Derek Stevens Announces Circa Las Vegas Resort and City’s Largest Sportsbook

Posted on: January 11, 2019, 09:10h. 

Last updated on: January 11, 2019, 08:42h.

Derek Stevens, the flamboyant owner of the D Casino and Golden Gate in downtown Las Vegas, unveiled plans this week for a 777-room hotel resort that will be known as Circa.

Derek Stevens Circa Las Vegas casino
Derek Stevens is bringing Circa to downtown Las Vegas in 2020. (Image: Sam Morris/Las Vegas News Bureau)

After months of speculation, Stevens announced the name and integrated resort concept on Thursday after Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman delivered her State of the City address.

The blueprint shows Circa will measure 1.25 million square feet, feature a split-level casino, 44-story hotel tower – the tallest building downtown – five restaurants including a sub-level steakhouse, nine-story parking garage, and “the biggest sportsbook in Las Vegas history.”

Stevens said the sportsbook will be a three-story attraction and will be equipped with the largest television display in town.

Circa is being built on the former grounds of the Las Vegas Club, Mermaids, and Glitter Gulch club. It will be the first from-the-ground-up casino resort to be built in downtown Las Vegas in decades.

Name Game

There were plenty of rumors in 2018 that Stevens was going to name his resort Grandissimo. Caesars Palace and Circus Circus developer Jay Sarno had floated ideas for a mega casino with that moniker decades ago, and Stevens today owns the naming rights.

But Grandissimo was pushed aside for Circa. Stevens says the brand is a nod to eras of the past. A video on the casino’s website features Las Vegas’ storied history, and Circa plans to incorporate previous generations with modern touches.

Today, channeling the spirit of those legendary pioneers of the past, we’re taking their vision beyond all they’ve done before and going all-in,” the marketing video declares. “To create a new mark on Fremont Street that celebrates the timeless spirit of the city.”

“An experience that spans generations,” the spot concludes.

Downtown Las Vegas has been thriving in recent years. The region has seen gross gambling revenue jump from $493.4 million in 2010, to more than $631 million in 2017.

The world-famous Fremont Street Experience canopy is undergoing a $32 million upgrade this year. The overhaul will greatly improve the clarity of the video screen, and allow it to be illuminated during the daytime.

Casino Construction

Circa is being designed by Steelman Partners, a Las Vegas firm that has plenty of experience designing some of the world’s most iconic integrated resorts. Led by founder Paul Steelman, the architectural group’s portfolio includes the Solaire Resort in the Philippines, Galaxy Macau, and under-construction Resorts World Las Vegas.

Steelman’s casino client list includes Las Vegas Sands, Caesars, Melco Resorts, MGM, Galaxy Entertainment, and Seminole Tribe.

Stevens says Circa will be completed by December 2020.

“I think this is great seeing these big projects coming together, between the Raiders’ stadium, Resorts World, and Circa, I think there is so much pent-up demand around the country for people to come back to Las Vegas,” Stevens told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “I think it’s just terrific that we have some great new projects coming to Las Vegas and more reasons for people to come visit us.”