Lucky Dragon opens for business in Las Vegas - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Lucky Dragon opens for business in Las Vegas

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Artist rendering shows the Lucky Dragon hotel-casino. Artist rendering shows the Lucky Dragon hotel-casino.

After a tumultuous timeline that put its construction in doubt, the Lucky Dragon hotel-casino just off the Las Vegas Strip opened to the public Saturday.

The hotel property located on Sahara Avenue just west of Las Vegas Boulevard opened its doors two weeks early.

According to the Lucky Dragon, the official grand opening will still be marked with an extravagant series of Asian demonstrations including a firecracker show on Dec. 3.

And, as a way to live up to its name, the opening will include a lion and dragon dance, which is a cultural means of bringing good luck and good fortune to all, according to the Lucky Dragon.

"We're putting the Asian cultures first and allowing the American culture to follow behind," said Dave Jacoby, chief operating officer of the Lucky Dragon. "We've really built the resort to focus on those players, give face and respect to those players and those important customers."

The hotel features more baccarat and less blackjack. It has authentic Chinese food and an ornate dragon center piece. 

David Schwartz, the director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas said the boutique hotel phenomenon is taking off on the Las Vegas Strip. The Monte Carlo is also breaking the decades old hotel into two different properties, one of which carrying less than 300 rooms. 

"I think it shoes that a smaller casino could be the way to go. There are a lot of casinos on the strip now, but this is something more intimate and could appeal to more players'" Schwartz said. 

The hotel opened job applications for positions at the property back in the fall and the hotel started taking reservations through its website in October.

Earlier this year, the property announced it gained financing after a request for funds last year with the city of Las Vegas fell through.

Lucky Dragon, which was originally eyed for an August opening, will hold 203 total hotel rooms, a collection of dining, a 27,500-square-foot gaming floor with a majority of Asian casino games, a spa and a tea garden.

It is the first newly built casino near the Las Vegas Strip since 2010. 

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