Las Vegas Riviera Upgrading

Anthony Curtis’ nationally syndicated weekly column.

May 9, 2012

The north-Strip Riviera is preparing to begin a $20-$30 million upgrade project. Similar to a recent $20 million renovation at the Stratosphere, most of the work will involve much-needed improvements to the public areas of the resort. Specifically targeted is the convention space, which will have its entrance built out and house the relocated front desk. Other parts of the interior will also be spruced up and the casino’s exterior will get a new paint job. The physical improvements follow several innovative promotions the Riviera has implemented recently, most targeted toward attracting casino players. It’s all part of a bigger plan to raise the profile of one of the longest-operating casinos in Las Vegas.

Palms Book: The new sports book at the Palms has opened. Big screens of different sizes telecast multiple games simultaneously and there’s an adjoining poker room at the front. It’s located in the same space as the previous Palms book and run by Cantor Gaming, which also runs the sports books at M Resort, Hard Rock, Tropicana, Venetian/Palazzo, and Cosmopolitan.

Ramsay Restaurant: Gordon Ramsay’s new restaurant opened this week at Paris. Gordon Ramsay Steak will be the first Las Vegas presence for the top chef and TV celebrity.

Big Elvis: After more than a decade playing the lounge at Bill’s Gamblin’ Hall & Saloon, Big Elvis has moved to Harrah’s. An afternoon staple during his tenure at Bill’s, look for Big E to continue with daytime performances at his new home.

Question: When did Planet Hollywood (the restaurant not the casino) close?

Answer: Planet Hollywood in the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace closed in April, but only so it could move from the first to the third floor of the Forum Shops. It reopened this week with a completely revamped look, menu, and (hipper) attitude.

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