Category Archives: Las Vegas

Nevada Moves to Phase 2 of Reopening on May 29, Casinos Reopen June 4

Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak announced the state is moving into “Phase 2” of the state’s reopening plan on May 29, 2020.

Las Vegas casinos are still on track to reopen on June 4, 2020 (although not all will, as some will wait until demand returns).

In Phase 2, bars can reopen. That’s really the most important part, but here’s a handy chart that includes everything.

Nevada phase 2 reopening


Please don’t poke fun at the phase names. That’s our job.

Basically, Phase 2 means just about everything can reopen, but with restrictions like social distancing and capacity limits.

It’s worth noting salons and businesses that provide aesthetic services can open. So, what the Governor’s saying is everyone can get facials in Las Vegas again.

We’ll wait.

The things that can’t open in Phase 2? Nightclubs and dayclubs, adult entertainment establishments (strip clubs) and brothels.

Sheri's Ranch Las Vegas Brothel

Hold on, Sheri’s Ranch. Hold on.

Gatherings of 50 people or more rules out live sporting event venues, live performance venues and many of the best orgies.

As happened with restaurants on May 9, other Las Vegas businesses are now put in the position of having very little time to reopen, so expect many to wait until they can get their ducks in a row.

The process of reopening casinos on June 4 will be especially complicated, and guests will encounter a number of safety measures in place when they return. They include:

googie Temperature checks at the entrances of casinos, some taken by thermal scanners (100.4 is the temp to beat for entry)
googie Employees wearing masks, recommendations guests do as well
googie Capacity limited to 50% at casinos and restaurants
googie Social distancing everywhere, including fewer spots at table games
googie Four passenger limits in elevators
googie Increased cleaning procedures, especially slot machines
googie Casino employees will discourage guests from congregating
googie A metric hell-ton of hand sanitizer dispensers

Here’s a video showing some of the changes at Wynn Las Vegas.

Wynn safety

The “new temporary” is going to be awkward.

On the bright side, life will finally start to get back to normal in Phase 2. From hardcore gamblers to locals going stir crazy during the shutdown, we should see Las Vegas spring back to life in no time. Pent up demand is going to ensure a strong start, and from there we collectively make the best of an awful situation nobody could’ve predicted. Except Bill Gates. But pretty much nobody.

We’ve never been more excited to just sit in a bar and banter with a bartender about plastic versus paper straws. To see a movie. To get a massage. To laugh at people going into gyms and art galleries. To get a nipple piercing. Mostly the bar thing.

You can see the official Phase 2 announcement in the official news release (.pdf format).

Let’s Vegas again.

Checking In on Progress at Resorts World Las Vegas

Resorts World is looking more and more like a proper Las Vegas resort, so we stopped by to check out the progress.

Boom.

Resorts World

We like to think “boom” makes things more dramatic. Play along.

In case that wasn’t dramatic enough, take a look at our photo from August 2016.

Resorts World 2016

Modesty precludes us from reminding you how “essential” we are, probably.

Resorts World, owned by Malaysia-based Genting Group, is a new casino resort on the Las Vegas Strip slated to open in summer 2021. Thankfully, it doesn’t appear that timeline has been slowed by the COVID-19 shutdown.

It’s really important Las Vegas have something to look forward to right now.

The hotel tower was topped off in August 2019, and construction now extends nearly to Las Vegas Boulevard. It’s mostly shopping, but who cares? Exciting!

Resorts World

The Resorts World hotel tower was built on the bones of Echelon Place, probably farther from the sidewalk than the current owners would’ve preferred. We play the hand we’re dealt.

Resorts World is 59 stories tall and will have about 3,400 rooms. The resort is expected to cost about $4.3 billion.

Resorts World was originally going to have an Asian theme, but that was nixed, along with any hopes of live pandas.

Here’s a look at the most recent rendering of Resorts World Las Vegas.

Resorts World Vegas

Resorts World has already started testing the lights on its west tower.

Look closely, and you can see how some of the features in the renderings are being brought to life.

Resorts World Las Vegas casino

Just take our money. We’re ready to party.

Dropping the Asian theme was one of many changes at Resorts World since the project was first announced back in 1865.

