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Reader Poll June 25, 2000

Question in black type - Answer from our Readers in blue type  

#1. Several older Las Vegas casinos have been knocked down or imploded over the past years, Dunes, Aladdin, Hacienda, Sands, Landmark.  Soon the Desert Inn will be the next casino to be replaced with a modern structure.  Are you in favor of removing the old casinos with the new mega resort casinos?  Why or Why not?

*  The rooms, etc. at the Dunes, et al were really getting old and it was time to replace. But, I saw the Desert Inn last year and it had just been renovated and looked gorgeous. Why throw away history when it is still beautiful.  Marvine Locklin

*  While we have recently begun visiting Las Vegas on a regular basis, we find the older resorts more enjoyable. The mega resorts are interesting to visit, we prefer to stay at other places.  Jeff M Riggs

*  As a long-time Las Vegas resident, I miss most of the old hotels that were imploded. They held memories of people and days that will never return.  However, I can understand the need to attract visitors by offering up-to-date accommodations and attractions. I can't say the change is better for residents, as it's brought increased traffic and a faster pace of life that wasn't here years ago. PSMOORE

*  As far as I'm concerned they spend way too much money on the new casinos. Once you've seen one they are all basically the same. The real gambler could care less what the casino looks like from the outside or inside, that's why I stay downtown. For the first time Vegas tourist the new casinos give them something to do and see. Kris

*  It's an economical issue. Yes, tear down if the mgmt, clientele and bells and whistles are obsolete. Otherwise, renovate the main floor and make the 2nd floor into a prize casino catch.  Alan Lee Judson

*  If the property is in need of major repairs, may as well tear it down.  Don't understand why they would tear down Desert Inn. It appears to be in good condition and is pretty classy. Wish it had more slot machines but otherwise it seems like a nice place. I like the Westward Ho because of its reasonable rates and the convenience of parking near the rooms. It's also convenient for walking to other nearby casinos. I would hope that they would not consider demolishing and rebuilding. Would prefer that they remodel and/or maintain the rooms. They seem to be doing a good job in that respect. The newer bigger casinos are nice to visit but don't like staying in the high rise buildings and having to depend on valet parking or walking long distances to parking lots. Also the new casinos don't seem to pay out very well, particularly the Paris.  Dave Mraz 

*  Wrecking the old casinos to build new ones means more money spent by vacationers. The price is always higher to stay at the new hotels. Too bad they just don't keep the old ones up to date. We are finding it more difficult every year to scrape up the money for our Vegas vacation. Even though the new hotels are gorgeous, there's no place for the little guy anymore. Not like the old days. We are coming out in August and are staying at the oldest hotel on the strip ( New Frontier ) and hope it's going to be satisfactory. Just can't afford to stay at the new hotels. Too bad !  Karen V Bujnoski

*  Replacing casinos is very good , but must be tempered with common sense. I always go back to see the statues in Caesars and the old Aladdin's had the best lounge show in town.   hayspurple

*  Many of the old are of much better construction then the new. Some older casino's have a certain warmth about them, by contrast with the new ones. You felt comfortable being there. The new are mostly a lot of highly expensive gimmicks. Nice the first time around, but then nothing. This is all paid for by us regular visitors. The slots are so tight, they are starting to squeak. They are slowly killing the goose that lays the golden eggs.   zwillow

*  We like the older ones best when we visit Las Vegas. We visit three to four times a year for the past 12 years. The new ones are nice to see from the outside but many look cheap when you get inside. Keep the old ones if they can be restored or updated like the Sahara. We like what was done with the downtown area. After one visit to some of the new casinos we go back to the older ones to gamble and stay. Like one of the readers said the new rooms are over priced for what you get.  James R Robertson

*  Well not the DI !!!  Why? It's just been remodeled. The others were at least in dire need of upgrading.   Marilyn Turner

*  Hello.  The more they open mega casino the less a small time gambler like me wants to visit Vegas.   I am treated nice but not as if  I'm important or really need because the person behind me might be a high roller, or at lest a higher player.  also the restaurant and room prices have gone to a level that reflect a casino interested in making money on ever thing , and comp high roller forget little people . all thing change but after thirty year of visiting LV.  I like it better when they were happy to see me instead of rating me as a person to paying attention to , or smiling and move away from me. I was in New York,  New York last year and went into a fast food court order a coffee to walk with .i almost fainted when they charge $2.00 for and 8oz striform cup .well you get my point.  A regular guy.  Smhfcmdcnt

*  You used to have class now all there is is glitz. I don't know I don't think there is anything wrong with taking something special and making it more special instead of demolishing.  Diana

*  In cases like the El Rancho, I am in favor of tearing down the old casino to make way for the new. In the case of the Desert Inn, I would not understand doing that. Why did they spend so much money for the facelift and addition just to tear it all down?  At first I was upset when I learned that the Sands was going to be imploded. Now that I see the new Venetian, I think that was a good move.  Rosemary Schmit

