El Cortez


Address 600 East Fremont Street, Las Vegas, Nevada 89101
Opening date 1941
Theme Ranch
No. of rooms 364
Casino type Land-Based
Owner Jackie Gaughan
Years renovated 1963, 1980, 2006

The El Cortez, a hotel and casino can be a relatively tiny downtown Las Vegas gaming venue a block from the Fremont Street Expertise and Las Vegas Boulevard. The official marketing and advertising slogan has been “Where locals come to play” because the El Cortez has traditionally attracted Las Vegas residents weary of massive casinos geared towards vacationers. Slots, table games along with a race and sports book occupy one floor with the principal pavilion. It is 1 on the oldest casino-hotel properties in Las Vegas possessing constantly operated at the same Fremont Street location because 1941. Mainly Spanish Colonial Revival in style, it reflects a 1952 remodel when the facade was modernized. On February 22, 2013, the structure was placed around the National Register of Historic Places.


Marion Hicks and J.C. Grayson built the El Cortez, downtown Las Vegas” initial key resort, in 1941 for $245,000. The location at 6th Street and Fremont was originally viewed as as well far from downtown, nevertheless it immediately became so lucrative, Bugsy Siegel, Meyer Lansky, Gus Greenbaum and Moe Sedway bought the home in 1945 from J. Kel Houssels for $600,000. John Kell (J. Kell) Houssels, Sr. (1895-1979) had originally opened the 59-room hotel and casino before the sale for the major organized crime figures. Houssels purchased the hotel back from Siegel”s group in 1946 for $766,000. In 1963, the Pavilion Rooms were added following the hotel was purchased by Jackie Gaughan. An additional 15-story tower addition was completed in 1980. The 64-room Cabana Suites had been completed within the former Ogden Home in 2009 bringing the total area count to its current 364. Gaughan, a casino owner and operator due to the fact the early 1950s, lives inside the El Cortez tower penthouse and is known to be on the casino floor just about day-to-day. The home is among the few casinos to possess in no way changed its exterior facade in Las Vegas, retaining precisely the same signage and ranch themed architecture for more than seventy years.

Present operation

Jackie Gaughan”s son Michael Gaughan owns the sports and race book inside the present casino under the name South Point Race and Sports Book, which is run in other downtown casinos as well. Like most Las Vegas casinos, the El Cortez has undergone a number of renovations with all the most recent major remodeling completed in 2006. New carpet, marble flooring, gaming machines, refurbished guest rooms and an upgraded kitchen for the restaurant have been added. Even though only a block away from the Fremont Street Encounter, the hotel is a part of the newly designed Fremont East section of downtown. It has also made a primary entrance off Las Vegas Boulevard (5th Street) by opening a block long pedestrian walkway in the boulevard for the hotel”s principal entrance on 6th Street. The El Cortez can also be well-known inside the casino market because the most prominent “break-in house” for new table game dealers to have practical experience just before moving onto bigger properties. In 2008 longtime owner Jackie Gaughan sold the hotel just ahead of his 88th birthday. The buyers include things like his son, his nephew, and his small business partner of lots of decades. Jackie will continue to live in the casino and greet buyers and play poker. Not too long ago the coffee shop has been extensively renovated and renamed Cafe Cortez. The fine-dining restaurant has been renamed The Flame. The separate hotel in the back, the 100-room Ogden Home, has been absolutely renovated into the 64 suite Cabana Suites.

In 2009 Jackie Gaughan sold the El Cortez and its properties to Kenny Epstein. Jackie nevertheless lives within the hotel and happily plays poker downstairs within the poker space.

Licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses materials from the Wikipedia.

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