Circus Circus Las Vegas

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Circus Circus Las Vegas
Circus Circus Las Vegas logo 2.jpg
Circus Circus with "tent" in front and the Adventuredome behind it.
Location Winchester, Nevada, U.S.
Address 2880 South Las Vegas Boulevard
Opening date October 18, 1968; 47 years ago (October 18, 1968)
Theme Circus
Number of rooms 3,773
Total gaming space 123,928 sq ft (11,513.3 m2)
Permanent shows None
Signature attractions Adventuredome
Carnival midway
Circus acts
Slots-A-Fun Casino
Notable restaurants Bars
Blue Iguana Mexican Express
Circus Buffet
Horse-A-Round Snack Bar
The Garden Grill
The Steakhouse
Vince Neil's Eat - Drink - Party
Westside Deli
Owner MGM Resorts International
Previous names None
Renovated in 1972, 1975, 1979, 1980, 1985, 1986, 1993, 1996, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2013
Website Official website

Circus Circus Las Vegas is a hotel and 123,928 sq ft (11,513.3 m2) casino located on the Las Vegas Strip in Winchester, Nevada.[1] It is owned and operated by MGM Resorts International. Circus Circus features circus acts and carnival type games daily on the Midway.

Circus Circus is the largest permanent big top in the world. The Lucky The Clown marquee at the entrance was provided by Young Electric Sign Company, and was constructed in 1976.[2]

Previous owners of Circus Circus Las Vegas were Jay Sarno (1968–1974) and Mandalay Resort Group, formerly known as Circus Circus Enterprises (1974–2005)


Performers in the Circus

Circus Circus was opened on October 18, 1968 by Jay Sarno, becoming the flagship casino for Circus Circus Enterprises. Architects Rissman and Rissman Associates designed a giant circus tent shaped main structure, which was built by R.C. Johnson Construction of Las Vegas.

At its opening, the $15 million facility only included a casino. The lack of a hotel resulted in financial problems, as the casino was not able to attract high rollers. Sarno obtained a $23 million loan from the Teamsters Pension Fund to construct a hotel. As part of the arrangement, the Chicago Outfit's enforcer, Anthony Spilotro (under the name of Tony Stuart) was granted a gift shop concession in the hotel. In addition to a government investigation into the organized-crime connections, Sarno was also being investigated for tax code violations. The casino's financial problems also continued and Sarno, along with his partner Stanley Mallin, decided to sell out.[3]

In 1974, ownership changed with the sale of the casino to William Bennett and William Pennington for $25 million. The facility was expanded with hotel tower additions in 1972, 1980, 1985, 1986 and 1996.[4]

Film history[edit]

Circus Circus at night

The hotel's famous midway was featured in the 1971 James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever.

In his journalistic novel of the early 1970s, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Hunter S. Thompson wrote, "The Circus-Circus is what the whole hep world would be doing Saturday night if the Nazis had won the war. This is the sixth Reich. The ground floor is full of gambling tables, like all the other casinos . . . but the place is about four stories high, in the style of a circus tent, and all manner of strange County-Fair/Polish Carnival madness is going on up in this space." When the Thompson work was adapted to film in 1998, the fictional "Bazooko Circus" was a thinly-veiled stand-in for the world-famed resort, which had refused permission for the filmmakers to shoot on their property.

The Adventuredome Theme Park and the Canyon Blaster roller coaster were featured in the 1999 movie Baby Geniuses. The theme park was known as Joyworld in the movie.

Characters in 1977's post-apocalyptic Damnation Alley seek out at the abandoned Circus Circus to play.

Landmark Circus Circus Clown Sign
Vintage Clown Sign at night

In Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery, Austin and Vanessa sneak into the Circus Circus.

In the 1992 movie Honey, I Blew Up the Kid, the oversized child Adam is shown laughing and smiling at the Lucky the Clown pylon.

The Midway was featured in the 1978 film Corvette Summer, when Mark Hamill was being lured into a scam by a "salesman".

In the game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Circus Circus is featured as The Clown's Pocket.

In the TV series Vega$, private detective Dan Tanna (Robert Urich) lived in a converted warehouse next to Circus Circus, and was often shown driving past the resort in his classic Ford Thunderbird.

Adventuredome Theme Park[edit]

Main article: Adventuredome

Amenities and entertainment[edit]

Circus Circus also offers:


  1. ^ "Listing of Financial Statements Square Footage". Nevada Gaming Control Board. Retrieved March 16, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Neon Survey: Circus Circus". 2010-04-05. Retrieved 2012-04-08. 
  3. ^ Super Casino by Pete Earley; Bantam Books 2000 ISBN 0-553-09502-1
  4. ^ "Las Vegas History - Circus Circus". Retrieved 2012-04-08. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°08′13″N 115°09′48″W / 36.13694°N 115.16333°W / 36.13694; -115.16333