New York-New York Hotel and Casino
New York-New York Hotel & Casino is a hotel and casino on the Las Vegas Strip in Nevada, USA, designed to evoke New York City in its architecture and other aspects. It is operated by MGM Resorts International. New York-New York Hotel & Casino is located in Paradise, Nevada, it uses the New York City influence of its name in several ways. Its architecture is meant to evoke the New York City skyline of the 1940s era. In front of the property is a replica of the Statue of Liberty, replicas of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Main Immigration Building on Ellis Island, Grand Central Terminal. Within the resort, particular gambling areas, lounges and meeting rooms are named after New York City neighborhoods or landmarks; the main casino area, for example, is named after Times Square, while the eateries are modeled after Greenwich Village. At the casino, special decks of playing cards are used; the resort is located on the northwest corner of the Tropicana – Las Vegas Boulevard intersection.
At street level, pedestrians are blocked from crossing by concrete barriers. Instead, it is linked by overhead pedestrian bridges to its neighboring casinos to the south and to the east; the 18-acre site at the northwest corner of the Tropicana – Las Vegas Boulevard intersection had been considered a prime spot for development due to its proximity to the MGM Grand and Tropicana. Japanese firm Universal Distributing owned the property, had discussed a joint venture with the Promus Companies to build a hotel-casino, but could not reach an agreement. In 1992, Kirk Kerkorian's Tracinda Corporation bought the site for $31.5 million and offered MGM Grand Inc. of which Kerkorian owned 76%, a free two-year option to buy it. The idea of a casino modeled after the New York skyline was conceived by Mark Advent. Rogich brought the idea to Gary Primm, head of Primadonna Resorts. Primm approached MGM president Bob Maxey in 1994 with the idea for MGM's prime Strip location, a joint venture was formed between the two companies.
Construction began in March 1995. Completed at a cost of $460 million, New York-New York opened on January 3, 1997. Since the initiation of New York-New York, analysts had speculated that MGM Grand or Primadonna would buy out the other's interest in the project. Instead of making such a cash-intensive purchase, however, MGM agreed to buy Primadonna outright for $276 million in stock plus $336 million in assumed debt; the merger closed in March 1999. After the September 11, 2001 attacks, people spontaneously sent various tributes to New York-New York T-shirts from police and rescue departments around the country; these were displayed along the fence in front of the "Lady Liberty" replica. They added a memorial from 2003 to 2013; the twin towers of the World Trade Center have never been included in the skyscrapers depicted in the resort's facade. The 9/11 Memorial was removed in 2013 for a casino expansion; the US Post Office Statue of Liberty Forever stamp, intended to show the actual Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor shows the replica at New York-New York.
This is due to an error by the stamp designers, who incorrectly chose a stock photo of the replica instead of the original and did not recognize the difference. After the error was recognized the Postal Service continued producing the stamp. A Postal Service spokesman said the Service “would have selected this photograph anyway", citing its popularity and the Postal Service's desire to produce a stamp that appeared different from previous stamps depicting the Statue of Liberty. In 2013 the sculptor of the statue in Las Vegas sued the Postal Service for copyright infringement, his lawyers pointed out that the replica is a distinct piece of art, with intentional variations from the original Statue of Liberty. In July 2018, a judge ordered the U. S. Postal Service to pay Davidson $3.5 million. The Roller Coaster "Manhattan Express", travels through the property's interior and exterior; the coaster is 203 ft high, has a maximum drop of 144 ft, reaches speeds up to 67 mph. The ride has undergone a variety of enhancements including the introduction of a magnetic braking system and new trains.
