LAS VEGAS (AP) — A downtown Las Vegas hotel that opened in 1906 with rooms for $1 and became well-known for its 50-cent shrimp cocktail appetizers is marking the completion of a $15 million renovation and expansion project.
The remake of the city's oldest hotel, including the addition of a five-story wing of 14 suites and two penthouses, has been unveiled in recent days with a splashy campaign and the catchphrase "What happens in Vegas started at the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino."
The new Golden Gate suites were modeled with nods to famous former guests such as "Rat Pack"-era performers Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. Modern room amenities include oversize beds and high-definition flat-screen televisions with surround sound.
The shrimp cocktails that the Golden Gate began serving in 1959 now cost $2.99 at the property, where the added rooms bring the total number to 122.
Golden Gate president and co-owner Mark Brandenburg said the goal was to highlight vintage Vegas.
The remodeled lobby of the property at 1 Fremont St. is lit by a vintage hotel sign that once marked the exterior and is now positioned behind the front desk. Other features include 1907 gambling ledgers, a model of Las Vegas' first telephone, and Prohibition-era whiskey bottles that officials say were found in the walls during construction.
Modern upgrades include a new valet awning and revolving-door entrance, an expanded casino and a high-limit room featuring Roaring '20s-era flapper-inspired decor, dancing dealers and maximum bets of $5,000 a hand on blackjack.