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Las Vegas Advisor | Travel

Las Vegas Advisor: Timetables for casino openings shift

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                                A woman plays an electronic slot machine during the reopening of the Mirage hotel and casino on Thursday.


    A woman plays an electronic slot machine during the reopening of the Mirage hotel and casino on Thursday.

It’s getting tough to keep a schedule in Las Vegas. Last week it was announced that the MSG Sphere is delaying its debut until 2023. The opening date of the state-of-the-art events venue that’s being built just east of the Strip was originally planned for this year, then was rescheduled for 2021. However, an interruption in construction during the pandemic shutdown has pushed the projected date back again.

Though it’s not official, there’s talk that Virgin Las Vegas, formerly the Hard Rock, might push its expected December opening back to sometime in 2021. Near term, the reopening of the Tropicana on the Strip has been reset to Sept. 17 (it had been scheduled for Sept. 1), and that date isn’t firm.

Coin crisis: Despite the fact that most of Las Vegas’ slot and video poker machines use coinless technology, a nationwide coin shortage is causing problems for casinos that still have old-style machines that are referred to as “coin-droppers.” One example is the El Cortez, where a fee for changing coins at the cage has been removed in an attempt to bolster reserves. And they’ve gone a step further at the D, where coins are needed to operate the Sigma Derby horse-­racing machine. Customers who bring in a pound of quarters get a limited-­edition Sigma Derby hat.

Big win at Bellagio: Last week a player hit for a jackpot of $3,934,609 at the Bellagio. The big win came on a Dancing Drums Explosion video slot machine, which required the player to pick the exact three gold coins necessary for the win from a choice of 12 in a bonus round.

Question: Are there odds out on the presidential race?

Answer: The Las Vegas sports books are not allowed to take bets on the election, but that doesn’t stop them from posting odds for fun. At the South Point, veteran Vegas bookmaker Jimmy Vaccaro makes Joe Biden a -130 favorite to win, with President Donald Trump a +120 underdog. These odds are in line with offshore sports books, where real bets are taken.

For more information about current Las Vegas shows, buffets, coupons, and good deals, go to

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