The roller coaster has trains. New York-New York is home to Zumanity, the third show from Cirque du Soleil to take up permanent residence in the Las Vegas area and the first to be directed toward adult audiences, it is the only permanent Cirque show to allow admission only to those over 18 years of age. The theatre is arranged as a cabaret, with sofas and bar stools complementing the standard theatre seats; until June 2010, an ESPN Zone was located in the hotel, accessible from street level and from within the casino. It was a sports-themed restaurant with an upstairs arcade room full of sports-themed interactive games such as bowling, football, golf, horse racing, auto racing. On October 10, 2010, the hotel re-opened the facility after an extensive remodeling and dubbed it "Sporting House", catering to the same sporting crowd; the new facility was staffed and maintained by ARK, the food-and-beverage firm which runs other in-house facilities, including the employee dining room. The Sporting House
A hotel is an establishment that provides paid lodging on a short-term basis. Facilities provided may range from a modest-quality mattress in a small room to large suites with bigger, higher-quality beds, a dresser, a refrigerator and other kitchen facilities, upholstered chairs, a flat screen television, en-suite bathrooms. Small, lower-priced hotels may offer only the most basic guest facilities. Larger, higher-priced hotels may provide additional guest facilities such as a swimming pool, business centre, childcare and event facilities, tennis or basketball courts, restaurants, day spa, social function services. Hotel rooms are numbered to allow guests to identify their room; some boutique, high-end hotels have custom decorated rooms. Some hotels offer meals as part of a board arrangement. In the United Kingdom, a hotel is required by law to serve food and drinks to all guests within certain stated hours. In Japan, capsule hotels provide a tiny room suitable only for sleeping and shared bathroom facilities.
The precursor to the modern hotel was the inn of medieval Europe. For a period of about 200 years from the mid-17th century, coaching inns served as a place for lodging for coach travelers. Inns began to cater to richer clients in the mid-18th century. One of the first hotels in a modern sense was opened in Exeter in 1768. Hotels proliferated throughout Western Europe and North America in the early 19th century, luxury hotels began to spring up in the part of the 19th century. Hotel operations vary in size, function and cost. Most hotels and major hospitality companies have set industry standards to classify hotel types. An upscale full-service hotel facility offers luxury amenities, full service accommodations, an on-site restaurant, the highest level of personalized service, such as a concierge, room service, clothes pressing staff. Full service hotels contain upscale full-service facilities with a large number of full service accommodations, an on-site full service restaurant, a variety of on-site amenities.
Boutique hotels are smaller independent, non-branded hotels that contain upscale facilities. Small to medium-sized hotel establishments offer a limited amount of on-site amenities. Economy hotels are small to medium-sized hotel establishments that offer basic accommodations with little to no services. Extended stay hotels are small to medium-sized hotels that offer longer-term full service accommodations compared to a traditional hotel. Timeshare and destination clubs are a form of property ownership involving ownership of an individual unit of accommodation for seasonal usage. A motel is a small-sized low-rise lodging with direct access to individual rooms from the car park. Boutique hotels are hotels with a unique environment or intimate setting. A number of hotels have entered the public consciousness through popular culture, such as the Ritz Hotel in London; some hotels are built as a destination in itself, for example at casinos and holiday resorts. Most hotel establishments are run by a General Manager who serves as the head executive, department heads who oversee various departments within a hotel, middle managers, administrative staff, line-level supervisors.
The organizational chart and volume of job positions and hierarchy varies by hotel size and class, is determined by hotel ownership and managing companies. The word hotel is derived from the French hôtel, which referred to a French version of a building seeing frequent visitors, providing care, rather than a place offering accommodation. In contemporary French usage, hôtel now has the same meaning as the English term, hôtel particulier is used for the old meaning, as well as "hôtel" in some place names such as Hôtel-Dieu, a hospital since the Middle Ages; the French spelling, with the circumflex, was used in English, but is now rare. The circumflex replaces the's' found in the earlier hostel spelling, which over time took on a new, but related meaning. Grammatically, hotels take the definite article – hence "The Astoria Hotel" or "The Astoria." Facilities offering hospitality to travellers have been a feature of the earliest civilizations. In Greco-Roman culture and ancient Persia, hospitals for recuperation and rest were built at thermal baths.
Japan's Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan, founded in 705, was recognised by the Guinness World Records as the oldest hotel in the world. During the Middle Ages, various religious orders at monasteries and abbeys would offer accommodation for travellers on the road; the precursor to the modern hotel was the inn of medieval Europe dating back to the rule of Ancient Rome. These would provide for the needs of travellers, including food and lodging and fodder for the traveller's horse and fresh horses for the mail coach. Famous London examples of inns include the Tabard. A typical layout of an inn had an inner court with bedrooms on the two sides, with the kitchen and parlour at the front and the stables at the back. For a period of about 200 years from the mid-17th century, coaching inns served as a place for lodging for coach travellers. Coaching inns stabled teams of horses for stagecoaches and mail coaches and replaced tired teams with fresh teams. Traditionally they were seven miles apart, but this depended much on the terrain.
