It’s a good time to be in the gambling business and there is no better place to be than at the epicenter of it all – Las Vegas, Nevada! The January gaming revenue report revealed optimistic numbers throughout Nevada but Vegas continues to lead the way.
Vegas Shines Brightly
January of 2022 was the 11th consecutive billion-dollar month for land-based Nevada casinos. It was also an enormous rise over the previous January, spiraling from $762 million to $1.1 billion, a 40 percent increase in one year. But once we peel back the onion and take a deeper dive into these numbers we can see that Clark County, home of the Las Vegas Strip, contributed the overwhelming share of gambling revenue, making up a staggering 84 percent of the $1.1 billion or $929 million.
And if we delve even further, we see that the Strip produced $567 million all by itself with the Boulder Strip finishing a distant second with $85 million in revenue. Downtown Las Vegas followed with $67.7 million while Reno generated $52.3 million. But it is not only the casinos that are hitting home runs, the hotel and tourism industry in Las Vegas is skyrocketing. January of 2022 saw 2.47 million tourists roam the streets of Las Vegas which is up a stunning 91 percent from the previous year. And while the numbers are impressive, they have yet to fully recover to the pre-pandemic heights of January 2019 when 3.46 million visited Vegas.
Masks Down Business Up
It’s no coincidence that the thawing of COVID-19 government mandates has sparked the gaming renaissance taking place in Las Vegas. In early February, Nevada Governor, Steve Sisolak, rescinded the mask mandate. “I’m hopeful and confident based on the data that we have, that we’re in a good position to drop this to give people back some freedom,” Sisolak said. “There comes a time where you have to weigh the benefits of the mask versus the difficulties or the downside of wearing a mask, and today is the day that we decided that the scale tilts,” the governor added.
Once the governor made his announcement, the Nevada Gaming Control Board immediately informed the casino operators that masks and face coverings were no longer required. The Governor tweeted later, “We are at this point now because as Nevadans we always look out for one another – that’s our Battle Born spirit and that’s the Nevada way.” And although those restrictions were still in place in January, the ability to travel and move freely about was a major factor in the tourism rebirth of Las Vegas. Now that the mask mandates have been lifted, experts are certain the numbers will climb even higher.
It is also important to note that Las Vegas now boasts two professional sports teams, the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights and the NFL’s Las Vegas Raiders. This has long been the dream of Nevadans who understood the importance of having professional sports franchises to bolster its status as a world-class city. And now that the pandemic appears to be in its final phase, the tourist and gaming industry throughout the state should continue its impressive ascent.
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