Casino legend and gaming pioneer Jackie Gaughan will celebrate his 91th birthday by sharing cake and champagne with El Cortez (click link to book) guests on Monday, Oct. 24 from noon to 6 p.m.  Guests are also welcomed to sign a giant birthday card for the Las Vegas pioneer.

Gaughan owned or operated several hotels and casinos during his career including the Flamingo, Showboat Casino, Union Plaza Hotel & Casino, Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas Club Hotel & Casino, Gold Spike Hotel & Casino, Western Casino and the El Cortez.

Although he is now retired, the El Cortez penthouse remains Gaughan’s home. On most days, Gaughan can still be spotted playing poker on the El Cortez casino floor.

Gaughan’s influence over Las Vegas is seen to this day. He was one of the pioneers to bring boxing to Las Vegas, and his knowledge of slots made him one of the city’s top experts, with other casino owners coming to him for advice. He was also the first casino owner to institute ”funbooks” for playing customers. Current Las Vegas visionary Steve Wynn credits Gaughan for helping him get his start at the Golden Nugget.

About El Cortez Hotel & Casino

Celebrating its 70th anniversary in 2011, El Cortez Hotel & Casino is the longest continuously operating hotel-casino in Las Vegas. The iconic property can be found in historic downtown Las Vegas at 600 East Fremont Street and is the only casino in the city’s burgeoning Fremont East Entertainment District.  With 300 newly remodeled hotel rooms, including four uniquely themed suites that resulted from the 2010 Design A Suite Downtown Contest, El Cortez offers some of the best accommodations in downtown Las Vegas. In May 2009, the property opened the El Cortez Cabana Suites, a 64-room boutique hotel offering vintage South Beach style in the heart of downtown. The casino features full-pay 3-2 single deck blackjack, 10 times odds on craps, state-of-the-art roulette and more than 1,000 slot machines.

El Cortez also offers a full range of sports betting options and is proudly affiliated with the Station Casinos Sports Book. The Las Vegas Review-Journal voted El Cortez ”Best Downtown Hotel” in 2009; “Best Blackjack in Las Vegas” in 2007 and from 2009-2011; “Best Video Poker” in 2008 and “Best Keno in Las Vegas” from 2005-2006 and 2008-2011.  Dining options at El Cortez include: Café Cortez and The Flame Steakhouse, a vintage favorite among Las Vegas locals.  The property’s other amenities include: Subway, Dreyer’s Ice Cream Shop, Seattle’s Best Coffee, El Cortez Gift Shop and a full-service beauty and barber shop.  For more information, please call 1-800-634-6703 or 702-385-5200

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