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April 19, 2017 16:48 Source of Bellagio Fire Identified:

A light-fixture malfunction has been identified as the cause of last week’s fire at Bellagio. The fire was extinguished 19 minutes after it started, but still caused an estimated $450,000 in damage, all to the exterior of the hotel.

April 19, 2017 13:27 Scorpions:

This ain't the rock band. Today's Question of the Day tells you just about everything you need to know about scorpions (the animals) with regard to how they inhabit Las Vegas. Click on the "Question of the Day" box on the left side of the home page (or follow the link above) to access the feature.

April 19, 2017 10:11 Dancer Post Prompts Debate:

In Bob Dancer's weekly blog post at GamblingWithAnEdge.com, he relates a story he'd intended to tell on the podcast The Moth. It's an account of how he transitioned from gambling professionally (playing backgammon) in the disco era to a regular job. This post wasn't as well-received as usual by regular readers, so there's also an interesing back-and-forth in the attending comments.

April 19, 2017 08:06 First Red Dragon Opening:

The first location of the Dotty's-controlled Red Dragon brand is poised to debut at Spring Mtn. and Jones in the space that used to be the New York City bar. The official name appears to be the Red Dragon Sports Bar, which sounds distinctly un-Dotty's-like. Today's LV Review-Journal ran a story about the Red Dragon takeover of the Dealer's Choice Lounge that sheds a little more light.

April 18, 2017 16:05 IGT Sells Social Casino:

International Game Technology has sold its social-gambling platform DoubleDown for $825 million, which it purchased in a roundly criticized deal in 2012 for $500 million. The buyer is DoubleU Games out of South Korea, to which IGT will license its content.

April 18, 2017 13:45 Beer Dinner at Tuscany:

If you're looking for something cool to do tonight, Pub 365 at Tuscany is offering a dinner featuring craft beers from the Four Peaks Brewing Company. The four-course dinner comes with beer pairings for each course, plus a welcoming brew. That's a complete dinner plus five craft beers for $45. The event starts at 7 p.m.

April 18, 2017 12:49 Tax Day:

Don't forget to get your tax return filed today. This year there are fewer Tax Day deals than usual. The best is at Downtown Grand, where you’ll get 5% of the amount of your refund-check in slot free-play when you cash it there (doesn't have to be today). Maximum FP is $100. The El Cortez offers a similar promo with a max bonus of $50. Club Fortune is holding drawings every 30 minutes today, from 3 to 8 p.m., for cash prizes totaling $15,000. Outside of the casinos, Grimaldi's is offering a 16" pizza for $10.40.

 

April 18, 2017 08:11 Hard Rock Steakhouse Closing:

Hard Rock’s 35 Steaks + Martinis will close at the end of this month. It will be replaced by MB Steak in May, which will be in a different location. No announcement has been made regarding what will go in the former 35 Steaks space.

April 17, 2017 13:40 Plaza Closes Beer Garden:

The Beer Garden at the Plaza has closed. There's been no word on what will be done with the space.

April 17, 2017 12:33 Gaming Pioneer Houssels Jr. Passes:

Las Vegas gaming pioneer J.K. Houssels Jr. has died at age 94. Houssels was the president of several resorts, including the Tropicana, the Union Plaza, and the Showboat. Firmly entrenched in the building of Las Vegas, Houssels Jr. followed his father into the buisness after  John Kell Houssels Sr. converted the downtown Smoke Shop into the Las Vegas Club. He later oversaw the expansion of the Showboat brand to other gambling jurisdictions, including the Atlantic City. His wife, Nancy, founded the Nevada Ballet Theatre.

 

April 17, 2017 09:07 Jean Scott on Airline Bumping:

Following the forceful bumping of the United Airlines passenger that made national news, Jean Scott proffers her opinion on the situation in her latest blog post. Get Jean's take on the current state of airline bumping, with input from readers, at GamblingWithAnEdge.com.

