The Mirage Casino Closes for Good This Summer and Will Be Replaced By a Guitar-Shaped Hotel

Eater Vegas
The Mirage Casino Closes for Good This Summer and Will Be Replaced By a Guitar-Shaped Hotel
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True to its namesake, the Mirage Casino will fade from view this summer, the property closing permanently — with plans to reopen in three years as a nearly 700-foot-tall guitar-shaped hotel. Born in the ’80s, the Mirage helped usher in a new era for Las Vegas, one defined by luxury and mega-resorts. It will close on July 17 of this year.

In December of 2022, Hard Rock International took over ownership and operations of the property, with plans to transform the 80-acre Mirage into the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino and Guitar Hotel Las Vegas. It will be the second Strip casino to close this year — joining the Tropicana Las Vegas, which closed in April after 67 years to make room for a $1.5 billion baseball stadium.

The closure means more than 3,000 employees will be laid off. “We are planning to host collaborative hiring events with other employers in the Las Vegas community over the coming months,” Joe Lupo, president of the Mirage said in a news release. Hard Rock plans to pay approximately $80 million in severance packages.

The Culinary and Bartenders Unions — which have represented about 1,700 hospitality workers since the Mirage’s opening — claim that contract protections secured last year ensure that workers can receive a payment of $2,000 for every year of service and maintain seniority rights when the hotel reopens as the Hard Rock.

The Mirage closure means the end of the Cirque du Soleil Beatles-themed show, Love, and the resort’s volcano fountain — which was one of the first attractions on the Las Vegas Strip, predating the Fountains at Bellagio. The resort was also home to Siegfried & Roy and their white tiger show, which became synonymous with Vegas into the early 2000s. The closure means final service for the resort’s restaurants: Heritage Steakhouse, Osteria Costa, Otoro, Diablo’s Cantina, Pantry, Paradise Cafe, California Pizza Kitchen, and the Still.

If a Hard Rock Hotel Las Vegas sounds familiar, it’s because there used to be one off-Strip, near the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. In 2021, it became the Virgin Las Vegas. Plans for the new Hard Rock include renovations on the three-winged hotel, the glittering lights that spell out “Mirage” to be replaced with those that say “Hard Rock.” And a guitar-shaped tower will loom over the Vegas Strip, six spotlights emanating from its rooftop like the instrument’s strings.

Between construction on the Hard Rock, the implosion of the Tropicana, and the annual road work across Las Vegas Boulevard for the Formula One Grand Prix, the Strip is in for a chaotic few years. And if you plan to take in the Mirage’s volcano show, its plant-filled atrium, or the 20,000-gallon aquarium behind the hotel’s front desk, you only have a couple of months left to do so before they vanish into the desert’s summer heat.