casino in LV

Flamingo Hotel in Las VegasLas Vegas finally reopened some of its popular casinos on June 4, after Gov. Sisolak declared the Phase 2 reopening for the state after COVID-19 trends stabilized into a downward trajectory.

Now, two weeks later, reports of additional COVID-19 cases are emerging from the Las Vegas Strip.

On Thursday, two positive COVID-19 cases at the Flamingo hotel-casino were confirmed by a Caesars Entertainment spokesperson. The spokesperson also confirmed that contact tracing protocols were being implemented as a precautionary safety measure.

The company’s representatives did not confirm whether the positive cases were staff members or guests. According to health officials, it can take an average of five to six days before coronavirus symptoms show up after first being exposed to the virus. However, symptoms can also remain dormant for us to 14 days following initial exposure.

On Wednesday, another case coming from the Strip was confirmed when a kitchen worker out of Bellagio’s Mayfair Supper Club testing positively for COVID-19. The Supper Club, which is a part-dining, part-entertainment venue, was one of the few live entertainment options currently available on the Las Vegas Strip.

It was temporarily forced to shut down on Wednesday after the worker tested positive.

Flamingo Hotel Hosted First Pool Party Amid Reopening

After 78 days of lockdown, the Flamingo hosted Las Vegas’ first pool party to welcome back guests in true Flamingo fashion.

Casino executives, like Regional President Eileen Moore Johnson and Ken Janssen were on deck to greet guests looking to escape the Vegas heat and have a good time again, as well as showgirls dressed in Flamingo-colored two-pieces with feathers and masks.

Many pools on reopened Strip properties have opened its door alongside their respective casinos, and they’ve been packed with people the past two weekends.

It’s good to see the pent-up demand that Vegas has been met with since reopening. There has, however, been an unfortunate trend of people not wearing masks while out and about on Las Vegas Boulevard.

So much so, that the Nevada Gaming Control Board made updated to its health and safety protocols in an effort to get people to treat mask usage more seriously.

In fact, Nevada Governor, Steve Sisolak, will be keeping the state in Phase 2 longer as he’s disappointed in the number of people out and about who aren’t wearing masks and taking the threat of the virus more seriously.

Coronavirus Numbers in Nevada

On Friday, Nevada saw its largest single-day increase of cases since the pandemic started, with 410 cases. It surpasses Monday’s total of 379 positive cases.

Nevada now has 12,486 confirmed cases, with 9,852 of those cases coming out of Clark County. There have been no new reported COVID-19-related deaths, with the state’s total death count at 478.

It seems the positive number of cases has been on the rise due to a number of factors. For one, the testing capacity in the state has increased, and public gatherings for up to 50 people have been approved. Of course, the reopening of major casinos and hotel properties is likely a contributing factor as well.

$10 Million Steakhouse to Open on July 2 at Flamingo

It’s unsure whether the rise of confirmed cases will delay the plans that Flamingo has to debut their new $10 million steakhouse on July 2, but we’ll see.

The steakhouse, which will be called the Bugsy & Meyer’s Steakhouse, will pay homage to Vegas’ historic roots. It’s named after for Bugsy Siegel and Meyer Lansky, two men tied closely to Las Vegas history and the city’s birth.

The restaurant will feature a hidden speakeasy called The Count Room. Other special features include a dry meat cooler, bakery façade, centerpiece bar and lounge, a raw bar, a decorative dining room and three private dining rooms.

Bugsy & Meyer’s Steakhouse will begin accepting reservations for July 2, while following Caesar’s Entertainment enhanced health and safety protocols. Those protocols include spacing tables six feet apart and allowing 50 percent capacity to comply with social distancing guidelines.

Hand sanitizing stations will also be placed around the restaurant and restaurant employees will be required to wear masks.

