Mohegan Gaming takes Las Vegas Strip’s tribal gaming Virginity

Nevada gambling regulators have enshrined Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment’s status as the first tribal casino operator on the fabled Las Vegas Strip.

On Thursday, the Nevada Gaming Commission (NGC) unanimously approved MGE’s application for a license to operate gaming at the Virgin Hotels Las Vegas property. The NGC ruling follows a similarly unanimous approval by the Nevada Gaming Control Board two weeks ago.

MGE chair James Gessner – one of 15 MGE figures who received personal licensing approval on Thursday – expressed pride at becoming the Strip’s first tribal operator, noting that the company had blazed a similar trail in Atlantic City years ago through a deal with Resorts Casino Hotel.

The Mohegan Sun Casino at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas is slated to open January 15, 2021, assuming everyone in the state isn’t dead from COVID-19 by then. MGE currently operates in Connecticut, Louisiana, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Washington state, as well as two casinos on the Canadian side of Niagara Falls, and is planning mega-projects in Greece and South Korea.


In another Vegas casino first, Caesars Entertainment announced Thursday that The Cromwell boutique hotel & casino will reopen on October 29 as the Strip’s first ‘adults only’ venue. Children will be welcome at the property’s GIADA restaurant but The Cromwell’s hotel and gaming floor will be strictly 21-and-over.

The Cromwell’s new kid-antagonistic policy follows a similar announcement by the new Circa Casino Resort, which opens next Wednesday (28) in downtown Las Vegas. The Cromwell’s reopening leaves the Rio casino as the only Caesars property in Vegas that has yet to resume operations following this spring’s pandemic shutdown.


Speaking of shut down, Caesars’ Paris Hotel & Casino Las Vegas venue went dark around 7pm Thursday following a power outage that left guests throughout the property playing blind man’s bluff. The power came back around 10pm but not before staff and first responders conducted an evacuation of the gaming floor. Hotel guests were instructed to shelter in place while the handful of guests stuck in elevators when the power failed were left to sweat it out until help arrived.

The cause of the outage remains a mystery but officials said there’d been no fire and no one was seriously hurt. A similar outage in 2016 left the property in the dark for around 20 hours, and this week’s outage, while mercifully shorter, will likely prompt renewed questions about the state of the Paris electrical system.

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