Here’s a look at one of the original renderings, where Resorts World was going to have seven hotel towers. The only constant in Vegas is change.

Resorts World Vegas

The original vision for Resorts World was a tad extra.

Resorts World recently released new renderings of some of its interiors, including for bars and some of its meeting areas.

Asian theme out, whimsy in.

What a wild ride it’s been for Resorts World, with multiple delays (most intentional) and numerous staffing changes.

The latest buzz (ours, to be specific) is Resorts World is shaping up to make a splash when it opens in 2021, and we love us some Las Vegas newness.

Word is the resort is sparing no expense in its design and construction, and we’ve also heard a serious investment is being made in wrangling world-class entertainment.

A number of potential headliners have been in the mix, including the first lady of residencies, Celine Dion. We’re actually the only one that’s floated that rumor, but Resorts World hasn’t denied it, so we’ll take it.

Resorts World

Dem views, tho.

Check out our vast and poorly-focused photo gallery for more of the latest from Resorts World. It many have taken a pandemic for us to fully appreciate the splendor of Resorts World, but we’re a bigtime cheerleader at the moment.

Absolutely nothing can compare to that new casino smell.

Update (5/28/20): Resorts World is installing and testing its video screen.

Resorts World video screen

Resorts World is apparently using Windows 95. We kid. It’s going to be awesome.

Governor Sets June 4 Target for Reopening Las Vegas Casinos

Nevada’s Governor Steve Sisolak says the target for reopening Las Vegas casinos is June 4, 2020.

Opening casinos on June 4 would mean the end of an agonizing, 486-month shutdown of the world’s most important industry aside from the manufacturing of Captain Morgan spiced rum.

Sisolak Tweet

When the fun starts.

The Governor is expected to announce the next phase of Nevada’s reopening plan at a new conference on May 26, 2020.

The announcement could put to rest a metric hell-ton of speculation about when Las Vegas casinos will reopen.

When casinos get the green light from the Governor and Nevada Gaming Control Board, it won’t mean all the casinos will open, of course.

Several are expected to open immediately, others will wait and reopen based upon demand.

Big casino companies are moving guests with reservations at closed hotels to those opening sooner. For example, guests with reservations at MGM Resorts hotels are being offered accommodations at Bellagio, New York-New York and MGM Grand.

At Caesars Entertainment, Caesars Palace and Flamingo will open first.

Caesars

Caesars Palace will open ahead of many on The Strip. A head. Please try and keep up.

In spectacular news, MGM Resorts and Caesars Entertainment will provide free parking for the first time since 2016.

Most downtown casinos are expected to open right away, other than those in the Boyd Gaming family (Fremont, The Cal and Main Street Station).

Key to the reopening Las Vegas casinos, of course, is doing it safely.

All the major casinos have created safety plans with extensive information about new protocols being instituted to ensure everyone can debauch with confidence.

Find the plans here:

googie Wynn Resorts
googie MGM Resorts
googie Caesars Entertainment
googie Las Vegas Sands (Venetian/Palazzo)
googie Station Casinos (.pdf)
googie The Strat (Golden Entertainment)
googie Sahara
googie Cosmopolitan

Many of the safety plans overlap, and Las Vegas visitors will have some minor inconveniences, but for the most part, it will be business as usual for gamblers. Employees will be wearing masks. Temperatures may be taken. Groups will be encouraged not to congregate.

On the bright side, more elbow room, less noise and smoke!

Despite the seemingly endless shutdown of Las Vegas casinos, we’re nearly out of the woods.

There’s a lot of pent up demand, and we’re ready to pent the hell out of Vegas, again.

Caesars Entertainment Joins MGM Resorts, Cosmopolitan to Bring Back Free Parking

It took a pandemic, but Las Vegas casino companies are finally realizing they need to dump paid parking to bring customers back to their resorts.

Caesars Entertainment confirmed it will “suspending fees for paid self-parking” at its Las Vegas resorts when they reopen following the COVID-19 shutdown.

Caesars Palace paid parking

All this wasted money on parking kiosks and signs and arms and bollards. Boo, meet hoo.

As is typical for Caesars Entertainment, the company’s announcement followed a similar fee suspension by MGM Resorts. Caesars lead from behind in starting to charge for parking after MGM Resorts got the WTF rolling in 2016.

