Las Vegas serves every vice.
The city serves gluttony with its endless supply of restaurants and all-you-can-eat buffets that range from absurdly cheap to pricey. Sin City is covered in greed as people try to win at tables and slot machines.
Lust, as you might imagine, is happening all over town in bars, strip clubs, and in many adult-themed shows. And of course, there’s the pride you feel when you hit the jackpot and the envy when you see someone else win one. Anger may be less bearable when you’re in Las Vegas but slothfulness comes into play when you’re lounging by the pool or deciding that sleeping until noon makes sense.
Few things are taboo in Las Vegas. You can drink too much, eat until you can barely leave the table, and while prostitution is legal outside city limits, this is more technical than reality. Sin City has also become a Pot City where not only cannabis has been legalized for recreational use, but consumption lounges have been approved and will open soon.
There’s no sin on the table in Las Vegas, but a group of casino workers really want to change that.
Las Vegas workers seek historic ban
Currently, only MGM Resorts International’s (MGM) Park MGM actually prohibits smoking. Other casinos, including Caesars Entertainment’s (CZR) Caesar’s Palace and Win (where) Wynn and Encore properties have robust ventilation systems as well as smoke-free partitions.
Casinos are actually an exception to Nevada’s smoking laws.
“The Nevada Clean Air Act prohibits smoking indoors except for tobacco stores, strip clubs, private residences, some independent bars, and of course casinos. While indoor smoking is illegal in most parts of the country, gamblers can still do it. Casinos in Vegas are lit up. Vegas to displease the non-smokers around them,” reported the then Las Vegas and Now newspaper.
This is something casino employees against the effects of smoking or CEASE want to change. Group representatives spoke to reporters outside the recent World Game Show, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported,
The group, which is based in Atlantic City, New Jersey, founded the Las Vegas branch.
“I’ve been in the casino industry for over 26 years, and frankly, I’m sick and tired of having people blow toxic secondhand smoke straight into my face on a daily basis,” said Pete Nacarelli, a table games dealer in Atlantic City and co-founder of CEASE in New Jersey.
Could a smoking ban happen in Las Vegas and Las Vegas?
While MGM, Caesars, and Wynn have tried to make their properties less smoke, casino operators have largely resisted the smoking ban. They have widely argued that a smoking ban would hurt their earnings. That may not actually be true, according to an independent study by Las Vegas-based C3 Gaming, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.
“As a nation, we’ve seen a cultural shift away from smoking with fewer Americans smoking cigarettes,” Amanda Bellarmino, assistant professor at UNLV’s William F. Harrah College of Hospitality, told the newspaper. “I think the trend towards more smoke-free space will continue,” she said. “Casinos can help attract employees who do not want to be exposed to secondhand smoke as well as guests. I think we may see a time when a few casinos allow smoking in certain areas.”
Smoking bans were previously out of the question, but the COVID-19 pandemic has caused many casinos to outlaw or limit the practice. This ban has been rolled back with the removal of mask rules and social distancing policies with the lifting of Covid-era restrictions.
A smoking ban seems unlikely even if the data suggests that it might actually be good for business.
“Data from multiple jurisdictions clearly indicate that smoking bans are no longer causing a significant decline in gaming revenue,” the C3 report said. In fact, non-smoking properties seem to perform better than those that still allow smoking.