Some English towns had as many as ten such inns and rivalry between them was intense, not only for the income from the stagecoach operators but for the revenu
MGM Grand Las Vegas
The MGM Grand Las Vegas is a hotel and casino located on the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, Nevada. The MGM Grand is the largest single hotel in the United States with 6,852 rooms, it is the third-largest hotel complex in the world by number of rooms and second-largest hotel resort complex in the United States behind the combined The Venetian and The Palazzo. When it opened in 1993, the MGM Grand was the largest hotel complex in the world. Owned and operated by MGM Resorts International, the 30-floor main building is 293 ft high; the property includes five outdoor pools and waterfalls that cover 6.6 acres, a 380,000 sq ft convention center, the MGM Grand Garden Arena, the Grand Spa. It houses numerous shops, night clubs and the largest casino in Clark County, which occupies 171,500 sq ft. Located on the Tropicana - Las Vegas Boulevard intersection, pedestrians are not allowed to cross at street level. Instead, the MGM Grand is linked by overhead pedestrian bridges to its neighboring casinos: to the south across Tropicana Avenue, the Tropicana, to the west across the Strip, New York-New York.
The property was the site of the Golf Club Motel during the 1960s. In 1972, Tom Wiesner co-founded Southwest Securities Development Company, founded Wiesner Investment Company. In November 1973, Southwest Securities Development was planning the Airport Marina Hotel, to be built at the site of the 170-room Golf Club Motel, located near McCarran International Airport. Southwest planned to add a 14-story addition with 518 rooms. Fred Harvey Company would serve as the operator of the hotel, its restaurants, other areas of the resort. Fred Harvey had opened hotels in other parts of the United States under the Airport Marina name. Southwest planned to construct a 28,400 sq ft casino that would operate separately from Fred Harvey; the 700-room Marina, located at 3805 South Las Vegas Boulevard, was built by Wiesner Investment Company and was opened in 1975. In 1989, Wiesner and his partners sold the Marina to Kirk Kerkorian, who bought the Tropicana Country Club, located behind the Marina and across Tropicana Avenue from the Tropicana and San Rémo hotels to obtain the site that would become the home of the MGM Grand.
Kerkorian saw the Marina as a stable and solidly built resort, decided not to destroy the hotel, but to build around it. During that time, the Marina was known as the MGM-Marina Hotel; the Marina closed on November 30, 1990, ground was broken for the new casino hotel complex on October 7, 1991. The Marina hotel building still exists as the west wing of the main hotel building; when the latest MGM Grand opened on December 18, 1993, it was owned by MGM Grand Inc. At that time it had an extensive Wizard of Oz theme, including the green "Emerald City" color of the building and the decorative use of Wizard of Oz memorabilia. After entering the casino's main entrance, one would find themselves in the Oz Casino facing Emerald City. Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion were seen in front of the city; the Emerald City attraction featured an elaborate yellow brick road walk-through, complete with the cornfield, apple orchard, haunted forest, as well as audio-animatronic figures of Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion, the Wicked Witch of the West.
It would end at the door of the city, leading inside for a performance of "The Wizard's Secrets". When MGM Grand began its extensive refurbishment in 1996, the Oz Casino was the first to go; the Emerald City was demolished, the Emerald City Gift Shop was moved to a new shopping section of the casino. The store remained open until early 2003; when the MGM Grand opened, the intention was to create the first true destination hotel in the Las Vegas area by including the MGM Grand Adventures Theme Park behind the casino. The plan was to make the Las Vegas Strip more family friendly by providing activities for those too young to linger inside the casino; the theme park did not reopen for the 2001 season. The site was redeveloped as a luxury condominium and hotel complex called The Signature at MGM Grand, opened in 2006; the resort's original entrance consisted of a giant lion head, made of fiberglass and blocky in appearance, with visitors entering through the lion's mouth. The lion was a cartoon-like version of Leo the Lion.
The Las Vegas Monorail was built to connect MGM Grand to the Bally's hotel-casino in 1995. The coming-out party for the monorail, on behalf of Bally's, consisted of showgirls and guys from Bally's famed show, Jubilee!, helping groups to the monorail. Characters from The Wizard of Oz greeted the groups on the MGM side; the track was updated to become the southernmost section of the Las Vegas Monorail. The MGM Grand station was refurbished, the trains were replaced with Bombardier M-VI's, the track was extended beyond the southern station to provide for track switching for the trains, as well as a starting point for a potential future southern extension to the monorail line. In May 1996, MGM Grand Inc. announced a 30-month, four-phase renovation of the resort that would cost more than $250 million. The project would include replacing the property's lion entrance with a six-story gold lion structure; the first phase was to begin in June 1996, would focus on the resort's restaurant, food court and arcade area, with the addition of several new restaurants.
