By Jo Ann Munz
Las Vegas is ripe with history, so if you want to make it in the books you need to do something pretty spectacular. Standing tall, proud and glorious over all the other casinos on Fremont Street, Derek Stevens’ Circa does exactly that. Being the first new construction downtown in decades it seamlessly fuses old Vegas with a modern flair. Boasting 1 of the most impressive sports books that feels more like you’re in a grand amphitheater, it literally brings sports larger than life to you complete with comfortable chairs that recline. The Mega Bar is 165 feet of gaming delight, paired with a wall of continuous big screens ensuring not a minute of any event is missed. As you travel up the second largest escalator in Nevada, nothing can prepare you for the Stadium Swim sitting on the rooftop transporting you into another dimension, you almost forget all the action sitting right below you! Regally sitting like crown are 2 levels of countless pools that can be heated for year-round use, jacuzzis, cabanas equipped with A/C and heat, swim up bars with gaming and a view that will take your breath away! With 5 amazing dining selections, you don’t even notice there isn’t a buffet, a Vegas staple of the past. Whatever your tastebuds desire: EAST 8, Saginaw’s, Barry’s Prime, Victory Burgers & Wings Co. or Project BBQ will certainly satisfy. In an effort to up the service game, food and drink orders from a few of the restaurants can be ordered via QR scans and delivered directly to you in the sports book and pool areas. USB ports are conveniently placed throughout the casino to ensure you’re always in charge and onsight VSiN studios live streams daily, so you don’t miss a minute of the action! Probably the biggest homage to the past belongs to the queen of the house, Vegas Vicki, who was restored to her original neon glory and given a permanent home to invite everyone to kick up their heels with her once again! When you add up all the nuances of the Circa experience their “Make History, Leave a Legacy” epitaph on the wall is precisely what they delivered!
A few fun facts about the history of the land Circa is currently built on: Circa sits off of Fremont & 1st Street today and is the most grandiose casino to happen in Downtown Las Vegas in over 50 years. The location originally started as a castle looking building in 1905. Las Vegas was a brand-new town that had no track record of survival and thriving back 115 years ago. W.R. Thomas built the original building at that location. For 50+ years it was a pharmacy and then in the late 1940’s it became a landmark with a large neon rooftop sign that pointed in the direction of the Pioneer Club that was across the street. Casinos were starting to being built all around the surrounding area and in 1955 the building was demolished and replaced with an all-new casino that was named and re-named for the next few decades. It was called Silver Palace, Carousel, Gambler’s Hall of Fame, Sundance West, Sassy Sally’s and then eventually Mermaids Casino. Mermaids closed on June 27, 2016. When the Silver Palace casino opened in the summer of 1956, it was the first two-level club in Las Vegas, and the escalator that connected the casino with the lower-level restaurant, was the first in Southern Nevada.