Benny Binion is famous in the history of Downtown Las Vegas after he opened the Horseshoe casino in 1951 a mainstay of Downtown which in more recent times was renamed Binion’s Horseshoe and is now just called Binion’s. The Horseshoe was famous for excepting any size bet in the casino and, Benny Binion was a key figure in the development of the World Series of Poker tournament; If that wasn’t enough Benny Binion also helped the popular National Finals Rodeo secure its home in Las Vegas. In 1984 a 15-foot-tall, 2,800-pound bronze statue of Benny Binion on horseback was placed by Binion’s parking structure at the corner of Casino Center Drive and Ogden in Downtown. Back in 2005 we wrote a brief article about the statue which was created by Deborah Copenhaver and is very cool although the location of the statue meant that not many people saw it except maybe Las Vegas bloggers or people in to Las Vegas history. In 2008 the statue was moved to a better more visible location at the South Point Hotel & Casino on the South end of the Strip. South Point owner Michael Gaughan bought the statue from the Binion family for $1 under a deal where he would make a better permanent home for the statue. If you want to check out the statue it’s located in the corridor outside the South Point Hotel & Casino’s Equestrian Center and is available twenty-four hours a day to check out for free.
The number of free attractions Las Vegas have been less over the last few years with things such as the ‘Sirens’ show at TI gone as well as the ‘Carnival in the Sky’ at the Rio. One free attraction that has been around for many years is the free display of ‘One Million Dollars’ at Binion’s in Downtown Las Vegas which is a display made of old bills from one to one hundred dollars under a clear pyramid design. You can also pose next to the money and receive a free 6×8 glossy photo inside a souvenir frame even though the younger generation may not know what a physical photo; is but you do need to be 21 to see the display and get the photo as it’s in the middle of the casino so sorry younger people. The display is near the Club Binions booth and is open from 9am to 11:30pm daily so if you are downtown its worth a quick visit and to receive the free photo. For more information you can call Binion’s toll free at (800) 937-6537 or local number (702) 382-1600. (Article courtesy of LV Downtown Now)
If you want to get from Downtown on Fremont Street to the Strip or vice versa, you could take a cab which is quick but a little expensive; Another option would be the Deuce the double decker that stops frequently as it travels the Strip another option would Strip and Downtown Express the tram like bus which has fewer stops but still travels the busy Strip. The option I use if I want to get quickly from the MGM Grand area of the Strip to Downtown and Fremont Street quickly is the Westcliff Airport Express; The Westcliff Airport Express is yes an express bus that runs to the Mc Carren Airport but it also has a stop near Hooters and the Tropicana near the Strip across from the MGM. The buses run from about 5am to 10pm every 30 minutes and, has a few stops Downtown but after that it takes the freeway past the Strip before exiting at Tropicana so it makes it a quick trip without numerous stops and traffic on the Strip. If you are at the Downtown end and want to head to the MGM area of the Strip the bus stop the side of Binion’s is the easiest place to catch it.
So what do you when you wake up at 4am in your hotel bed in Downtown Las Vegas and are hungry there are a few good options to eat pancakes at Du Pars at the Golden Gate, specials at Magnolia Cafe at Four Queens or even breakfast at Benny’s Bullpen at Binions. The solution as i am staying in the Fremont is an elevator ride to the casino for a steak and egg bagel sandwich with a large coffee at Dunkin Donuts which filled the need. The Dunkin Donut location at the Fremont is open twenty four hours a day if you want to check it out and now im thinking about pancakes at Du Pars can you have breakfast for two meals a day, i think i may have too.
A longtime Downtown favorite for inexpensive food and good specials, Binion’s Café has reopened after an extensive remodel. We were a big fan of the former café but one drawback was often we had to wait for a seat to become available but the remodel does include more seating which is a big plus. The café is open twenty four hours a day just off the casino and has brought back Binion’s Famous Burger as well as adding new items such as pizza and prime rib. The new Binion’s Café should be as busy as before and if you need a quick fairly inexpensive meal you might want to check out the new remodeled café.
The folk at Binion’s who also own the Four Queens have been on somewhat of a building spree of late including the recent open of the remodeled Binion’s Café. Construction has now begun on another bar with seating outside under the Fremont Street Experience canopy just like the Whiskey Licker in the picture above. The new bar is to be called Cowgirl Up Cantina and is being built near the other corner on Fremont Street where sexy blackjack was being dealt (hopefully they keep those tables somewhere because nothing better than getting dealt blackjack by a girl in a Stetson}. The bars under the canopy started as temporary bars that the casinos would wheel out at night and, over the last few years have been replaced with permanent bars with outdoor seating that have become very popular during the nightly concerts and Fremont Street Experience canopy shows.