If you have any lingering attachments to Bill’s Gamblin’ Hall & Saloon, it’s probably best to let go of them once and for all. The casino’s worthy successor, The Cromwell, has opened its casino, and we’re happy to say we love it.
Perhaps to be more accurate, we should say, “We’re both happy and shocked to say we love it.” Mainly because from what we’d heard, we expected the hotel to be pretentious and a little snooty. The casino is neither of those things, and it didn’t take long for The Cromwell to win us over.
Oh, all right, here are some light fixtures.
The casino’s first night open (officially a soft opening) appeared to be without any significant glitches. The Cromwell’s staff was appropriate perky and helpful, and guests seemed excited to break in the slot machines and table felt.
We were pleasantly surprised to see low table minimums, including $5 craps tables.
Other good news for fans of the former Bill’s is the layout of the casino feels very familiar. Though Bill’s was stripped down to its skeleton, the building is still long and narrow, so it’s impossible to get lost in the casino.
An appealing new addition, though, is a large lounge right in the middle of the casino floor. We liked the vibe immediately, although we had a minor palpitation when we saw a signature cocktail (The Lude, short for the lounge’s name, Interlude) priced at $19. Most ranged from $15-17.
Most uncomfortable cocktail name on the Interlude menu? Julio’s Hooch Juice ($17). We are not making this up.
The lounge has a number of intimate booths, separated by drapes (see below). The space seems ideal for small groups to gather, presumably before or after they head off to what are expected to be popular nightlife spots, the pool area on the hotel’s roof, or Drai’s After Hours club, downstairs. (The elevator to Drai’s After Hours hasn’t moved, of course, and they didn’t even swap out the vinyl sign on the elevator, so Drai’s fans won’t have any problem finding it.)
Note how the pillars in the casino match the drink menu covers at the lounge.
We collect gaming chips, so we got our traditional $1 chip. A little underdesigned, but since that’s not a real word, we’re not going to get riled up over it.
The Cromwell is still a work in progress, so there are still parts of the casino in flux. For example, this hotel bar isn’t quite open yet, but we already like it.
The Cromwell doesn’t have a sports book, as Bill’s did, so these kiosks will have to suffice.
The hotel registration desk is, well, it’s petite, but the friendliness of the staff (photo, below) made it seem bigger. Or something.
Yes, The Cromwell is taking room reservations, and the hotel will officially open May 21, 2014. Find out more at the official Web site.
The Cromwell, it turns out, surpassed our expectations by a mile, and we look forward to playing there again soon. We’ll be curious to see what affect the club crowd has on the pleasantness of the place once those nightlife venues open.
Now, sit back and enjoy our exclusive gallery of more poorly lit, out-of-focus photos of The Cromwell Las Vegas.
The Cromwell Las Vegas Casino