Vegas News March 22, 2020 –
Vegas Shut Down
This will be a bit of a different Vegas News since there isn’t much happening in Las Vegas right now. COVID-19 is spreading across the country and just about everything fun in Las Vegas (and the world) is shut down. The week didn’t start off so stark.
Last week Las Vegas casinos and businesses inside of the properties started closing to help slow the spread of coronavirus. However, there wasn’t a full shut down of all the casinos in town.
Social Distance Blackjack
I decided to check out Red Rock Casino Resort & Spa on Monday. I thought the scene would be strange and was curious to see what it was actually like. The walkthrough was brief as I didn’t want to get infected or infect anyone else.
This turned out to be Red Rock Casinos next to last day open. There weren’t many people inside the casino. In my few minutes walking through the casino I saw about seven people playing table games, six people in the sportsbook, and another handful playing slot machines.
The tables were set up for social distancing. As you can see above there were only three seats at the blackjack tables. Only one table had more than one person. I took the picture below from Lucky Bar since the pit boss was nearby and I didn’t want to disrupt things.
I made my way past the table games to the sportsbook. Since there are no professional sports, they only had horse racing on the screen. There were five guys watching the races. I saw one person place a bet. There was another guy on the sports side that looked like he was napping. I did get close enough to see what was really going on.
On my way out I passed the poker room which had its lights on but nobody playing. My trip through Red Rock lasted about 3 minutes. I really just wanted to see what it was like. It was as sad as I expected. I walked past a few people cleaning the machines and doors. On my way out the person cleaning the doors was kind enough to hit the handicap door button so I didn’t have to touch anything. I thought that was kind.
As you probably know all casinos in Las Vegas have shut down. After suggesting that non-essential businesses close, the Governor has now ordered all non-essential businesses to close (more on this shortly).
Restaurants Essential – Take Away
Restaurants are considered essential and can sell food to go. I stopped by one of my favorite coffee shops in Las Vegas yesterday. It was strange to see Sambalatte empty. It’s normally packed no matter what time I visit. I think all the people in the plaza were at Target instead. I went back today and the booze store seemed to have a steady flow of customers.
I’m grateful that Sambalatte and other local businesses are open. Sambalatte is special to me since it’s one of the first local businesses I frequented when I moved to Las Vegas. Not every bar or restaurant has stayed open. Here’s a list of local restaurants that are still open. It’s being updated regularly. I’m trying to visit at least one local business a day to show a little support.
A few non-locals on twitter have told me that they plan on visiting some of these restaurants when they’re able to visit Las Vegas again. Every month I try to share something at TravelZork from the point of view from a local to help people who may be curious about leaving the Vegas Strip.
While I’m not native to Las Vegas, I’ve been living here for almost 10 years. In my mind, I’m still a tourist that happens to live 20 minutes away from my favorite vacation destination.
Hopefully, this pandemic is over soon and we can get back to fun Vegas experiences.
An Informative Overview With Lots of Photos
Saying Goodbye To The Hard Rock Hotel Las Vegas
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Non-Essential Business Shut Down
The spread of coronavirus is exhausting. There’s so much happening everywhere all day that it can be overwhelming. That said, I’m going to share a little more about the non-essential business shut down in Las Vegas for anyone that’s not paying close attention. The Nevada Independent is a great resource for serious news like coronavirus. This article on the shutdown sums up the shutdown.
Non-essential businesses have been ordered to shut down for 30 days. Unless something changes it will be at least a month until casinos re-open. Nevada Independent has a full list highlights but I’ll share some highlights of what’s still open.
Restaurants may remain open but only for orders to go or delivery. Some bars with kitchens are still open but only serve food. Cannabis stores may be open to at least deliver the good stuff. Grocery stores, pharmacies, convenience and liquor stores are also open. Sure the CVS on the Vegas Strip is an eyesore but it’s a place that appears to have plenty of supplies, unlike some other retail outlets around Las Vegas.
There should be some casino-related news the next time we meet. Until then be safe.