Coronavirus be damned, the city of Las Vegas is expecting massive tourism on New Year’s Eve. And yes, there will be plenty of poker games running if you’re not into the party scene.
According to a popular local Twitter account, the city is expecting 200,000 visitors on New Year’s Eve. That’s way down compared to most years, but still a huge number given the global health pandemic the world is struggling to stop.
Outside of New York City, Las Vegas is considered by many to be the top place to party on New Year’s Eve. The famous Strip typically features concerts and fireworks as the city rings in the new year. But things will be a bit different due to COVID-19. There won’t be any fireworks or concerts along the Strip this year.
Where to get some action
The party scene won’t be as happening this New Year’s Eve as in most years. So you might as well ring in the new year at the poker table instead, if you’re coming to town.
You’ll be glad to know there are plenty of places to play poker in Sin City. Southern Nevada currently has 19 poker rooms open after the Westgate recently reopened for the first time in nearly a month.
If you were in town at this time last year, that number may seem a bit light, and it is. Since the coronavirus struck, 12 of the previously-open poker rooms have remained closed and likely will for quite some time, or for good.
But all the top poker rooms in town (Aria, Bellagio, Caesars Palace, Red Rock Resort, Venetian, and Wynn) will be in action on New Year’s Eve. You’ll find plenty of juicy cash games with drunken tourists just giving money away.
If you’re looking to hop into a tournament, there are many options on December 31 (and New Year’s Day). Over at Venetian, New Year’s Eve features a $250 buy-in ($10,000 guaranteed) turbo event starting at 11:10 am. That tournament would be ideal for the poker player who wants to party at night as it will likely end long before the ball drops.
On New Year’s Day, Venetian is also hosting an $1,100 buy-in MSPT at 11 am, with $250,000 guaranteed. Over at Bally’s, a Caesars Entertainment property, the $1,500 buy-in Main Event kicks off January 1. You can attempt to satellite into that one for $185 at 8 pm on NYE.
Where to stay
Normally, hotels in Las Vegas are insanely expensive on New Year’s Eve. Even low-end motels such as Motel 6 can cost over $200 for just one night. But the rooms are going for a bit less this year, although they’re still expensive.
If you’re looking for a decent budget hotel that won’t break the bank on the Strip, your best bet is to stay at Sahara, which is located on the north end of the Strip. According to Hotels.com, Sahara is going for $79 (plus $43 resort fee paid at the hotel). The casino has a small poker room, but it’s the only card room within walking distance.
If money isn’t a factor, Bellagio and Venetian, two of the fanciest hotels in town, are going for around $500.
Featured image source: Flickr