For the first installment of these series we will take you on a trip around the world, but our first destination will take us directly to North America where we will be visiting one of the most famous cities in the world Las Vegas, Nevada, also known as “Sin City” or The Entertainment Capital of the World.
It is very unlikely that someone hasn´t at least heard about this incredible place, but just in case let´s just start from scratch.
The first thing that needs to be said about the city of Las Vegas is that what is commonly known as Las Vegas Strip, the famous boulevard where most of the famous hotels and casinos are located, is not actually within the city limits.
“The strip” as it is usually referred as, is in Clark County just on the limits of the actual city and it has been designated as an All-American Road, which is a recognition given by the United States Department of Transportation for its historic, archeological, cultural, natural, recreational and scenic value. I think we can all agree that the Las Vegas Strip pretty much covers all of the above.
Also talking about “the strip”, a remarkable thing to say about this boulevard is that, if we count the number of rooms, out of the twenty five largest hotels in the world, 19 are located in this place, giving you a number of nearly seventy thousand (yes 70.000!) rooms in one road. Now that´s impressive.
The city of Las Vegas also calls itself The Entertainment Capital of the World, because the whole town pretty much lives off of tourism, gaming and conventions, and at the same time these activities feed the hotel and restaurant businesses, so it’s kind of a full circle. The city is also famous for hosting some of the greatest performers and shows, such as Cirque du Soleil, Celine Dion, and many more. Most importantly, big celebrities have tied the knot in Vegas as well as the common couple that decided to elope and have a crazy Elvis wedding for fun memories.
In terms of the casinos, the whole thing started in Sin City in 1931 with the opening of the Northern Club, which is now known as La Bayou. Since then there has been a lot of growth for the gaming industry, but also a lot of changes from the early days.
Today, “the strip” is one of the places with more casinos together in the same area and you can basically walk the whole boulevard and during your tour you’ll get a feeling similar to that of a state fair with all the lights from the buildings, music constantly playing and all kinds of people parading around. As of the 2010 census, the city had something close to 600.000 people living in it, and more than half live off of one or more of the activities we just mentioned.
For a long time the whole industry had ties with the mafia and was constantly under investigation by the government. In the last 20 years, only three casinos haven´t changed owners: The Golden Gate, the California and the Freemont.
Have you been to Las Vegas? What was your experience like?