Caesars Entertainment Reopens Paris Las Vegas

On Thursday, June 18, Caesars Entertainment opened up its fourth property to the public. After the successful reopenings of Caesars Palace Las Vegas, Flamingo Las Vegas, Harrah’s Las Vegas, The LINQ Promenade and High Roller Observation Wheel, Paris Las Vegas was the next property to resume its gaming and hospitality operations.

To commemorate the momentous occasion, Paris Las Vegas had a big French-inspired reopening featuring can-can dancers, a Monsieur Loyal ringmaster, and Caesars Entertainment executive members on hand to greet visitors.

Guests to the newly reopened property can expect to see renovated rooms and suites, a variety of food and beverage amenities, and have access to the fitness center and outdoor pool.

To honor the reopening, the Eiffel Tower at Paris Las Vegas will also showcase a free light show happening every half hour from dusk to midnight through June 30.

The property intends to comply with reopening directives and guidelines provided by Governor Sisolak, the Nevada Gaming Control Board, and public health authorities.

Paris Las Vegas Open Dining Options

Arc Bar – daily, 2 p.m. to 10 p.m.

BEER PARK – daily, 2 p.m. to close

Café Americano – daily, 6 a.m. to noon

Café Belle Madeleine – breakfast daily, 5 a.m. to noon

Eiffel Tower Restaurant – daily, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Gordon Ramsay Steak – Thursday through Sunday, 4 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.

Gustav’s Bar – daily, 24 hours

HEXX Kitchen + Bar – daily, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

JJ’s Boulangerie (dining room) – daily, 24 hours

La Creperie – breakfast daily, 6 a.m. to noon

La Pizza (express window) – daily, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Le Cabaret Bar – daily, 2 p.m. to close

Le Central Bar – daily, 24 hours

Mon Ami Gabi – daily, 7 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.

Pool and Fitness Center Hours

Soleil Pool – daily, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (hours subject to change dependent on weather)

Voie Fitness Center – daily, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Bellagio & Caesars Palace Reopen Their Poker Rooms

Poker Room in Bellagio Casino Las VegasThe Bellagio and Caesars Palace, which were the first of MGM Resorts and Caesars International properties to reopen on June 4, reopened their poker rooms two weeks later on Thursday, June 18 at 10 a.m.

They’re not the first casinos to reopen their poker rooms, however, trailing behind The Golden Nugget, The Orleans, The Venetian, the South Point, and Sahara Las Vegas, who reopened its poker room on the same day.

Per guidelines provided by the Nevada Gaming Control Board, poker games are limited to five players per table. Bellagio received approval for six-handed tables. Plexiglass dividers will be placed in between players in compliance with the CDC’s social distancing guidelines. While masks on players are not required, at least not yet, they are being strongly encouraged. Masks on dealers and other Bellagio casino personnel are mandatory.

According to the official press release, The Bellagio poker room will be open daily, 24 hours a day, all throughout the week. The poker room will host cash games only initially, with no tournaments allowed at the current time. Players will not be allowed to eat in the room, and no guests or spectators will be allowed in.

According to a Caesars spokesperson, the Caesars Palace poker room will use five-handed tables, and all players will be required to wear masks. The hours of operations are from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m., Thursday through Sunday.

Bellagio’s poker room is one of the premier poker rooms in all of Vegas. Its high-stakes room is known as “Bobby’s Room,” named after former MGM Resorts International executive Bobby Baldwin, who was the 1978 World Series of Poker champ. Baldwin also regularly hosts big poker tournaments throughout the world.

The largest poker room in the world also reopens today at 6 p.m. It’s located inside of the Commerce Casino, which is located just outside of Los Angeles. Games here will be played eight-handed, and players are required to wear masks with plexiglass barriers to divide players safely.

World Series of Poker Online Starts in July

In-person poker is coming back slowly but surely in the gambling mecca of the world, but another major poker event is getting the green light to start in July; that’s the World Series of Poker.

While it won’t be an in-person event this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, it will be a major online event featuring players from the U.S. and all over the world, with 85 gold bracelet events. Each day in July, a bracelet will be awarded on WSOP.com.