April 16, 2017 12:57 Dotty's Eats Another One:

Another local bar is closing and will become part of the Dotty's empire. After more than 30 years in business, Dealer's Choice Lounge on W. Spring Mtn. Rd. is closing this week and will reopen as a Red Dragon, a new brand owned by Dotty's that's intended to appeal to the Asian communtity in that Chinatown area. We've also heard that another Dotty's brand called Bourbon Street is on the way.

April 16, 2017 11:23 'Osaka Strip' Proposed:

An analysis by Global Market Advisors LLC suggests that Japan should seek to build its casinos in close proximity to one another to maximize its gambling potential. The study specifically mentions an “Osaka Strip,” that would be patterned after the Las Vegas Strip and the Cotai Strip in Macau. It estimates that the first Japanese casino won’t open until 2023.

April 16, 2017 10:11 Happy Easter:

Special Easter dinners are being served in the buffets and restaurants all over town. At Ellis Island, dinner is $9.99 and you get $10 in slot free-play. Boyd casinos are awarding 15X points on penny slots, 11X on other slots, and 6X on video poker. Home Plate bar is running a $20 matchplay all day.

April 15, 2017 16:54 UFC Reis/Johnson:

Demetrious Johnson is a -850 favorite over Wilson Reis in tonight's UFC main event. In the other featured match, Michelle Waterson and Rose Namajunas are pick 'em.

April 15, 2017 15:01 California Sports Book Relocated:

Changes continue to be made at the California. After many years of being located on the second floor, the sports book has been relocated to the main casino floor.

April 15, 2017 10:11 NBA Championship Odds:

With the NBA playoffs starting today, the Golden State Warriors are -235 favorites to win the title. They're followed by the Cleveland Cavaliers at +375, the San Antonio Spurs at +850, and the Boston Celtics at +1750. For a discussion on the bookies' assessment vs. the sports quants, see Frank B's blog post "Should the Cavs be 30-1 to Win the NBA Title" at GamblingWithAnEdge.com.

April 14, 2017 19:04 Baccarat Queen on GWAE:

The latest podcast at GamblingWithAnEdge.com features the one of the most famous gamblers in the world, Cheng Yin Sun (a.k.a. Kelly Sun). Kelly was the partner of Phil Ivey who was able to read the edges of cards, allowing the pair to win millions. However, they are now in legal battles with the casinos. Kelly divulges a lot of detail that hasn't aleady been written. Give this one a listen.

 

 

April 14, 2017 15:28 AC Backs Into USA Today:

Today's USA Today contains an article in the "Life" section titled "Vegas Visits Get Pricier" that provides the results of our show-price survey from the April Las Vegas Advisor. It's a little funky in that it was taken from a column Anthony Curtis wrote for another newspaper and the second part of the article (on paid parking) wasn't written by him, but it carries AC's byline and the information is accurate. We're cool with that.

April 14, 2017 09:55 Bellagio Rooftop Fire:

A section of the roof over the retail section at Bellagio caught fire last night, causing the Strip to be shut down to allow emergency-vehicle access. Though the blaze was significant, an evacuation wasn't necessary and there were no injuries reported. The cause of the fire has not been determined.

April 14, 2017 09:45 I-15 Traffic Snarl:

Traffic is at a standstill on northbound I-15 after a truck overturned around Charleston early this morning. The back-up reportedly extends all the way to Primm. Use alternate routes when possible.

April 13, 2017 16:33 Las Vegas Weekend Highlights:

 

• Downtown it's the monthly First Friday with the theme "Revival" (4/14)

• Bastille is center stage at The Chelsea at the Cosmopolitan (4/14)
• Monte Carlo welcomes Ricky Martin to the Park Theater (4/14-15)
• Steely Dan is in the spotlight at the Venetian (4/14-15) 
• South Point features Stayin' Alive - The World's #1 Tribute To The Bee Gees (4/14-16)
• Funny-man Carlos Mencia will perform at Aliante (4/14-15)
• And Clint Black is center stage at Red Rock Resort (4/15)
April 13, 2017 13:59 Clint Holmes Returning to GN:

According to John Katsilometes of the LV Review-Journal, Clint Holmes is returning to the Golden Nugget, the casino at which he began his Las Vegas career nearly 20 years ago. Holmes will begin a residency on May 9, adding to GN's ever-improving entertainment line-up that already features Frankie Moreno and the "52 Fridays" concert series.

April 13, 2017 08:55 Indian Casinos Surpass Commercial:

For the first time, native American casinos have surpassed commercial casinos in gambling win. In a study of 2015 results, Indian casinos throughout the U.S. won $30.5 billion to $29.8 billion by commercial casinos. Racinos were considered a third category and booked a win of $8.5 billion. The report counted 242 tribes with 494 facilities in 28 states.

April 12, 2017 16:20 New Casino in Kansas:

The $80 million Kansas Crossing Casino has opened in Pittsburgh, Kansas, with 625 slots and 16 table games. The resort features a 123-room hotel and an indoor entertainment complex.

April 12, 2017 16:11 Aria Café No Longer 24/7:

Eater Las Vegas reports that the Aria Café is no longer serving 24 hours. The new hours are 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. Jean Philippe Patisserie is now serving 24/7 as the only all-night option in the huge resort.

April 12, 2017 13:27 DFS Legalized in Arkansas:

Arkansas has passed a law legalizing and regulating daily fantasy sports. It's the 11th state to do so, joining Kansas, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Mississippi, Colorado, Missouri, Virginia, Maryland, Indiana, and New York. Next up may be Texas.

April 12, 2017 11:02 Sales Tax Increases:

Sales tax has been increased from 8.15% to 8.25% in Clark County and from 7.725% to 8.265% in Washoe County. For a $7 drink in Las Vegas, the price when tax isn't built in will rise from $7.57 to $7.58. In Reno it increases from $7.54 to $7.58. It's not a significant effect, but then again it's one more extra charge being tacked on to entertainment costs.

April 11, 2017 14:26 Esports Venue Planned for Luxor:

MGM Resorts International is partnering with Allied Esports and Esports Arena to create the first dedicated esports venue on the Strip. Esports Arena Las Vegas will reside at Luxor in the space that was previously the LAX nightclub and is expected to debut in "early 2018."

April 11, 2017 12:54 New Dancer Blog Posted:

A new blog by Bob Dancer has been posted. This week Bob looks at two incidents that occured during one of his video poker classes at South Point -- one specific to video poker and the other something of a general cautionary tale. Check it out at GamblingWithAnEdge.com.

April 11, 2017 09:42 Ejected United Airlines Passenger a Poker Player:

The customer who was forcefully pulled off an overbooked United Airlines flight is a regular tournament-poker player. According to the WSOP.com website, David Dao has had four cashes in the World Series of Poker and 13 cashes on the WSOP Circuit. He's taken three seconds and a third in Circuit events and he finished 30th in the 8-handed no-limit hold 'em event in 2015. His total prize money is $234,000.

April 10, 2017 18:01 Speakeasy at the Mob Museum:

More information has been released about the expansion of downtown's Mob Museum. Plans call for the addition of a speakeasy and distillery in the basement that will have an educational bent, documenting how the "moonshining" business was run during Prohibition.

April 10, 2017 14:50 Hard Rock Coming to Atlantic City:

It's been officially announced that the former Trump Taj Mahal will become Hard Rock Hotel Atlantic City. Following a $375 million renovation and rebranding, the new resort will open on the Boardwalk in the summer of 2018.

April 10, 2017 12:55 NFL Draft Betting Approved:

For the first time, Nevada sports books will allow betting on the NFL draft after an unidentified book petitioned the Gaming Control Board for permission. The Board approved the request, but only on props such as the number of players drafted from a given conference or the number of quarterbacks drafted in a given round. Bets on the draft position of specfic players are not allowed. 

April 10, 2017 07:53 Pollo Campero Opens:

Among all the regional chain restaurants coming to Las Vegas recently, here's one you might not recognize. Pollo Campero has opened in North Las Vegas. It's a chicken restaurant similar to Chick-fil-A that began in Guatamala and is well-known to the Hispanic community. It's the first of four Pollo Campero locations in Las Vegas scheduled to open over two years.

April 09, 2017 13:30 M Resort Adds Resort Fee:

A reader reports that M Resort, one lf the last hold outs, has added a $19.99 daily resort fee. It includes gym use, which formerly carried a charge, but nothing else that hadn't been previously availble for free.

April 09, 2017 09:52 Sunday Funday 39 Poker Tournament at Noon:

Registration is now open for our Sunday Funday 39 poker tournament. Play begins at noon PST/3 p.m. EST today. Along with $100 for first, prizes include LVA membership with the 2017 Member Rewards Book, copies of our just-released The Frugal Gambler Casino Guide and Blackjack for Blood, and several new prizes. Prizes will again be awarded to the first 14 finishers. See the entire prize pool and register to play at the LVA Casino (once signed in, click on "Poker Tournaments" and register for Tourney ID 12499). This tournament is completely free to play. There will also be other tourneys running all day for gift cards and play chips. Come have some fun! See you at noon.

April 09, 2017 07:21 Masters Line:

Going into today's final round of the Masters golf tournament, with six players within two strokes of one another, Justin Rose is a +280 favorite to win. Jordan Spieth is +350, Sergio Garcia is +430, Ricky Fowler is +450, and Adam Scott and Ryan Moore are both +1360.

April 08, 2017 18:52 UFC Cormier/Johnson:

Anthony Johnson is a -130 favorite over Anthony Johnson in today's UFC main event. In the other featured match, Gegard Mousasi is -120 over Chris Weidman.

April 08, 2017 14:34 Free Online Poker Tournament Tomorrow:

Reserve some time tomorrow to play in our 39th Sunday Funday online poker tournament. First place gets $100, and prizes will be awarded to the top 14 places. Prizes include LVA membership with the Member Rewards Book, copies of our just-released The Frugal Gambler Casino Guide and Blackjack for Blood, and several new prizes. The game kicks off at 3 p.m. EST/noon PST. It's completely free to play, with registration beginning two hours before the tournament at the LVA Casino.

April 08, 2017 11:42 Best Deal for UFC Viewing:

Tonight's UFC card is on Pay-Per-View, so you can't watch it in a sports book, but there are viewing options around town with admission charges in the $10-$50 range. The best deal is at the topless club Deja Vu Showgirls. Entry fee is $10 for locals and $20 for out-of-state (if you drive yourself), but that includes free domestic beers, wine, and well drinks from 6 to 10 p.m., plus there's often free pizza. It's a good atmosphere with the dancers leaving the customers alone to watch till the fights are over. We got this tip from ToplessVegasOnline and you can get additional information there (NOTE: ToplessVegasOnline is fully illustrated throughout and contains adult language and imagery. NSFW!).

April 08, 2017 10:32 Britxit:

According to John Katsilometes' column in today's LV Review-Journal, Britney Spears' last show at Planet Hollywood will be on December 31. Spears' agent has confirmed that the show will close at the conclusion of Britney's current contract, but left the door open for her to sign with another casino and possibly even another in the CET group.

April 07, 2017 16:05 Walters Found Guilty of Stock Fraud:

Famous gambler Billy Walters has been found guilty of insider trading, highlighted by a securities deal that involved professional golfer Phil Mickelson. After coming out on top in previous legal battles with the Feds, Walters now faces several years in prison. He expressed surprise at the outcome, stating, "I just did lose the biggest bet of my life. Frankly, I'm in shock." Walters' attorney promises that the verdict will be appealed.

