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Wavy70
Wavy70
Joined: Nov 3, 2009
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September 5th, 2011 at 12:48:02 AM permalink
Flynn, Give the rooms a try. Not a lot of $$ and they comp easy.
Alan. The reason to go to the Western is gone. Not nearly as scary as it was years ago. Originally Jackie G opened it as a bingo parlor.
I have a bewitched egg that I use to play VP with and I have net over 900k with it.
Greasyjohn
Greasyjohn
Joined: Dec 8, 2013
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December 25th, 2013 at 3:17:31 PM permalink
Quote: pacomartin

El Cortez will be 70 years old next year, and the owner is now age 90. He is the last of the men who created Las Vegas. Jackie lives above the casino (probably the only multi-millionaire who lives downtown) and was the creator of many of the promotions that are commonplace in Vegas. He puts a suit on every day and plays in the tiny three table poker room with the lowest percentage rake of any casino in Vegas.

I think everyone should pay a visit to the El Cortez and try to say hello to Jackie before he dies. He has alzheimers so don't expect much, but it is a tribute to the oldest full service casino (i.e. with hotel rooms and restaurants) left in Vegas. The area of town is not the best, but it is perfectly safe. There are a lot of guards.

About 5 years ago, they cut the number of slot machines in half which provided more room to walk around. They also put in new carpet, air ventilation system, and remodeled the coffee shop. They no longer have the chinese buffet. The Flame is an old-fashioned splurge restaurant, for a lot less money than most places. Many of the employees are older fixtures.

I was there once when one of the performers for Mamma Mia at Mandalay Bay came into the place with the rest of the cast. Since women who have all their teeth are usually a welcome site, she was a huge hit.

The Tower rooms have great views of the strip, and are less than most standard rooms in an ordinary casino. The furniture and TV's are all about 30-40 years old. But the rooms are very big, and some have jacuzzi's. The cabana suites are in an old hotel in the back. The building is in an ugly location, but the rooms are great.

The casino opened before the end of WWII when the population of the city was about 10K. The signage on the outside of the building has never been changed.

The gamblers like the place because they are the only place left that plays single deck, full pay blackjack for a $5 minimum. The double deck game is less of a bargain.



Just wondering. In this post it states that the casino opened "before the end of WW11." Since the ElCo was built in 1941 did it operate as a hotel originally and then open a casino later? Also, while I'm at it, in Wikipedia I noticed that The Pavilion Rooms were added in 1963. The Vintage Rooms are what the two floors above the casino are called now. So are the Pavilion Rooms the third floor and the original hotel only had one floor of rooms--the second floor? I'm editing as I go along. Just noticed a photo from the late '40s and there are three floors to the original structure. Further editing; Just called the El Co and asked; front desk manager does not know but wished me a Merry Christmas.
onenickelmiracle
onenickelmiracle
Joined: Jan 26, 2012
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December 25th, 2013 at 4:04:39 PM permalink
My dad stayed during the sixties. Maybe I'll check it out and return the ash tray. Nice review Paco.
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1BB
1BB
Joined: Oct 10, 2011
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December 25th, 2013 at 4:19:33 PM permalink
Paco's review is over three years old. Time for an update?
Many people, especially ignorant people, want to punish you for speaking the truth. - Mahatma Ghandi
KeyserSoze
KeyserSoze
Joined: Jul 14, 2013
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December 25th, 2013 at 5:11:43 PM permalink
I love the El Cortez; and stay there often.

The rooms on the north side of the tower are pretty damn good. I stayed there last week and my room included a fridge, two couches, a full size desk, king bed, safe, flat screen HDTV (50" I think). Everything works. Always. Never a problem of any type.

One unique thing I like about El C is taking a shower in the morning with the window open. It's not a big window, but big enough to yell at homeless folk walking around below while showering.

Cafe Cortez is a nice way to start the day. And sitting at the bubble craps machine ($1 min bet, 5x odds) with all the scum bags while enjoying a cold beer is a great way to end the day.

The parking garage is fine. Easy to get in and get out.

Each trip I stop into the barber shop and get a relaxing shave from Ernesto. He is one cool dude.