Before the outbreak happened, the WSOP was scheduled to run from May 26 to July 15 at the Rio Convention Center but has since been reworked to be an exclusively online event, much like other major events held this year.

Daniel Negreanu, six-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner, said turning WSOP into an online event to make the show go on was a classic case of the event “making the best of it.”

Negreanu, who is a Las Vegas resident, says he plans to play in the online tournament until July 19, when the GG Poker tournament, who he is an ambassador for, begins.

The buy-ins for the U.S. online WSOP range from $400 to $3,200.

Bellagio’s Supper Club Shut Down After Workers Tests Positive for COVID-19

Bellagio’s Mayfair Supper Club, which functions as a part-dining, part-entertainment venue, was one of the first live entertainment venues to reopen in the valley.

However, after one of its kitchen staff tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this week, it was forced to temporarily close its doors on Wednesday, with a reopening date to be determined. According to a MGM Resorts spokesperson, the employee found out about the positive coronavirus result after coming into work on Wednesday.

Prior to that, the employee’s last working day was on Sunday. Staff who were in direct contact with the employee were notified of the positive test result.

In a statement released to the Las Vegas Review Journal, Mayfair Supper Club announced that due to an abundance of caution, that they would be closing for the evening, fully sanitizing the work area, and determining who may have come into direct contact with the infected individual.

Nevada Gaming Control Board Updates its Health and Safety Protocols

On Wednesday, the Nevada Gaming Control Board made updates on its health and safety protocols for casinos, tightening up previously released guidelines for gamblers who wish to sit and play. It includes stronger language in the encouragement of patrons to wear face masks while inside of casinos.

For casinos that have no plexiglass barriers at table games, gamblers are required to wear face coverings. That requirement applies to table and card players, spectators, and any other individual who is within six feet of table or card games.

As of now, patrons are not required to wear face masks while inside of the dining establishments inside of casinos.

Requirements for face masks are more stringent for casino staff, without outright mandating them for guests. Properties must now offer all guests with a face covering when they enter into the casino or have “dedicated signage” alerting patrons to the availability of the personal protective equipment (PPE) and recommended its usage.

Should any patron ask for a mask, it must be provided by a staff member.

Changes Come As People Ease Up on Mask Use

These new changes come as COVID-19 cases across the state have been on steadily increasing, and state officials recognizing the seemingly relaxed attitude toward people wearing them as the reopenings come.

Gaming Control Board Chair Sandra Douglass Morgan, for one, has noticed that people seem to be easing up on mask use, despite the growing evidence that mask usage can prevent the spread of the deadly virus.

Morgan urges people to continue to act responsibly in the age of the coronavirus, especially, not in spite of, restrictions being lifted across the state. She said that if individuals want to be able to come back to Vegas in three or six months or the next year even, they need to be responsible by respecting and following the important guidelines that have been put into place for everyone’s ultimate safety.

Policies for Closed Events Have Also Been Updated

The Gaming Control Board also outlined a policy for guidelines pertaining to closed events at gaming properties on Wednesday as well. The closed events policy applies to any live event that would normally have an in-person audience, including concerts, entertainment shows, competition shows, or sporting events.

In order to be able to hold a closed event, the Event Operator is to submit an Operation Plan to the Nevada Gaming Control Board within at least 14 days leading up to the planned event date, to adequately allow the Control Board to review the Operation Plan.

The Operation Plan is to detail the specific steps the Event Operators will follow and comply with, a floor plan or diagram of the Event venue, Event personnel details, such as the number of personnel involved, the function of personnel members, details on internal systems being used for the Event, and an overview of sanitation procedures.

Event Operators are to consider all applicable Federal, state, and local social distancing guidelines, such as the capacity limits of public gatherings, and the spacing of individual personnel and Event performers per social distancing guidelines.

