Home » News » New Casino & Resort Proposal On The Table In Las Vegas
New Casino & Resort Proposal On The Table In Las Vegas
Updated April 24, 2023
A city like Las Vegas is in a constant state of change — new visitors, massive renovation projects, and yes, brand-new projects entirely. This next story fits into the latter. It’s the latest casino-and-resort hybrid being proposed in Vegas. In this article, we’ll cover all the must-know details.
What Project Is Being Proposed?
The project is being dubbed “Harlem Nights” — named after a 1989 flick starring Eddie Murphy and Richard Pryor. The proposal is for a 60-story mixed-use casino resort and residential complex. The developer is Shlomo Meiri, who is based in Beverly Hills, California.
More nitty-gritty details about the plan: it would feature a 900-seat theater, 764 hotel rooms, 458 residential units, a rooftop bar, retail, and a restaurant. No mention of a sportsbook for sports betting, so this likely won’t be the place to get Vegas betting odds at. Anyway, the total projected cost is projected around a whopping $700 million. The construction would take an estimated six years to complete.
The resort would not be in the Las Vegas Strip. Heck, it won’t be in Fremont, either. Instead, Harlem Nights would be a fixture on Las Vegas’ Historic Westside. More specifically, it would encompass a two-acre plot that Meiri owns at 600 West Jackson Avenue at the intersection of F Street. This area has a special significance, which we’ll explain below.
What Makes This Proposal Special?
Harlem Nights resort might be named after a movie, but its name also hints at what makes this casino proposal extra special. You see, the land that Meiri owns and would use for this project was formerly the Town Tavern. For those unaware, that was THE go-to nightclub for African American culture before the desegregation of the Las Vegas Strip in 1960.
Town Tavern was frequented by many top entertainers in that era. Usual guests included Cab Calloway, Chubby Checker, Nat King Cole, Sammy Davis Jr., and Sonny Liston. It was a jazz club, so some of these names would drop in for sets. The entire Westside was a popular hub for blacks — which went as far as to call a portion of it the “Black Strip” — but Town Tavern was a cornerstone of it.
Over the years, especially as blacks assimilated more with whites, the Town Tavern lost its luster. It went through a series of different owners before the building was deemed unsafe and boarded up by the city in 2010.
Harlem Nights is being promoted as an “homage” to that time period when the Westside was rich in black culture. Diversity is obviously a huge talking point across the country right now, which helps this proposal. Still, there are plenty of challenges to getting this approved, as we’ll cover below.
What Could Prevent This Project From Being Built?
We’ve repeatedly said the word “proposal” in this article — and we mean it. There are significant obstacles in the way before the Harlem Nights project is cleared. Any one of these issues could stop the project from breaking ground.
For one, projects on this same plot of land have been rejected before. The previous owner was Steve Hayashi, who planned to create a casino resort featuring a 400-room hotel and 2,000-seat theater. Ultimately, the board did not believe Hayashi could raise the $2 billion to fund the project, so it was killed off — even after Hayashi forked over $400,000 in remodeling the old building.
That was then, but this is now. Based on the current proposal, the city staff has hesitations about the plan. According to documents filed with the planning commission, the proposed height of the tower, 60 stories, would require an increase of 53 stories. That’s the maximum height allowed in this area due to its vicinity near the city’s airport.
There are more concerns, as well. Exemptions would need to be made for the area’s parking regulations and a public alleyway vacation. City staff recommended denying all of ‘em, sans the alleyway one. Officials went on to say the resort would be “out of character with the surrounding area.” According to them, the Westside could benefit more from environmental upgrades and social services — not another casino.
Vote Will Decide Harlem Nights Fate
The Las Vegas Planning Commission will vote on whether to approve or disprove the Harlem Nights proposal. Originally, the vote was scheduled to take place on Tuesday, April 11 but it was delayed.
The delay was at the request of the developer. Do you know what that means? It was delayed to “buy time” and help convince voters. The new vote is now planned to take place on June 13.
Of course, the project consultant, Lisa Mayo-DeRiso, immediately went into PR mode after the delay. According to her, “It’s not uncommon for a project like this to take extra time,” and that “We just want to have the best package possible.”
To find out whether Harlem Nights passes the vote or not, be sure to check back here in mid-June. We’ll have up-to-date news on the latest happenings involving the ambitious project.
Eric has had a deep love for sports since the age of 10. This love has driven him to choose a career in sports journalism, where he covered different sporting events, from high school games to professional leagues, over the course of several years. Today, Eric channels his sports passion into betting and when not sharing his betting expertise here, you can find him at a sportsbook.