We know that’s not what “lead from behind” means, but you get the drift.

Cosmopolitan also says it will nix paid parking when the resort comes back online. A trifecta of great news!

Rolling back paid parking at so many casinos is pretty much the textbook definition of a Las Vegas blog’s wet dream. Although, it’s fairly weird that would be in a textbook.

Caesars Entertainment finally confirmed our April scoop that Caesars Palace and Flamingo would be the first casinos in the company’s roster to open in Las Vegas.

Flamingo reopen

We bring the boom.

No reopen date was given, but all eyes are on June 1.

Also opening when Caesars gets the green light, the Linq promenade shopping mall and High Roller observation wheel.

The next Caesars Entertainment casinos to open will be Harrah’s as well as Linq, although in the case of Linq, just the casino. Which is sort of the most important part, anyway. The timing of those openings will be based upon demand.

Caesars Entertainment answers a lot of questions on its official Web site. Please come back, though. We’re probably going to say something really embarrassing and you definitely don’t want to miss it.

On the MGM Resorts side, Bellagio and New York-New York will be the first casino resorts to open.

It’s becoming clearer there’s a lot of pent up demand for casinos right now and, surprisingly, it’s not all ours.

Let’s get these casinos open so we can Las Vegas again.

Three PizzaRev Restaurants in Las Vegas Close Permanently

The fallout of the COVID-19 shutdown continues with word three PizzaRev restaurants have closed permanently in Las Vegas.

PizzaRev

It’s all fun and games until the pizza places close. Because pizza.

PizzaRev acknowledged the closures on Instagram, saying, “Unfortunately due to the impact of COVID-19, some of our locations have permanently closed. Thanks for understanding.”

We called all the numbers for the restaurants, all were disconnected.

“Impact” is one word for it.

The Las Vegas PizzaRev locations were on S. Rancho Drive and S. Rainbow Ave. An additional store closed on W. Sunset Rd. in Henderson.

PizzaRev (the “Rev” stands for “revolution”) has 30-plus locations and got its start in Los Angeles.

The first Las Vegas PizzaRev restaurant opened in February 2016.

The chain is known for giving customers the option to customize their pies, as well as the use of 900-degree stone-bed ovens.

PizzaRev joins a growing list of Las Vegas restaurants that won’t back, even after the shutdown ends.

Elon Musk’s Boring Co. Wraps Drilling of Las Vegas Convention Center Tunnels

Construction has been completed on the second of two tunnels at the Las Vegas Convention Center. The tunnels are part of an underground transportation system conceived by Elon Musk.

Musk’s Boring Company finished drilling the second tunnel on May 14, 2020.

Elon Musk tunnel Vegas

Tunnels and drilling and breaking through and paging Dr. Freud!

The underground system, dubbed the Convention Center Loop, is set to cost $52.5 million and will move guests from one end of the sprawling, 200-acre Las Vegas Convention Center in less than two minutes.

The tunnel system will utilize 62 all-electric Tesla vehicles. The system is designed to move up to 4,400 conventioneers per hour.

Here’s the money shot!

The Loop will open with drivers, but will eventually use autonomous shuttles. The vehicles will travel 35-40 miles per hour, mainly because people are big babies. These Teslas vehicles could go up to 150 miles an hour.

The project includes three passenger stations, already underway.

Convention Center Loop map

We added the forth stop. It’s just a matter of time. Do you know anything about Las Vegas conventions at all?

Each of the two tunnels is .8 miles long, typically a 20-30 minute walk. We know, we’ve walked it. It’s a trek.

The Convention Center Loop will be available free of charge. Hell, yes, we’re riding on it and we aren’t even a convention person.

Despite some skeptism early on, Elon Musk’s tunnel project has gone off without a hitch.

It’s expected the Convention Center Loop will debut in January 2021.

Elon Musk tunnel

We are not cleaning this up.

Fun fact: The drilling machine tunneled an average of 100 feet per day, touted as being twice as fast as standard tunneling machines.

Next up, the tunnels get paved. Then comes lighting, electrical, communications, fire and safety systems and installation of full-service bars in each of the Tesla vehicles.

Just making sure you’re still paying attention. Bring a flask.