Current COVID-19 Trends in Nevada

Casinos were allowed to reopen in Phase 2 of Nevada’s phased reopening plan, per Gov. Steve Sisolak’s orders. The state was deemed ready to reopen based on the steady, downward trajectory trend of COVID-19 positive cases and the number of hospitalizations.

Now, the state continues to monitor the influx of coronavirus cases as casinos, restaurants, and other businesses have reopened.

Currently, the Silver State crossed 12,000 COVID-19 cases on Thursday, reporting 234 new cases as of Wednesday, marking a 2 percent single-day growth rate out of a batch of 3,767 Now, the state has 12,076 cases it reports.

It’s unsure whether the slight uptick of cases is a result of casinos reopening, the George Floyd protests that occurred throughout the Strip and Downtown LV which saw many protestors shoulder-to-shoulder, or a combination of both.

Pools at many resorts have also reopened, with many day pools being packed on the two weekends following casinos reopening.

We will have to continue to wait and see where the majority of these new cases are being reported out of.

On Governor Sisolak’s Monday address to the state, he announced that Nevada would stay in Phase 2 at least until the end of the month. He expressed disdain in the fact that many Nevadans were not wearing face coverings while out in public, and that being a major cause for concern and reason for pushing back Phase 3 of his reopening plan.

Stay Tuned

While we’re thrilled that casinos in the state and across the country (for the most part) have been given the green light to reopen amid the pandemic, we hope that the number of COVID-19 begins to decrease soon.

Have you been to Las Vegas since its reopened? Are you a local who’s been back into town since the reopenings keep trickling in? And will you be playing at one of the reopened poker rooms soon?

Recently, the Sahara Las Vegas announced its new reservation system for table games, the first-of-its-kind in the city in response to COVID-19 protocols, as well as the reopening of its poker room.

Be sure to check back for more coverage regarding Las Vegas reopening news.

Sahara LV Creates “Take a Seat” Reservation Program for Table Games

Sahara Las Vegas CasinoOn Tuesday, Sahara Las Vegas announced that they will be taking appointments for table games, in what they’re advertising as “reserve your playtime.” The new program was developed as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the new safety protocols surrounding it.

In up to 72 hours in advance, players will now be able to conveniently reserve tables through this online portal. Players can reserve seats at Sahara’s Blackjack, Roulette and Bacarrat tables.

Once on property, players can check into the Infinity Lounge 15 minutes ahead of their requested time, and their reservations will be held up to 20 minutes past their requested time.

This is a convenient option for players who want to sit and play at their own table with friends or family, and the first-of-its-kind service at a casino property in Las Vegas, amid casinos in the city reopening.

Pre-social distancing rules apply to members of the same household, allowing for the maximum capacity of players at one table. Social distancing rules of those not in the same household are capped out at around three players per table, or half the full capacity.

In the same announcement, Sahara also shared that they will be reopening their poker room this Thursday, June 18. Tables will be limited to five players max per table, and players will be asked to reserve online in advance as well.

Sahara Welcomes Back Locals with Resort-Wide Specials

Sahara is known for being a hot spot for locals, especially since it transitioned back over to its iconic “Sahara” flagship name, after being the SLS for the past five years.

Now, the property is offering big deals to show more love to locals, with hopes that they’ll come back and book a stay with them very soon.

To entice locals to enjoy a “relaxing staycation escape,” they’re offering locals:

  • No resort fee
  • 10% off rooms and suites
  • Hundreds in savings with their virtual fun book, including half-off cabanas and daybeds, free Starbucks™ coffee and more
  • Ability to change or cancel reservations within a 24-hour window, without penalty fees
  • Free parking always
  • 50 percent off dining at the property

In order for locals to receive the deals, they must book stay by September 3, 2020. Book your staying by clicking here.

Stay Tuned

Locals, will you be taking advantage of the specials Sahara Las Vegas is currently offering?

And what do you think of the new reservation program for table games? It will be interesting to see if other casinos follow suit.

Be sure to check back for more updates regarding casino news in Las Vegas.