The second phase would include the $15 million reconstruction of the lion entrance. Other changes would include a 300,000 sq ft convention center.
The Mirage is a 3,044 room Polynesian-themed resort and casino resort located on the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, United States. The resort was built by developer Steve Wynn and is owned and operated by MGM Resorts International; the original marquee sign in front of the Mirage is the largest free standing marquee in the world. The resort is connected by a free tram to the Treasure Island Hotel and Casino neighboring the hotel's property to the north; the Mirage was built by developer Steve Wynn and designed by architect Joel Bergman and interior designer Roger Thomas. It was built on the site occupied by the Castaways and prior to that, the Red Rooster Nite Club; the Mirage was proposed with an initial cost of $565 million. Financier Michael Milken helped finance the project by selling $525 million worth of mortgage bonds; the Mirage was the first resort, built with the money of Wall Street through the use of junk bonds. The project went over budget, was the most expensive hotel-casino in history, with a construction cost of US $630 million.
The hotel's distinctive gold windows get their color from actual gold dust used in the tinting process. The Mirage's construction is considered noteworthy in that Wynn had set a new standard for Vegas resorts, is considered to be the father of today's Las Vegas. Prior to The Mirage's opening, the city was experiencing a decline in tourism that began in the 1970s around the time that the state of New Jersey legalized gambling and tourists began to frequent the casinos of Atlantic City; this was a time when Las Vegas was no longer considered a fashionable destination, so a new, high-profile, project was necessary to jump-start the ailing industry. Wynn planned for the resort to feature boxing matches to compete against the Las Vegas Hilton and the adjacent Caesars Palace. Wynn considered naming the resort the Golden Nugget, after his Golden Nugget hotel-casino in downtown Las Vegas; however and others involved with the new resort knew that it would need a different name. Wynn chose "The Mirage" because of the resort's South Pacific theme.
In 1988, to avoid confusion, Wynn purchased the rights to the Mirage name from two other businesses, the La Mirage Casino and the Mirage Motel. Both businesses received $250,000 to change their names; the Mirage scheduled for an opening in early December 1989, was opened early on November 22, 1989. At the time of its opening, The Mirage was the largest hotel in the world, with 3,044 rooms; the hotel tower, standing 29 stories, was built out in a Y-shape design, a concept, copied by Las Vegas' Treasure Island, Monte Carlo, Mandalay Bay resorts. The hotel's top five floors were used for high roller rooms and penthouse suites; the Mirage was the first new resort to be built on the Las Vegas Strip in 16 years, after the completion of the MGM Grand in 1973. When it opened, The Mirage was the first casino to use security cameras full-time on all table games. Starting in February 1990, The Mirage was the venue for the Siegfried & Roy show, held in the resort's 1,500-seat showroom; the two headliners the use of wild animals.
The show closed in 2003 after performer Roy Horn was critically injured by Montecore, one of the 650-pound white tigers used in the show. In 1993, The Mirage hosted an extended run of the Cirque du Soleil show Nouvelle Expérience in a tent in The Mirage parking lot, it was during this time that Steve Wynn decided to invite Cirque to create Mystère for the soon-to-be-built Treasure Island resort next door. Returning to where they began in Las Vegas, Cirque du Soleil has a permanent production at The Mirage, Love; as of 1999, The Mirage had 6,000 employees. At that time, Wynn was investing $100 million into the resort to build two theaters and to add 130,000 sq ft of convention space. On March 7, 2000, MGM Grand Inc. acquired Mirage Resorts, for $4.4 billion. In March 2000, Danny Gans started performing at the resort. Prior to that time, Gans performed at Casino. Gans took over the marquee in 2004. In December 2006, the Beatles-themed REVOLUTION ultra-lounge opened, it was the first time Cirque du Soleil was involved in the development of a nightlife venue, operated by The Light Group.
