The Nevada Gaming Control Board has lodged its first COVID-19-related complaint against a Las Vegas Strip property. The regulatory agency filed a complaint Monday against the Sahara Las Vegas with the Nevada Gaming Commission.
On questions about when international flights to Las Vegas would resume, whether rodeos could fill seats and when conferences of more than 50 people would be back, Hill responded that “projecting things based on a calendar at this point is more difficult than projecting things based on the health situation.”
Cashless gaming has been used on slot machines throughout the casino industry for at least two decades, although it wasn’t initially accepted by customers. When the original systems, dubbed ticket-in/ticket-out, were introduced, they confused older slot players, who didn’t understand why winnings came out in the form of a ticket voucher, rather than cash, which they had originally loaded into the machine.
For nearly three months — a time period normally marked by March Madness, the debut of Major League Baseball and professional hockey and basketball playoffs — all was quiet in Nevada’s sportsbooks. Now, the familiar hum of activity inside these sports-viewing meccas is returning despite a coronavirus-altered athletic landscape.
The Nevada Gaming Control Board issued an industry notice Wednesday with an updated health and safety policy. It adds requirements casinos must follow regarding face masks without outright mandating them for guests.
As soon as the green light turned on, Nevada’s taverns, bars and other restricted gaming locations flipped on slot machines that had been silenced for 78 days as part of the casino industry closure amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Cheers erupted outside The D Las Vegas as the clock approached midnight. A block away, about 50 people stood in line waiting to enter the Downtown Grand — and as Wednesday turned to Thursday, their more than two-month hiatus from casinos came to an end.
The governor’s announcement in late May that casinos could reopen June 4 initiated a flurry of activity on and off the Strip as sprawling resorts — some offering amenities akin to a small city — prepared to welcome back guests.
The Strip reopens this week following an unprecedented two-a-half-month shutdown to slow the spreading coronavirus pandemic. Remaining on the sidelines, however, are the arenas, showrooms and convention spaces utilized for non-gaming attractions that have become part of its financial lifeblood and attracted so many tourists last year.
Signaling the deep economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, statewide gambling revenue in April dropped 99.61 percent compared to what casino and online operators collected in April last year, the Gaming Control Board reported.
Resorts must check guests’ temperature upon arrival or have a medical professional on property at all times and require guests to complete a symptom self-assessment, according to an updated policy released Wednesday by the Nevada Gaming Control Board as casinos gear up for reopening.
Nevada’s casinos could welcome back customers as soon as June 4, Gov. Steve Sisolak announced Friday afternoon. The governor plans to hold a press conference Tuesday to discuss entering Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan.