Las vegas park

Park MGM in Las Vegas will have a smoke-free casino when it reopens


(CNN) – Butts stop there.

MGM Resorts announced Monday that when Park MGM and NoMad Las Vegas reopen at the end of the month, the hotels will include the first completely smoke-free and vaping-free – including its casino – on the Las Vegas Strip. (NoMad is a boutique hotel located on the upper floors of the resort building.)

The resort, which has a total of 2,993 rooms and numerous restaurants, including Sin City’s only Eataly, is slated to reopen on September 30. It has been closed since March, when it was closed due to concerns over the coronavirus pandemic. This will be the last of MGM’s properties to return.

Locals have whispered for months that Park MGM will become the Strip’s first completely smoke-free casino – a move that fits the resort’s brand of embracing nature.

Welcome to Park MGM – no smoking, please.

MGM Resorts International

Earlier this summer, when MGM Resorts and other casino companies decided to reopen some resorts, rumors surfaced that ownership between New York-New York and downtown would likely ban smoking.

On Monday morning, the resort’s website was updated with a new homepage that reads: “Let’s Clear the Air: Park MGM is smoke-free.”

End of an era

Local historians say the move is a big deal.

Since the early days of Las Vegas, casinos have been synonymous with smoking, especially on the gambling hall.

Elsewhere in the city, especially before the pandemic, visitors could find ashtrays at every gaming table and waiters decked out in fancy outfits parading the casino floors selling cigarettes and cigars.

David G. Schwartz, who has written 11 books on Vegas, said Park MGM’s decision was a sign of the times.

“While there have been many casinos outside of Las Vegas that have gone smoke-free, this is the first time that a Las Vegas resort of this size has gone smoke-free,” said Schwartz, who is also assistant vice-president of faculty affairs at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. “It shows how the casino game industry’s stance on smoking is evolving.”

Howard Stutz, a longtime gaming industry reporter, agreed.

Stutz said that while casino companies have tried smoke-free gambling on the Las Vegas Strip, they have only experienced it on a smaller scale.

Specifically, he noted, several properties have small no-smoking areas without gambling. One property, the former Silver City Casino, tried to go completely non-smoking in 1991, but that effort failed after a few minutes. dark months.

Just in case people haven't already gotten the message.

Just in case people haven’t already gotten the message.

MGM Resorts International

“For Park MGM and NoMad, the timing now due to Covid-19 health and safety guidelines seems correct,” Stutz wrote in an email. “So many other gambling markets, especially Maryland, are smoke-free.”

Stutz, who is also the editor of the gaming industry trade publication CDC Gaming Reports, predicted that there would likely be some setback from smokers and smokers’ rights groups, but said said he expects this decision to stand.

A big bet?

MGM Resorts’ decision may even prompt other casino companies to follow a similar strategy. While no other casino company has made a commitment to make resorts permanently smoke-free at this time, many resorts have temporarily banned smoking as the industry continues to fight to limit the spread of Covid-19 .

2020 has certainly been a difficult year for Las Vegas.

The tourism industry has closed almost completely, with all casinos closed in April and May due to the pandemic.

According to statistics from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, visitor traffic in June 2020 was 70% lower than it was in June 2019, despite the gradual reopening of several gaming properties earlier this month.

The numbers have grown slowly since then; last weekend was one of the busiest since february.

Bill Hornbuckle, CEO and President of MGM Resorts, said he remains optimistic that the launch of the Strip’s first completely smoke-free casino complex is a significant step on the road to recovery.

“The past six months have presented extraordinary challenges,” Hornbuckle said in a statement. “There is a lot of work to be done as we stay focused on the health and safety of our employees and guests, but this is an important time for us.”


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