Directed by Norman Foster and released in 1952,
Harley Williams goes by the Nickname "Tumbleweed", not sure why the but it works for him. He seems like a small town bronco buster who has a Big City Rodeo fetish.
He enters Vegas by bus, the LAS VEGAS - TOONAPA - RENO - STAGE LINES, to be exact.
Steps into downtown Las Vegas at what would be the Plaza (Union Bus Station) and the shot widens to show Las Vegas Club on the left, Sal Sagev on the right and and in between lies 1950's autos parked along the side of 1950's Fremont Street. Standing out towards the back is a Young Vegas Vic behind the Monte Carlo Club.
He comes to Vegas with what he thought was...
The American Casino Guide has been coming out every year since 1992. The driving force behind this book is a man named Steve Bourie, a name I first saw while on a flight to Vegas reading a magazine from the back pouch of the seat in front of me. This was approximately 10 years ago and the article was all about a Florida Casino and his adventure at this Casino. Makes sense seeing as Mr. Bourie worked in Marketing within the Casino Industry. He has written articles for many gambling and gaming magazines, and has over 30 years experience in Gaming. I subscribe to the American Casino Guide YOUTUBE channel and his interviews and informative videos are second to none. If you are serious about your gambling or just want to learn more about advantage play and Casino discounts I highly recommend them.
I have a passion for both gambling as well as saving money, so I purchase this book every year as well as the Las Vegas Advisor book as money saving tools.
This book is a little different from the Las Vegas Advisor book in the sense the American Casino Guide breaks down into 3 parts.
If you know me, then you know I am a fan of bargains and always try to get that “deal of the day”.
Not a cheap skate or tightwad, just frugal and find it rewarding when I can save money and apply it towards something I might not otherwise spend it on.
I am also a fan of a man named Anthony Curtis, I first noticed his name popping up around the mid 90s when I had my hand in the sports gambling market. Forums were all the rage back then and you could really get some good sports gambling advice from some of the local Vegas bettors and insiders like Fezzik, JK (Jon Kelly), Jimmy Vaccaro, Papa Jo, and my favorite Sports betting personality Dave “The Meatman” Scandaliato.
Anthony Curtis was on a few Vegas related documentaries and tv specials about saving money, spotting deals or catching scammers etc. He also published a newsletter and eventually a coupon book called the Las Vegas Advisor to go along with a membership to his website and forums. I already read the forums and I had nothing to lose by buying the book of coupons since there has always been one coupon that would more than pay for the book anyway. Well, I'm happy to say nothing has changed. The book still comes out every year and is a modest 37 bucks for a year membership to the newsletter.
This year I have decided to a note few of the better deals and discounts as I use them on my next 2 trips. I have compiled a list of the bargains below and plan on using many of them.
One of my favorite places in Las Vegas to relax or just "zone out" if you will, is a walkway between El Cortez and Las Vegas Boulevard downtown. The, palm tree lined, plaza has a few benches and picnic tables to soak up some sun or catch a quick minute of alone time away from the crazy of Fremont Street. The Plaza is named after former Casino owner Jackie Gaughan and some weird reason, without sounding to dramatic, I like to walk through it and think about his journey.
Jackie Gaughan moved to Las Vegas in 1950. He bought a 3% share of the Flamingo and worked there as well. After an argument with an associate of Bugsy Siegel named Davie "The Jew" Berman. He quit his job (which was probably smart) but kept his 3% share in the property (which was very smart).
I planned on writing more on this but latest reports say Steve Wynn's next big thing might not be complete until 2021 so this is a work in progress.
The plan for Wynn's "Paradise Park" was announced over a year ago and revisited in Mr. Wynn's latest quarterly report phone conference. It has yet to be named (officially) but the details are pretty huge.
Basically a 1600ft by 700ft luxury lagoon. In fact that will be my name for it, "Luxury Lagoon".
A 47 story tower built between the Encore and Wynn containing a Casino, restaurants, 1500 room hotel as well as retail and convention space.
You might be shocked to learn there is a Chinatown in Las Vegas, but yes there is, and it's quite fun.
Chinatown Plaza, the brainchild of a Taiwanese investment group, opened in 1995 as a strip mall geared towards the Pan-Asian community. Other strip malls, restaurants, bars and offices continued growing westward on Spring Mountain Road from the freeway all the way to Jones.
Less than five years later, in 1999, Governor Guinn officially designated this area Chinatown.
This is no San Francisco or Chicago Chinatown. You wont find an outdoor market with half a duck hanging from a hook. Very clean and organized business fronts spanning about 2 miles.