Gans left The Mirage in February 2009 to star in a show at the Encore Las Vegas. In 2009, ventriloquist and 2007 America's Got Talent winner Terry Fator began a 5-year run at the hotel. In 2009, The Mirage was featured on The Amazing Race 15, where one team member had to bungee the other into the air to grab a bouquet of flowers presented in the Love theater. In November 2012 The Mirage casino became the second Las Vegas casino to offer Geoff Hall's Blackjack variant Free Bet Blackjack, after the Golden Nugget Casino. In 2014, The Mirage was featured in The Amazing Race 24, where teams had to replace the lightbulbs in the letter'I' in'Mirage'. In 2015 MGM Resorts International announced that it would place the Mirage and other properties into a real estate investment trust. MGM would continue to operate The Mirage. Notable features include: Siegfried & Roy's Secret Garden and Dolphin Habitat; the Secret Garden was designed by Manny Caamano. During July 2017, the habitat announced the successful birth of a dolphin calf.
An artificial volcano along the Strip that "erupts" nightly at 8:00PM, 9:00PM, 10:00PM beginning June 1, 2018. After sister property Bellagio opened, the design firm WET Enterprises improved the technology behind the volcano effect to make it more spectacular
El Cortez (Las Vegas)
El Cortez, a hotel and casino, is a small downtown Las Vegas gaming venue a block from the Fremont Street Experience and Las Vegas Boulevard. Slots, table games, a race and sports book occupy one floor of the main pavilion, it is one of the older casino-hotel properties in Las Vegas having continuously operated at the same Fremont Street location since 1941. Spanish Colonial Revival in style, it reflects a 1952 remodel when the façade was modernized. On February 22, 2013, the structure was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. Marion Hicks and J. C. Grayson built El Cortez, downtown Las Vegas' first major resort, in 1941 for $245,000; the location at 6th Street and Fremont was considered too far from downtown, but it became so profitable that Bugsy Siegel, Meyer Lansky, Gus Greenbaum and Moe Sedway bought the property in 1945 from J. Kel Houssels for $600,000. John Kell Houssels, Sr. had opened the 59-room hotel and casino before the sale to the major organized crime figures. Houssels purchased the hotel back from Siegel's group in 1946 for $766,000.
In 1963, the Pavilion Rooms were added. Another 15-story tower addition was completed in 1980; the 64-room Cabana Suites were completed in the former Ogden House in 2009, bringing the total room count to its current 364. Gaughan, a casino owner and operator since the early 1950s, lived in El Cortez's tower penthouse and was known to be on the casino floor daily; the property is one of the few casinos to have never changed its exterior façade in Las Vegas, retaining the same signage and ranch-themed architecture for over seventy years. Jackie Gaughan's son Michael Gaughan ran the sports and race book in the current casino under the name South Point Race and Sports Book during the late 2000s, but the sports book is now run by Station Casinos. El Cortez has undergone several renovations, with the latest major remodeling completed in 2006. New carpet, marble flooring, gaming machines, refurbished guest rooms and an upgraded kitchen for the restaurant were added. Although only a block away from the Fremont Street Experience, the hotel is part of the newly-created Fremont East section of downtown.
It has created a main entrance off Las Vegas Boulevard by opening a block-long pedestrian walkway from the boulevard to the hotel's main entrance on 6th Street. El Cortez is well known in the casino industry as the most prominent "break-in house" for new table-game dealers to get experience before moving onto bigger properties; the separate hotel in the back, the 100-room Ogden House, has been renovated into the 64-suite Cabana Suites. In 2008, Jackie Gaughan sold its properties to Kenny Epstein. Gaughan continued to live at the casino and still played poker in the poker room until his death on March 12, 2014. Media related to El Cortez at Wikimedia Commons Official website
The Linq is a 2,640-room hotel and shopping promenade on the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, Nevada. It is operated by Caesars Entertainment Corporation; as of 2012, the casino is 32,890 sq ft with 830 slot machines, 55 table games, a race and sports book. It opened in 1959 as the 180-room Flamingo Capri motel, located adjacent to the Flamingo hotel and casino. Ralph Engelstad purchased the property in 1971, added a casino the following year. In 1977, the hotel had 650 rooms, after the completion of its Imperial Palace Tower; the resort was reopened as the Asian-themed Imperial Palace in 1979. Several additional hotel towers were added during the 1980s, bringing the resort's room count to an ultimate total of 2,637, after the completion of a fifth and final hotel tower in 1987. At the time of Engelstad's death in 2002, the resort had 2,600 employees and was the second-largest owned hotel in the world. In 2012, the resort was renamed as The Quad; the resort was renamed again after a $223 million renovation.
