Rio Casino Reopens in Las Vegas Amid Temporary Closures on the Strip
Posted on: December 23, 2020, 01:40h.
Last updated on: December 23, 2020, 01:50h.
The Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas reopened this week after being closed since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic nine months ago. This comes as some resorts on the Strip are closing hotel towers in the middle of the week because of low demand.
Beginning Wednesday, the off-Strip Rio is accepting hotel room reservations every day of the week through Jan. 3. After that, the resort only will take room reservations from Thursdays through Mondays, according to a statement on the Caesars Entertainment website.
The gaming floor will remain open all week. Self-parking is free at the Rio. There is no valet service for now.
Among the new amenities at the property is a William Hill sportsbook with self-service betting kiosks.
On Tuesday, the first day the Rio reopened, executives and entertainers began handing out 20,000 frozen turkeys and cookies to Caesars Entertainment employees. This contactless holiday giveaway lasts through Thursday, the company website states.
The Rio is the final Caesars Entertainment property to reopen in the Las Vegas Valley.
Las Vegas Tourism Slowdown
On the Strip, all hotel-casinos are back in operation, according to the American Gaming Association website. The Strip includes 20 major resorts in a three-mile stretch. They range from the Sahara at the northern end to the Mandalay Bay at the southern end near the airport. The Strip is outside Las Vegas city limits.
Though the resorts on the Strip have opened again, at least a half dozen have limited their hours of operation. This move was brought about by a pandemic-related slump in tourism.
Some resorts are only accepting weekend room reservations, while keeping their gaming floors open all week. Other have closed all operations during the middle of the week, but are open on weekends.
In downtown Las Vegas, most major hotel-casino are open. However, the Main Street Station Casino, Brewery and Hotel has not reopened. The Boyd Gaming property is expected to begin operating again next year.
Riverboat Casino Still Closed
When COVID-19 cases began to spike in March, Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak (D) ordered casinos to close statewide.
The governor allowed casinos to reopen June 4. Some hotel-casinos began operating right away. Others reopened over time during the summer and fall. Some implemented new concepts upon reopening. The Cromwell on the east side of the Strip now is an adults-only property. Park MGM on the west side near T-Mobile Arena is the Strip’s first smoke-free hotel-casino.
The 2,522-suite Rio, which first opened 30 years ago, is just west of Caesars Palace.
While Caesars Entertainment’s resorts in Southern Nevada are open, one of its properties in another part of the country is expected to remain closed until 2022. This property is the Isle of Capri in Lake Charles, Louisiana. The riverboat casino came unmoored during Hurricane Laura in August and struck a bridge. No one was injured in the incident.
Caesars Entertainment expects to furlough 336 employees at that property starting Feb. 1, according to The Advocate newspaper in Baton Rouge.
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