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New York New York

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1995–1997, Gaskin and Bezanski; Yates-Silverman, interior. Las Vegas Blvd. S.
  • (Carol M. Highsmith Archive, Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress)
  • (Carol M. Highsmith Archive, Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress)
  • (Carol M. Highsmith Archive, Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress)

Continuing the trend of building ducks rather than decorated sheds, one of Las Vegas's newest casinos presents a compressed skyline of Manhattan. Modified versions of such famous landmarks as the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, the Empire State Building, and Lever House, at about one-third their actual size, rise from the base of a single building housing the casino. These towers contain hotel rooms and elevator shafts. Walking south on the Strip, visitors cross a scale model of the Brooklyn Bridge to enter the casino. Though these structures evoke their models, the garish colors, lights, and roller coaster racing around the exterior of the complex leave no doubt that this is Las Vegas. The dark interior, typical of many casinos, allows illuminated gambling machines to dominate the experience by shining brightly in the gloom. Yates-Silverman, a Las Vegas design firm responsible for many of the Strip's newest interiors, created echoes of Times Square and Little Italy as themes for various areas of the gambling floor; a large room called SoHo houses shops. The cage, where much of the casino's cash is stored, is hidden beyond a copy of the New York Stock Exchange facade. Though New York is the theme, the casino's owners intended to re-create not contemporary Manhattan but rather the New York of a generation ago—a mythical and glamorous city. Only the crowds inside give New York New York the population density of the metropolis.

Writing Credits

Julie Nicoletta


What's Nearby


Julie Nicoletta, "New York New York", [Las Vegas, Nevada], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Nevada, Julie Nicoletta. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000, 222-222.

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