Sunday, June 16 2024

Las Vegas was born today!

las vegas day
Las Vegas, the U.S. city  in the State of Nevada, was born today, May 15, 1905!

Eva Metis Koutoumanou

Las Vegas has approximately 600,000 permanent residents and deservedly holds the title of the gambling capital of the world, since there are 1,701 casinos on its territory!

las vegas

"Las Vegas" in Spanish means "The Grasslands" as the area is an oasis in the heart of the Mojave desert that until 1848 belonged to Mexico.

The first residents settled in Las Vegas on May 15, 1905 and were employees of railroad companies that refueled trains passing through the area, and on March 16, 1911, it officially became a city with 800 inhabitants.

The city vegetated until 1930, when the U.S. government approved the construction of the giant Boulder Dam (now Hoover) on the Colorado River. Thousands of Americans flocked to Las Vegas to claim the dam's 5,000 construction jobs.

The city changed face from one day to the next. Illegal gambling was beginning to flourish and prohibition was effectively abolished.

So, the authorities decided to take advantage of the situation and legalize gambling in order to flow hot money into the public coffers in the era of the Great Depression. Everything was done methodically and organized, and the first license was given in 1931 to the Northern Club. The lifting of Prohibition in 1933 and the legalization of prostitution were two other measures that completed the scene and earned Las Vegas the nickname "Sin City."

Las Vegas past

In the 40s, the first large hotel complexes with casinos began to be built on the famous Las Vegas Strip, with the decisive contribution of all branches of the American mafia (Irish, Italian and Jewish). Famous was the Casino "Flamingo", owned by gangsters Bugsy Singer and Meyer Lansky.

Las Vegas began to flourish as it combined vacationing in an exotic setting with the opportunity to gamble.

People suspected that organized crime controlled gambling, flocked to the "city that never sleeps" in their millions. The gambling city was also brightened by showbiz's biggest names, such as Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Abbott and Costello, Dean Martin and many others who gave concerts and performances in the spacious casino halls.

las vegas hotel

Nowadays, Las Vegas is trying to wean itself off gambling and redefine itself as a purely travel destination, as its casino revenue today represents only 20% of the city's total revenue.

Conference tourism is a new source of gold, having surpassed casinos in turnover, while with generous financial incentives that go as far as full tax exemption, the establishment of new technology businesses and banks is favored.

A constant value for Las Vegas remains the "industry" of weddings, with over 300 per day! Weddings in Las Vegas are almost automatic and the cost is extremely low as a simple wedding costs only 35 euros and does not require many formalities.