The property began as the $2 million, 180-room Flamingo Capri motel, owned by George E. Goldberg and Bill Capri; the motel was built directly north of Casino, where Capri was an employee. The motel began construction in May 1959, with a planned completion date of August 15, 1959. Douglas Honnold and John Rex, both of Beverly Hills, were the architects. Maurice N. Aroff of Beverly Hills was the general contractor; the Flamingo Capri opened in 1959. The original Flamingo agreed to provide hotel services to guests at the Capri. Ralph Engelstad purchased the motel in 1971, added a casino in 1972. Prior to the addition of a casino, the motel had 250 employees. In 1973, four motel buildings from the Flamingo Capri were relocated and converted to become part of Engelstad's other property, the Kona Kai motel. Engelstad's construction company added a three-story wing at the east end of the motel, as well as a northern addition, both of which opened in 1974 along with the Shangri-la pool. By 1976, the motel was being operated as part of the Best Western hotel chain, while retaining the Flamingo Capri name.
The new Imperial Palace Tower, which raised the number of rooms from 300 to 650, was completed in July 1977. The property re-opened as the Asian-themed Imperial Palace Hotel and Casino on November 1, 1979, with the number of employees increasing to 1,000. Merlin J. Barth was the architect of the resort, themed after an Asian palace. Engelstad chose the Oriental theme, Barth chose blue tile imported from Japan for the roof of the resort, having been influenced by Japanese temples; the interior featured the Oriental theme as well, included carved dragons and giant wind chime chandeliers. At the time of opening, the resort included Court of a Thousand Treasures, a four-story shopping arcade with 60 stores, overlooking the east end of the 30,000 sq ft casino; the Imperial Theatre showroom with 850 seats was opened in June 1980. In addition to live shows, the showroom was expanded to be used for filming of sports and entertainment television specials. A second hotel tower with 850 rooms was added in early 1981.
The Auto Collections opened on December 1, 1981, on the fifth floor of a new parking garage, added that year. A 650-room hotel tower opened in August 1982, bringing the total room count to more than 1,500. By 1982, the shopping arcade included the free Imperial Palace School of Gaming, for gamblers who did not know how to play; the school operated as a mini casino overlooking the main 40,000 sq ft casino. During the 1980s, the resort served as the starting and finishing location of the annual Imperial Palace Antique Auto Run. In 1984, a couple from Missouri were assaulted in their guest room by a man dressed as a hotel employee, they were beaten and gagged, the wife was raped. The assailant was never caught; the couple sued the Imperial Palace. The lawsuit lasted until at least 1989, with allegations that hotel employees destroyed evidence relating to their security practices; the case was settled on undisclosed terms. The lawsuit would lead indirectly to more trouble for the casino. In 1988, several employees, angry about being placed on leave as punishment for talking to the plaintiff attorney, began speaking to the Gaming Control Board and local media about two Nazi-themed parties Engelstad had held at the Imperial Palace.
The parties were held in Engelstad's so-called "war room", which featured a large collection of World War II Nazi memorabilia, including a portrait of Engelstad in the likeness of Hitler. A national controversy ensued. Engelstad claimed the collection was purely of historical interest, not meant to glorify the Nazis; the Gaming Control Board recommended that Engelstad lose his gaming license and be fined $200,000 for reflecting poorly on the reputation of the Nevada gaming industry. An agreement was reached whereby Engelstad kept his license, but paid $1.5 million in penalties. In 1985, the parking garage was expanded to include more than 1,000 additional parking spaces, becoming one of the largest parking facilities in Las Vegas. In December 1985, the foundation was laid for a 560-room hotel addition, completed in 1986 as the resort's fourth tower, bringing the room count total to 2,100; the Imperial Palace became the seventh largest hotel in the world, had more than 2,200 employees. In 1986, the casino was expanded by 15,000 square feet, convention facilities were increased from 25,000 sq ft to 30,000 sq ft.
