I have made video tours of many Las Vegas casino/hotels. Friday was the first time I was told I couldn’t take “overall” pictures in a casino/hotel. I had previously taken videos with broad views of sports books, restaurants, e-sports arenas, fountains, etc. I was not stopped at venues such as MGM Grand, The Wynn, Excalibur, El Cortez or Bellagio. But there is always a first.
Because of procrastination and a shopping “thing”, I didn’t get to the week’s planned video tour until Friday. The plan was to visit Palace Station, the original locals casino opened by Frank Fertitta Jr. in July of 1976. The property has been undergoing extensive renovation and I wanted to see and share the results.
I parked near the main entrance and started my tour. I had made my way to the renovated Sports Book area which was empty at the time, when a young Palace Station security guard stopped me saying I could not take “overall” pictures in this casino. I could only take photos of a friend in the casino.
I was dumbfounded. I explained who I was and what I do, but the young man was not to be deterred. He offered to call his supervisor, which he did, and he came back with the information that I needed to contact Lori Nelson, Station Casinos Vice President of Corporate Communications, for permission. (As I’ve said before, love those corporations!)
Because I was traveling light during my photo visit (no purse, just bulging pockets in my jacket). I then returned to my car to get at my phone in order to Google Lori and get a phone number. I found two phone numbers for her. The first number I called was in the Station Casinos PR department and a young man heard my story but said he doesn’t “handle” Palace Station and said I must talk with Lori Nelson. He gave me yet a third number to reach her. When I called that number, a voice mail answer said that Lori wasn’t available, but if the caller is a working journalist and is on a deadline (I was) I could call another number. I called that number and another voice mail message said if I left a message (I did), I would receive a prompt return call.
So as not to miss the prompt return call, I stored my phone in my bra next to my heart and returned to Palace Station. I had swiped my Station Casinos’ player’s card earlier and received a coupon for a half-price buffet. To pass time, I decided to check out Palace Station’s Feast Buffet, have lunch and wait for my cell phone to ring.
No call during lunch, so after lunch I sat down at a slot machine trying to win the money I had lost earlier (I won back most of it.) With three dogs at home awaiting lunch, I then headed for home to feed my four-legged family and wait for the call. Five hours later, I sat down to write this story. Lori still hadn’t called.
By the way, the renovated buffet was quite nice and I enjoyed lunch, especially the Sesame Cauliflower. Figuring the security guy I encountered earlier would not have sent word complex-wide to look out for the “mature” lady in a green coat with bulging pockets taking overall photos, I took a couple photos.
Attention Palace Station: my no-video is your loss. On YouTube alone, my casino tours have been seen by as many as 23,000 potential visitors. The readers at this site, many of them locals, add even more icing on the cake.
Can I hear an “Amen” from the crowd? Amen.
P.S. Friday was not a complete loss. Friday evening a friend and I went out to dinner and then walked to Le Cabaret at Paris Las Vegas to see a group we love, These Guys Worldwide. In the past I had heard These Guys mainly as an acapella group, so seeing them rock the house to music tracks was something new. The crowd loved them. I took just a few videos of These Guys (Jazarri, Josh, Erik and Thomas)…and it is below.