The Fiesta Fire Drill

Fiesta Henderson

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When moving to Las Vegas in 2001, one of the first things I learned is that Las Vegas loves to blow stuff up. It seemed like it was a monthly event that something, an old casino, an old bridge, something was being blown up. I loved it!!

When it came time for one of the big casinos to meet its maker, like the Riviera, for example, they didn’t just let it go down. They burned it, scorched it, bombed it, raided it, and even hosed it down.

What I mean is that the owners of the doomed properties have a habit of turning the property over to people who can use it for the betterment of Las Vegas.

In Henderson and soon in North Las Vegas, the Fiesta Casino is about to be demolished to make way for new housing development. As if we need more housing!

Anyway, this week the Henderson and Las Vegas fire departments are doing real-world exercises in the empty property. They do almost anything they want to the property and create real-life scenarios they would encounter in an open casino without the worry of doing damage.

This being a single tower property, I’m guessing just the fire departments get to play. I remember when they did this to the Riviera, they had multiple towers and each tower had a different agency. Homeland Security. The FBI, The IRS (just joking, maybe). Metro.

The MGM Fire

In 1981, we had the MGM Fire. Killing 85 people One of the problems the Las Vegas Fire and Rescue had was the fact that they were not properly trained on high-rise fires. They never had to deal with them before. Because of exercises like this, that problem has been resolved.

The Fiesta Henderson

The resort was first opened in 1998 as The Reserve. Halfway between the Strip and Boulder City/Lake Mead. Its target market was the leisure traveler coming into las Vegas from Arizona or California. Large open parking lot with room for boat trailers, RV’s, and tractor trailers.

The hotel part was a single 10-story structure with 224 rooms. Attached was a 37,000 sqft casino plus a food court and movie theater.

in 2000, the owner of the property, Ameristar did a property swap with Las Vegas local casino operator, Stations Casino for property in Missouri. Changing the name to The Fiesta Henderson to match a similar property they acquired in North Las Vegas already named the Fiesta.

It was closed with the other casinos in 2020, due to the pandemic. Stations already have two other resorts in the neighborhood, so they never reopened the property. property.

Due to the mass exodus of Californians, coming here, Las Vegas valley property values are skyrocketing. The land alone is worth more than anything an open casino would generate, so they are redeveloping it into multi-family housing.

No date has been set for the demolition.

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