April 07, 2017 14:15 The Trump Exchange:

You can't make president-related prop bets in Las Vegas, but it's big business at foreign and offshore sports books. So big, in fact, that Irish bookmaker Paddy Power is seeking to fill a position designated as "Head of Trump Betting." Paddy Power released a statement that read in part, "After a disastrous year of political cock-ups -- two words for you: Brexit and Trump -- we are determined not to make the same mistakes again in 2017." Resumes are being accepted now. Read more about the Trump betting market in today's Question of the Day.

April 07, 2017 09:59 First Friday Postponed:

First Friday has been moved to the second Friday. Today's scheduled First Friday celebration has been moved to next week due to weather reports indicating the possibility of another wind storm today. Mark your calendars and head downtown next Friday as if it were today. Got all that?

April 06, 2017 12:42 RIP Don Rickles:

Don Rickles, the legendary comedian who headlined Vegas for decades, died today in Los Angeles of kidney failure at the age of 90. Rickles made his first appearance in Las Vegas in 1959, championed by Frank Sinatra, "my hero and benefactor," as Rickles always referred to him. Mike Weatherford, in this book Cult Vegas, called Rickles "the balding Jewish pitball of a comedian" and "one big prune-faced ball of piss-off." In his early years, he was known as "the Insultin' Sultan," but his famous nickname was "The Mouth that Roared." People lined up for 50 years to take offense at Rickles' brand of humor. He also appeared in countless TV shows, including his own, plus numerous movies, including Toy Story 1, 2, and 3 (as Mr. Potato Head), a cameo as casino boss Billy Sherbert in Casino, and perhaps his best performance, as Staff Sergeant Crapgame in Kelly's Heroes. He and his wife Barbara had just celebrated their 52nd wedding anniversary. 

April 06, 2017 10:33 Las Vegas Weekend Highlights:

From country to comedy to punk rock, there's a little something for everyone this weekend. Here are the highlights:

 

• Downtown celebrates "Revival" as the theme for First Friday (4/7)

 
• Comedy-wise we have Steve Martin & Martin Short at Caesars Palace (4/9); Tim Allen at the Mirage (4/7); and D.L. Hughley is performing at the Orleans (4/7-8)
 
• Green Day is in the spotlight at the MGM Garden Arena (4/7)
 
• T-Mobile Arena welcomes country music legend George Straight (4/7-8)
 
• You can catch Ricky Martin at The Park at Monte Carlo (4/7-8)
 
• Hard Rock features Bring Me The Horizon at The Joint (4/8)
 
• The LINQ brings you Phil Vassar (4/8)
 
• 38 Special is center stage at the Orleans (4/8)
 
• And The Great Vegas Festival of Beer returns to Las Vegas (4/7-8) featuring over 100 breweries, cideries, and meaderies, as well as over 500 craft and specialty brews.
April 06, 2017 08:16 New Poll Up -- Blackjack Skills:

How advanced are your blackjack skills? Are you a seat-of-the-pants player? Do you know basic strategy? Count cards? Do you use advanced advantage-play techniques? Let us know where you fit in by participating in our new Reader Poll that's up now. 

 

April 05, 2017 20:00 Masters Line:

After a last-minute injury report concerning former favorite Dustin Johnson, there's been a shake-up in the odds for golf's Masters, which begins tomorrow morning. The favorite is Rory McIlroy at +625, followed by Johnson at +645 and Jordan Spieth at +765.

April 05, 2017 16:51 Yusho Closing:

The next restaurant to close at Monte Carlo as part of its transformation to Park MGM will be Yusho. Considered one of the best Asian restaurants in town and a former "Essential 50" choice in Eating Las Vegas, it will close, apparently for good, on June 5.

April 05, 2017 13:44 Dancer Discusses Partnerships:

In this week's blog post, Bob Dancer uses an example from his personal life to explain what it takes for a gambling partnership to work. Check it out at GamblingWithAnEdge.com.

