The History of the Golden Gate Casino in Las Vegas

The History of the Golden Gate Casino in Las Vegas

Las Vegas continues to reinvent itself, wiping out many of its original hotels and casinos in the process.

Downtown Las Vegas still holds some of its earliest memories – The Golden Gate Casino, originally opened as Hotel Nevada in 1906.

This property has weathered gambling prohibition, the Great Depression and construction of Hoover Dam to remain as a landmark and destination for historic nostalgia seekers.

Hotel Nevada

The Golden Gate Casino is one of Downtown Las Vegas’ oldest and smallest hotels, having opened its doors in 1906. Offering both classic Vegas vibes and modern conveniences alike, this historic hotel has something special for all visitors.

This hotel is part of the Fremont Street Experience and features a casino. It also has modern rooms that come complete with flat-screen TVs and their own private bathroom.

John F. Miller began construction of what would eventually become the two-story hotel and casino in downtown Las Vegas in 1905, according to UNLV history professor Michael Green.

As the city expanded, hotels and casinos began to spring up along the Strip; however, Downtown took its time to catch up. By the 1950s and 1960s, downtown had become home to several luxurious resorts.

At this thriving time, Las Vegas’ economy was driven by a surge of gambling and an extensive construction project at Hoover Dam. Many believed Las Vegas to be the place to be at this moment.

Sal Sagev

The Golden Gate Casino in Las Vegas has a rich heritage that dates back centuries. This iconic structure has weathered prohibition of gambling and alcohol, the Great Depression, construction of Hoover Dam and more to remain standing today.

In the 1950s, Las Vegas became a haven for gamblers from around the globe. They came to play their favorite games and enjoy the hotel’s hospitality.

As a result, the hotel developed an enthusiastic following and earned itself a reputation for quality. It also remained one of the top casinos in Las Vegas for decades.

Today, The Golden Gate seamlessly merges vintage and modern elements to provide an opulent experience. Its renovation and expansion include brand-new luxury suites, an exquisite high limit pit, and more for guests to enjoy.

The hotel is renowned for its cheap shrimp cocktail, served from 1959 to 2017. This dish remains on the menu today and has been repeatedly named “Best of Las Vegas”.


The Golden Gate Casino in Las Vegas pays homage to classic Las Vegas with speakeasy waitresses, machine guns on the walls, and even some flapper-inspired servers carrying drinks. Plus you’ll find several bars inside including Bar Prohibition!

It’s a popular spot to drink. They offer an array of alcoholic slushies and friendly bartenders who entertain customers with their flair.

There’s one bar at The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas that pays homage to prohibition-era Vegas: Barbershop Cuts and Cocktails. Situated behind a janitor’s closet door, this hidden gem can be found just inside The Cosmopolitan’s entrance.

At the turn of the 20th century, Las Vegas was a remote desert outpost that often went overlooked on the way to or from California. This helped it avoid strong enforcement of Prohibition laws until Prohibition’s height, when its agents began making long-term raids there.

Great Depression

The Golden Gate Casino, a landmark on Fremont Street for over 100 years, is the oldest and most historic of all Las Vegas hotels and casinos. It has seen it all: prohibition of gambling and alcohol; the Great Depression; as well as Hoover Dam’s construction.

The Great Depression, a global economic downturn that began in 1929, marked an important juncture in both American and global history. It brought with it widespread unemployment and massive economic contraction that took years to recover from.

Many factors contributed to the Great Depression, such as the stock market crash of October 29, 1929 and subsequent financial panic. Nonetheless, President Franklin Roosevelt’s “New Deal” provided a much-needed solution to America’s economic woes. Through his initiatives, many laws were created which helped combat the depression and eventually allowed for full employment and output again.

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