A fifth and final hotel tower, standing 19 stories with 547 rooms, was completed in
Las Vegas the City of Las Vegas and known as Vegas, is the 28th-most populated city in the United States, the most populated city in the state of Nevada, the county seat of Clark County. The city anchors the Las Vegas Valley metropolitan area and is the largest city within the greater Mojave Desert. Las Vegas is an internationally renowned major resort city, known for its gambling, fine dining and nightlife; the Las Vegas Valley as a whole serves as the leading financial and cultural center for Nevada. The city bills itself as The Entertainment Capital of the World, is famous for its mega casino–hotels and associated activities, it is a top three destination in the United States for business conventions and a global leader in the hospitality industry, claiming more AAA Five Diamond hotels than any other city in the world. Today, Las Vegas annually ranks as one of the world's most visited tourist destinations; the city's tolerance for numerous forms of adult entertainment earned it the title of Sin City, has made Las Vegas a popular setting for literature, television programs, music videos.
Las Vegas was settled in 1905 and incorporated in 1911. At the close of the 20th century, it was the most populated American city founded within that century. Population growth has accelerated since the 1960s, between 1990 and 2000 the population nearly doubled, increasing by 85.2%. Rapid growth has continued into the 21st century, according to a 2018 estimate, the population is 648,224 with a regional population of 2,227,053; as with most major metropolitan areas, the name of the primary city is used to describe areas beyond official city limits. In the case of Las Vegas, this applies to the areas on and near the Las Vegas Strip, located within the unincorporated communities of Paradise and Winchester; the earliest visitors to the Las Vegas area were nomadic Paleo-Indians, who traveled there 10,000 years ago, leaving behind petroglyphs. Anasazi and Paiute tribes followed at least 2,000 years ago. A young Mexican scout named Rafael Rivera is credited as the first non-Native American to encounter the valley, in 1829.
Trader Antonio Armijo led a 60-man party along the Spanish Trail to Los Angeles, California in 1829. The area was named Las Vegas, Spanish for "the meadows," as it featured abundant wild grasses, as well as the desert spring waters needed by westward travelers; the year 1844 marked the arrival of John C. Frémont, whose writings helped lure pioneers to the area. Downtown Las Vegas's Fremont Street is named after him. Eleven years members of the LDS Church chose Las Vegas as the site to build a fort halfway between Salt Lake City and Los Angeles, where they would travel to gather supplies; the fort was abandoned several years afterward. The remainder of this Old Mormon Fort can still be seen at the intersection of Las Vegas Boulevard and Washington Avenue. Las Vegas was founded as a city in 1905, when 110 acres of land adjacent to the Union Pacific Railroad tracks were auctioned in what would become the downtown area. In 1911, Las Vegas was incorporated as a city. 1931 was a pivotal year for Las Vegas.
At that time, Nevada legalized casino gambling and reduced residency requirements for divorce to six weeks. This year witnessed the beginning of construction on nearby Hoover Dam; the influx of construction workers and their families helped Las Vegas avoid economic calamity during the Great Depression. The construction work was completed in 1935. In 1941, the Las Vegas Army Air Corps Gunnery School was established. Known as Nellis Air Force Base, it is home to the aerobatic team called the Thunderbirds. Following World War II, lavishly decorated hotels, gambling casinos, big-name entertainment became synonymous with Las Vegas. In the 1950s the Moulin Rouge opened and became the first racially integrated casino-hotel in Las Vegas. In 1951, nuclear weapons testing began at the Nevada Test Site, 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas. During this time the city was nicknamed the "Atomic City". Residents and visitors were able to witness the mushroom clouds until 1963, when the limited Test Ban Treaty required that nuclear tests be moved underground.
The iconic "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign, never located within municipal limits, was created in 1959 by Betty Willis. During the 1960s, corporations and business powerhouses such as Howard Hughes were building and buying hotel-casino properties. Gambling was referred to as "gaming"; the year 1995 marked the opening of the Fremont Street Experience in Las Vegas's downtown area. This canopied five-block area features 12.5 million LED lights and 550,000 watts of sound from dusk until midnight during shows held on the top of each hour. Due to the realization of many revitalization efforts, 2012 was dubbed "The Year of Downtown." Hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of projects made their debut at this time. They included The Smith Center for the Performing Arts and DISCOVERY Children's Museum, Mob Museum, Neon Museum, a new City Hall complex and renovations for a new Zappos.com corporate headquarters in the old City Hall building. Las Vegas is situated within Clark County in a basin on the floor of the Mojave Desert and is surrounded by mountain ranges on all sides.
Much of the landscape is arid with desert vegetation and wildlife. It can be subjected to torrential flash floods, although much has been done to mitigate the effects of flash floods through improved drainage systems; the peaks surrounding Las Vegas reach elevations of o