The coffee shop (The Beat) across the street is a cool place to grab a cup of coffee for $1 (morning happy hour) and take advantage of the free WiFi.

No doubt they will sweat your action at the the tables if you're a sharp player, but you can still get some money on the felt in short bursts.

And the Flame Steakhouse will offer a damn fine meal at a square price (definitely if you have one of the coupons from LVA or ACG).

I don't play at the El C often, but it's a great place to stay. Lots to like.
Talent hits a target no one else can hit; genius hits a target no one else can see.
Asswhoopermcdaddy
Asswhoopermcdaddy
Joined: Nov 30, 2009
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December 25th, 2013 at 5:17:19 PM permalink
WizardofEngland,

I played at the El Cortez with my friends and had a good time. I did some craps, BJ, and video poker. It's probably only 1 of 2 times in my history of playing BJ in Las Vegas where I was actually up. In fact, I was up in all three. Sounds like all you really want though is a freebie/comp every now and then. For your action, you definitely should get something.

I'd recommend the off-strip casinos. Anything on-strip is stingy even for your play. Indian reservations also seem to comp a little better too, but it'd be odd to fly to the US for that alone.

If you're not expecting a highly glamorous place, but a decent place to gamble with a few comps, I think you'll be happy going to El Cortez.
teddys
teddys
Joined: Nov 14, 2009
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December 25th, 2013 at 5:24:52 PM permalink
Quote: Greasyjohn

Just wondering. In this post it states that the casino opened "before the end of WW11." Since the ElCo was built in 1941 did it operate as a hotel originally and then open a casino later? Also, while I'm at it, in Wikipedia I noticed that The Pavilion Rooms were added in 1963. The Vintage Rooms are what the two floors above the casino are called now. So are the Pavilion Rooms the third floor and the original hotel only had one floor of rooms--the second floor? I'm editing as I go along. Just noticed a photo from the late '40s and there are three floors to the original structure. Further editing; Just called the El Co and asked; front desk manager does not know but wished me a Merry Christmas.

The Pavilion rooms are above the parking garage.
"Dice, verily, are armed with goads and driving-hooks, deceiving and tormenting, causing grievous woe." -Rig Veda 10.34.4
Greasyjohn
Greasyjohn
Joined: Dec 8, 2013
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December 25th, 2013 at 5:53:17 PM permalink
Quote: teddys

The Pavilion rooms are above the parking garage.



Thanks teddys. I just called them to confirm your wild accusation, and you are right! I just stayed there for the first time in November. I would get out of the North parking garage elevator, walk all the way to the south side of the casino, and all the way around to the Tower elevator, in order to get to my room. Then I discovered the short cut that cut the distance in half (the hallway that passes by the Parlour Bar). Then I discovered that you could just exit the North garage elevator, turn north and go through the door directly to the tower elevator. I enjoy getting to know the layout of places!
andyg99
andyg99
Joined: May 16, 2014
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September 8th, 2014 at 3:03:51 PM permalink
I visited the El Cortez for the first time during my trip a couple of weeks ago. I'll be making it a regular stop when I do my downtown visit during future trips. Something about that place was very cool, maybe that it was small, maybe the history, maybe that the music wasn't making my ears bleed (classic rock was playing at "normal" volume)... and that yellowish-glass on the doors to Fremont Street made looking out to the outside really weird in a good way (it was about 4PM at the time)... anyway I gambled there for about 4 hours and can't wait to return early next year.
AxiomOfChoice
AxiomOfChoice
Joined: Sep 12, 2012
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September 8th, 2014 at 3:19:04 PM permalink
Quote: andyg99

I visited the El Cortez for the first time during my trip a couple of weeks ago. I'll be making it a regular stop when I do my downtown visit during future trips. Something about that place was very cool, maybe that it was small, maybe the history, maybe that the music wasn't making my ears bleed (classic rock was playing at "normal" volume)... and that yellowish-glass on the doors to Fremont Street made looking out to the outside really weird in a good way (it was about 4PM at the time)... anyway I gambled there for about 4 hours and can't wait to return early next year.



Yeah, I agree. The place is a dump but it's a charming dump.

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