*  No. The Desert Inn has recently under gone a very nice renovation. Leave the present structure alone and add to it in the back.   Jack Arlen

*  No! This is history. Some of the old ones are so neat and have seen so much. If only the walls could talk.     Jde1122

*  I much prefer the older, smaller casinos. The new ones are just to big and involve to much walking to get 'any where'. And they are to far apart in most cases.   The Hacienda was my favorite. but now I stay at Fitzgerald's which is the size I like.   Over the years I have used MGM, Rio, Xcaliber, Circus, Rivera, Treasure Island, etc. and I feel lost in them.   wd4bum

*  My husband and I have been coming out to Vegas for the past 30 years.  While, we have enjoyed the older places, there is a lot to be said for the new ones. We like to see hotels and casinos kept up, clean and inviting.  Some of the older places have become run down and seem to be dark and uninviting. The new places are clean, light, airy and inviting with something for every one. Since I am the gambler in the family, my husband needs things to do while I am at the casino. The newer places have shops, wonderful pools, spas, and things for him to do.  Too bad we can't have the illusion of old with advantages of the new.  All in all we still love Vegas. No matter what they do to it!!  Mr. and Mrs. C. of Texas

*  Not in favor, the Desert Inn still looks good and has been maintained quite well from what I have seen. I can't see tearing down to rebuild and charge me more to stay at a "new" overpriced hotel!!!  Bryce Dixon

*  While it's tough to see the old favorites disappear, I'm always amazed at the new ones that keep coming along. I've been visiting Vegas since I was 10 years old (some 40+ years) and have seen lots of them come and go. I must admit I LOVE the new hotels and always look forward with enthusiasm and eagerness until they open.   As for the old digs, I like the neon museum since the signs are a lot of what I remember best. Perhaps a bigger, better promoted display of the signs would help off-set some of the sense of loss we feel when it's time for the building to go.   Kathie Sucidlo

*  Tear down the old casinos - This makes way for newer and finer accommodations and attracts more and more families and makes each trip a new adventure with more and more to see and do.  Bruce May

*  I think part of the call to Vegas is the lure of the nostalgic past. A lot of people want to see the old lights and hotels that they remember from postcards and past vacations. Everything doesn't have to be mega!   Steven Armbrister

*  I wish there would keep some of them; it's too late for most. They would have been a testament to the history of Las Vegas, architecture & of casinos. I think it is important to keep a balance of new & old. Another problem with all the new casinos being built is the price of staying there. The room rates keep going higher out of our price range! We are middle class, our wages aren't rising at the same pace as prices in Vegas; pretty soon we may be priced out of being able to vacation there.   Marlyce

*  I kind of like the older properties because they generally have lower room rates. Take the Plaza for instance. Certainly not a thing of splendor. But when I stay in Las Vegas the only time I spend in the room is when I am sleeping so it does fine for me.    Roger Clough

*  I think a few of the old need to stay. For instance, old Las Vegas, The Fremont Experience, would make Las Vegas incomplete were it to go. As far as the other old ones, keep some of them. They are the only ones where the paybacks on slots are any good. The new casinos are tight they have a lot of bills to pay while the older casinos have been paid for years ago. Keep some of the good old ones.    dwarfel

*  Definitely NOT! Everything in Las Vegas does NOT have to be about money - it should be about the consumer. The customer needs to be a person NOT a number! What about the history of Las Vegas? And since it's always been thought of as part of the WEST - what has happened to that notion? The only hotel that still maintains part of its western heritage is the Frontier (which I heard was to be torn down, but that is now on hold - thank heavens!!!). I have stayed there for the past 13 years - and the people know me - I am NOT a high roller, but I am a good tipper and I get the service I pay for. The employees know me as a person - not as Room #1234 and that homey feeling is the reason I keep coming back and also refer my friends. I have a few friends that could afford (very easily) to stay at Mandalay Bay or one of the other higher priced hotels, but they in turn choose to stay at the Frontier because of the fact that they are treated as Mr. SO & SO - not just another number! It's more of a people oriented hotel and part of the Las Vegas history - I stayed there the year I turned 21 - ended up talking with Frank Sinatra Jr. - a memory I'll never forget - and that's been over 30 years ago!  Don't let history go by the wayside for the almighty dollar - it's not worth it. Individuals are always worth more in the long run. Leave what's left of Las Vegas' history alone - preserve it while you still can - pictures can only do so much!  And that's my two cents - for what it's worth!    Carla Hall

There is definitely a place for the old to exist alongside the new. There is so much history behind places like the Desert Inn and Sands. The new places will never have the charisma of the old casinos. I watched a program last night on the Rat Pack - pure nostalgia. I remember very happy times at the Sands. We are staying at the Desert Inn this July and it is sad that it is likely the last time. I think Vegas will lose out in the end with all mega resorts, kids everywhere and sky high prices. Elaine Brotchie England UK


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