The Stardust Hotel and Casino
This is the story of the infamous yet glamorous Stardust casino in Las Vegas. Contact us if you have any memories or pictures of the Stardust?
Tony Stralla was the original personality behind the inception of the famous Stardust casino. The business model here was to charge $5 a day for rooms and to give each customer $5 in chips! A bit like a welcome bonus with a deposit match bonus you may get at an online casino today.
It was a casino everyone could visit for the people. It was said it lacked the elegance of The Desert Inn and the sophistication of The Sands. But you didn’t need to be a high roller or celebrity to enjoy The Stardust.
A Troubled Start
Initially, the Stardust was scheduled to open in 1955 only to be later stripped of its gambling license due to state zoning issues. Mr. Las Vegas Mo Dalitz. was then part of a group that purchases still unfinished struggling license-less Stardust. The film Casino starring Robert De Nero was based on the story of the Stardust casino and hotel.
Was the Film Casino Based on This Property?
The movie “Casino” is indeed based on the history of the Stardust Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. However, like many movies based on real events, it takes some liberties with the truth for dramatic effect.
“Casino” was directed by Martin Scorsese and released in 1995. The movie tells the story of Sam “Ace” Rothstein (played by Robert De Niro), a Jewish-American gambling expert who is recruited by the Chicago Outfit to run the Tangiers Casino in Las Vegas. Ace’s success attracts the attention of the mafia and leads to his downfall, as well as the downfall of his best friend and enforcer, Nicky Santoro (played by Joe Pesci), and his wife, Ginger McKenna (played by Sharon Stone).
The Stardust Resort and Casino, which opened in 1958 and closed in 2006, was indeed run by the mafia in the 1970s and 1980s, and it was one of the most profitable casinos on the Las Vegas Strip. The movie accurately portrays some of the illegal activities that took place at the Stardust, including skimming money from the casino’s profits and using the casino to launder money.
However, some details in the movie are exaggerated or fictionalized for dramatic effect. For example, the character of Sam Rothstein is based on real-life casino manager Frank “Lefty” Rosenthal, but some of the events in the movie are not accurate to his life. Additionally, the character of Nicky Santoro is a composite of several real-life mafia enforcers, and the character of Ginger McKenna is also a composite of several real-life women who were involved with organized crime figures.
Overall, while “Casino” is not a completely accurate portrayal of the history of the Stardust Resort and Casino, it does capture the essence of the corruption and violence that existed in Las Vegas during that era.
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