April 05, 2017 11:45 Bike Raided:

The Bicycle Hotel and Casino in Bell Gardens California was shut down in a government raid yesterday. The reason for the raid hasn't been specified, but participants included the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the IRS, which suggests it was money-laundering connected. The casino was reopened as of early this morning.

April 04, 2017 18:38 Jean Scott Posts April Promos:

Jean Scott provides information on April casino promotions on her Frugal Vegas blog. Also check out a more recent post that provides information about a new promotion called "Moonlight Multipliers" at the Palms.

 

 

April 04, 2017 16:30 MGM Fiddles With Parking Fees:

MGM Resorts International has amended its parking-fee structure. The key changes are a lesser $5-$7 fee (depending on location) for 1-2 hour self-parking and a $2 increase in overnight fees for both valet and self. The changes will go into effect on April 12. For full details, visit our parking-fee page.

April 04, 2017 12:45 Fooled by Gold Coast:

We flubbed one in the current Las Vegas Advisor. We reported that three new machines in the sports book bar at the Gold Coast are dealing 9/6 Jacks or Better for quarters. That's correct, but we didn't notice that the royal flush pays 2500 coins instead of the standard 4000 coins, which drops the return from 99.54% to 98.88%. Sorry for that miss, but it's also a good reminder that you have to check all of the payout numbers on a video poker schedule, especially when you think you see something good.

April 03, 2017 19:32 NCAA Basketball Tournament Championship Line:

North Carolina is a -1 favorite over Gonzaga in the NCAA Basketball Championship game. The total is 155.5.

April 03, 2017 18:22 Gordie Brown Coming Back to the Strip:

After a decade of headlining downtown, impressionist Gordie Brown is returning to the Strip. Gordie Brown Live opens May 9 at Planet Hollywood, the site of his last Strip gig before leaving for a residency at the Golden Nugget, with tickets starting at $59.95 base.

April 03, 2017 08:51 South Point Comp:

Mondays through Thursdays in April, earn 300 same-day points ($300 coin-in) at South Point and get a comped lunch buffet. Earn 600 points and get dinner.

April 02, 2017 23:32 Britney and JLo Rule the Planet:

Prompting comparisons with Celine Dion, Britney Spears has become a box office powerhouse at Planet Hollywood. Her shows in the Axis Theater have earned more than $100 million through ticket sales of more than 700,000. No slouch herself, Jennifer Lopez earned $36 million from sales of 170,000 tickets in 2016 alone.

April 02, 2017 13:16 Australia Imposes Betting Bans:

Moving in the opposite direction of current worldwide trends, Australia has passed laws prohibiting previously allowed online poker and in-game sports betting. The sports-betting restrictions were prompted by concerns over increased incidences of match fixing.

April 02, 2017 11:12 NCAA Final Opening Line:

North Carolina opened as a -2 favorite over Gonzaga for Monday's final of the NCAA basketball tournament and the line has dropped to -1.5. The total opened at 152.5 and moved up to its current 154.5

April 01, 2017 19:25 Final Four North Carolina/Oregon:

Final Four North Carolina/Oregon
North Carolina is a -4.5 favorite over Oregon in today's second Final Four game of the NCAA Basketball Tournament. The total is 153.

April 01, 2017 18:05 Final Four Gonzaga/South Carolina:

 

Gonzaga is a -7 favorite over South Carolina in today's first Final Four game of the NCAA Basketball Tournament. The total is 138.

 

 

April 01, 2017 14:04 Minus5 No. 3:

A third Minus5 Ice Experience will open this summer in the Grand Canal Shops at the Venetian. Guests are outfitted with parkas and gloves before entering the 23-degree environment, which is -5 degrees celsius.

April 01, 2017 10:34 New Vegas Flick:

The upcoming movie Blade Runner 2049 will have a scene set in Las Vegas, but it wasn't shot here. The future Caesars Palace depicted was filmed in Hungary. The movie starring Ryan Gosling is set for release in October.