The Mirage Resort in Las Vegas is closing after 34 years

Once praised as “Las Vegas's first 21st century resort,” The Mirage Hotel & Casino confirmed Wednesday that the iconic volcano outside its main entrance will be dormant less than a quarter century into the new millennium.

Owner Hard Rock International announced the hotel will cease operations on July 17 and bookings will be accepted until July 14. The iconic resort – with a jungle fantasy theme – was perhaps best known for its exploding 60-foot man-made volcano, the magicians Siegfried and Roy, and its white tigers and dolphins.

“We would like to thank the Las Vegas community and team members for warmly welcoming Hard Rock after 34 years at The Mirage,” Jim Allen, chairman of Hard Rock International, said in a statement.

The resort is expected to be redeveloped into the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino and Guitar Hotel Las Vegas, with the volcano making way for a nearly 700-foot-tall guitar-shaped hotel. The opening of the project is expected in the spring of 2027. A similar 638 rooms hotel is located in Hollywood, Florida.

This is reported by the Associated Press that more than 3,000 employees will be fired. Hard Rock acknowledged it would pay about $80 million in severance benefits for union and non-union workers.

The Culinary and Bartenders Union employs approximately 1,700 Mirage employees. It announced Wednesday that its employees have two options.

The first was a severance payment of $2,000 for each year of service, plus six months of retirement and health benefits. The second option gives employees a lower, undisclosed amount, while retaining seniority rights for the duration of the property's closure, along with 36 months of recall rights for jobs at the new hotel.

“Members of the Culinary Union at The Mirage have a strong union contract that ensures employees are protected even as the property closes its doors completely for three years from July 2024 to May 2027,” said Ted Pappageorge, secretary-treasurer of the Culinary Union. in a statement Wednesday.

According to Hard Rock management, the new hotel is expected to employ nearly 7,000 workers, with 2,500 construction jobs expected during the rebuilding process.

Hard Rock said all reservations after July 14 would be canceled and guests should contact guest services or the booking agency for a refund.

The closure of the Mirage is the second on the strip this year.

In April, the 66-year-old Tropicana closed its doors to make way for a 30,000-seat stadium expected to serve as the home of the Oakland A's.

The opening of The Mirage by casino magnate Stephen A. Wynn in 1989 was hailed as the beginning of a new era of mega-resorts. It was the first strip hotel to open since the MGM Grand in 1973.

Wynn paid $600 million, the most expensive casino project at the time, for the sprawling 103-acre estate.

Its glittering 30-story white-and-gold towers would resemble neighboring Caesars Palace “compared to retirement.” Traffic occasionally backed up on the strip as engineers tested gas-fueled flames 40 feet into the air every few minutes.

“People just got out of the car and went to see what was going on,” a limousine driver said at the time.

The hotel had a 20,000 liter aquarium at the reception and 3,049 rooms.

The animals – and the habitat of the white tigers – brought fame and infamy to the resort, including in 2003 when a tiger seriously injured magician Roy Horn.

The opening of the Mirage kicked off construction and renovations of the resort, including the debut of Circus Circus' Excalibur in June 1990, the $250 million renovation of Caesars Palace and the opening of Treasure Island in 1994.

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