You could walk it in about half hour but dont rush it, enjoy the smells of the great restaurants and the scenery.
You may have noticed Ellis Island recently took down some signage to make way for some big renovations and additions to the family owned and run property. This seems like a good time to dive into a little history behind Ellis Island.
50 years ago Frank Ellis opened a small bar on Koval avenue named Village Pub, mainly a blue collar neighborhood bar from 1967 through the 70's and into the 80's. He then turned over daily operations to his son Gary in 1985.
Gary Ellis had the idea of re-branding the bar ELLIS ISLAND, adding slot machines the following year. Ellis Island was a local hot spot and in 1997 they doubled their gaming machines and added table games as part of a $12 million renovation.
Came to Vegas in 1947 started working downtown in 1951, an icon standing tall as the ambassador to all things Sin-City.
No it's not Oscar Goodman although he is actually older. Its Vegas Vic. The instantly recognizable figure-head of downtown Las Vegas. But whats the story behind Cowboy Vic?
In 1947 he was drawn up (literally) as a marketing scheme, through the Chamber of Congress. A new symbol of friendly Las Vegas. Vic's face started popping up on matchbooks, postcards, travel ads and just about anything used to promote Las Vegas. Then in 1951, the owners of the Pioneer Club had him turned into a 40 foot tall neon mascot with a voice box and actual smoking cigarette. He was placed at his watch, over the doors to The Pioneer Club, and began a long residency downtown.
If you like to explore while Downtown, You can now get around a little quicker and safer then you could before. I Love exploring the entire downtown area, including the "rough" areas. I just consider it part of Vegas lore and the History that made Downtown what it is today. Atomic Liquor and Bunkhouse, Pawn Plaza and Pawn shop, Chicago Joes and El Sombrero and on and on. I have jumped buses and even walked in 110 degree heat just to experience these places in the pass. I always feel like an Idiot when I get to where Im going and im full of sweat and my feet are killing me because I'm way older then I was when I lived in the area. There are so many great restaurants, parks and shopping spots throughout the Downtown I cant believe it took this long to conjure up a free shuttle. From what I understand locals and visitors alike are welcome to use the service. It makes 7 important stops as of today.
1. The Bonneville Transit Center,
2. Art Way and Boulder Ave.
3. Pawn Plaza, 4. Fremont East. 5. The Mob Museum, 6. Fremont Street Experience, (Main Street) and 7. Las Vegas North Premium Outlets. I am on board this idea in a huge way. I can now do more spur of the moment trips and cut down on bus rides. 2 shuttles will be running constantly so plan about 20 minutes between stops.
The big picture calls for expansion to The Natural History Museum and possibly Cashman sports complex, which could be available after the initial 6 month trial run. The Mayor said she is hoping advertisement dollars will keep the shuttles a float for a long time to come.
If I was her I would talk with Mr. Tony Hsieh, I heard he's on board with developing the downtown area, or so he says.
So for this trip's Dive I tried out the Travelodge close to Circus Circus, actual address 2830 Las Vegas BLVD South.
Yep it's on the Strip and yep it was CHEAP!
Sunday Night $42 and NO RESORT FEES. I was there at about noon and asked to get in early but shot down being told she didn't have any rooms clean yet. Hmmm, really? So I asked if I could pay extra to get checked in early so I could get to the event I was in town for. She tells me for $20 I could. I was super beat at this point so I agreed and didn't think arguing about it would help, got in and showered up. Great shower, you could tell it was completely remodeled recently, Great looking stone tiled shower (no tub) but the shower had great water pressure but very low shower head. Room itself with a Large very, very comfy King bed. Small flat screen tv with about 10 channels to choose from. A small dark corner cubbie hole with a safe and just enough room to hang a few items of clothing. Pending your previous Vegas experiences the view could be Amazing or Ghetto. Directly out my bathroom window was an empty lot with literally blowing tumbleweeds. Out the front window, just beyond the parking lot, the large Neon foot of the Circus Circus Clown. No matter the view, if it contains Old Neon it's a great view to me.
I still consider this a Dive Stay even know the place is not as bad as many Ive been to. I would stay again, as a matter of fact I signed up for their rewards/points program just to get emails on rate specials.
The Travelodge is perfect for a first visit or a cheap stay as I wanted to do. They have a pretty great pool but I did not use it. Its open from 9a-9p and its been remodeled as well recently. It has 2 levels but no elevator and all the rooms are outside (Motel Style). Free WiFI was included and as I mentioned there is NO resort fee so thats a great perk. They have a few necessities in the lobby for sale such as waters, Tylenol, sunscreen, snacks etc.