Is The Flamingo Hotel Still Open – The Flamingo held its grand opening for three nights in December 1946 and, contrary to popular belief, huge crowds appeared for three nights.
. This refers to the general view of the opening of the Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas on December 26, 1946. In the film picture of the event, there are almost no guests and a violent storm breaks out, knocking out the power of the casino. . Warren Beatty, who plays Siegel, announces that the Flamingo will close the next day. Although certainly popular;
Is The Flamingo Hotel Still Open
This is not the only source that depicts the opening of the Phoenix as a disaster. We see the failure in the 1974 HBO film
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A very different matter. For the first time in March there were no heavy thunderstorms. There was rain in Southern California and six inches of snow in Charleston, but the McCarran Valley Weather Bureau reported thunderstorms and only 0.12 inches of rain in Las Vegas. Of course, the weather on the West Coast canceled my flight, which prevented Hollywood celebrities from attending the first night’s activities, but it didn’t really matter because the third night was full of celebrities. Although some of the big promising names like William Holden, Lucille Ball and Ava Gardner did not appear, the evening of December 28 was still full of famous Hollywood figures. George Raft, Vivian Blaine, George Sanders, Lon McAllister and Sonny Tufts, not only for the flamingo attendees, but for the radio broadcast from Las Vegas station KENO.
Benjamin “Bugs” Siegel and Virginia Hill presided over three grand opening ceremonies, greeting celebrities and lining up guests to enter the casino. Seal image courtesy UCLA Special Collections; Hill image courtesy of Alam
Second, for a special three-night grand opening – two dedicated to residents and a third focused on celebrities – the Flamingo was packed. On opening night, traffic was jammed at the door to the parking lot, and, as travel writer Roland Hill said, with the doors open “it was like an old-time run in the open West.” Louis Wiener Jr., Siegel’s lawyer, recalled, “You can’t into a shoe They were all there. Wally Williams wrote in his article about the opening
“It seems that the lords must go, that the walls may be taken care of by the people.” Columnist Walter Winchell reported that the Flamingo had twenty thousand people in its first three nights.
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Third, rather than the frustrated and worried Ben Siegel as Warren Beatty, Bugs was actually a friend, greeting guests in a black tuxedo with pink carnations. He attended his mistress Virginia Hill each of the first three nights, wearing a different hair color each night – platinum blonde, black and then natural red. The stage show featured popular comedian Jimmy Durant, the Xavier Cugat Orchestra, singer Rose Maria and dancer Tommy Wonder. Rosa Maria remembers that at the end of the show “everyone was standing and screaming”. It was a “sad night”. Texas gambler Benny Binion, who recently arrived in Las Vegas, remembered opening night as “the greatest fun I’ve ever seen.”
The open celebration took place in an event that no one in Las Vegas had ever seen. Marketers and visitors later described the Flamingo as “orme”, “rich” and “elegant”. Thelma Koblentz remembers “knee-length rugs and more elegant drapes and serving a beautiful dinner.” And then there were flowers, eyes, in crowns, hooves and baskets. After inspecting the scene, Jimmy Durant walked up to Sigel and exclaimed, “Benny, this place looks like a graveyard with gambling tables and slot machines.” One reviewer who attended wrote of the large bar, which was “full of mirrors, green leather walls, black ceilings and tomato red furniture”. Access to the casino also impressed visitors. second
Visitors walking from the car saw “a forest full of evergreens”, palm trees and “semitropical shrubs”. Besides the great floods in the sky, they saw the bushes lit up in blue and red.
Game reviewers wrote glowing reviews of the three opening nights. Jimmy Star called Flamingo a “magnificent spa”, a grown-up “fairyland”, with buildings and landscaping that were “luxurious, luxurious and fantastic”. Starr concluded that Phoenix is ”the most fantastic casino game”. . . Allyn Mosby agreed, writing that it was the “minimum Taj Majal” that was “the cleanest salon.” Bob Thomas described the casino as looking “like the institution that M-G-M wanted to build but for budget reasons.”
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For all the hyperbole surrounding the opening, Siegel faces serious financial challenges. It still has enough money to cover construction costs, which have risen from the original budget of $1.2 million to $5 million, a figure that will remain in the hotel rooms in February. The FBI memo indicated that Flamingo’s “patronage” was “large but not useful.” At the door, onlookers claimed to have been cheated out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. As Wiener recalled, “there was so much money that you wouldn’t believe.”
But Flamingo Casino was not the big winner. Viner claimed, “If they were lucky, they would have won the price of the hotel in the first days they opened.” Opening the flamingos in front of the hotel was ready for damage was part of the property. Instead of continuing to play cards, many winners went to El Rancho Vegas and the Last Frontier Hotel. The losses continued the following month. For example, one columnist told Dorothy Kilgallen that well-known gambler Nicholas “Nick the Greek” Dandolos won nearly half a million in four nights in the second week of January. Being cheated by the runners on the boards made things worse.
Because of the novelty of the Flamingo, fewer local patrons flocked to the new Casino. For example, Rose Mary recalled that it was not uncommon for Jimmy Durant to be in front of fewer than 2 dozen people after big opening nights. When new acts Lena Horne opened, the crowds returned, but then faded away again. Siegel’s paychecks and more of his dwindling bankroll poured into the property, but the losses continued and led to dire reports. The informant told the FBI agent that Siegel told him that Joe Adonis, an old friend of Frank Costello and Meyer Lansky, “had the power to kill him” because of the loss of the money he had invested. In the wake of all of this disruption, Siegel announced that the shops, restaurants and casinos at the Flamingo will close on March 6th and will not reopen until the hotel rooms are ready on March 6th.
The response at the hotel door was both enthusiastic and varied. Designed by Las Vegas architect Richard Stadelman and Los Angeles interior designer Tom Douglas, the 100-room Flamingo will be billed as “the most luxurious hotel in America,” according to Douglas. There was a green dress, a large Lucite chandelier in the foyer, and the rooms had green, yellow, lime or pink curtains and drapes. Each bedroom included twin beds, Venetian glass chandeliers and green leather sofas. In all, Douglas put the total cost of furnishing each room at about $3,500.
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This aerial photo of the Flamingo from early 1947 shows the amount of work that was still needed after the casino opened.
Columnist Erskine Johnson said the “fire” hotel looked like a “statue from the movie M-G-M”, all “pink phoenixes, pale limestone and palm trees”. Bob Considine wrote that the hotel was “clearly made up of images from a girl’s dream of a paradise joint.” Ed Sullivan informed readers that he had heard the new hotel was “out of this world” and that Malcolm Bingay spoke highly, concluding that with a portion of the hotel’s assets intact, “Bugs reign in all their glory.”
Yet the lavish public did little to resist Siegel’s financial challenges. Two of its shells were built for $1,150,000 by Phoenix builder Del Webb. Everyone tried to improve their income. Flamingo began to host small meetings, and its public Hank Grinspoon in the hotel on special nights, bingo games, afternoons, and machine drawing to attract more players.
Although he completed both the casino and the hotel, Siegel did not see the success of the Flamingo after his assassination on June 20, 1947 in Beverly Hills. The Flamingo became the model hotel-casino of the Las Vegas hotel of the 1950s, with luxurious accommodations, headline celebrities, and a variety of gambling options.
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Larry Gragg is a Distinguished Professor of Nursing at Missouri State University
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