In light of the pending implosion of The Harmon, Vegas Inc. decided to list the Top 10 Vegas Strip Hotel implosions. I love implosions and figured this was a good excuse to visit the youtube archives.
For the next couple of weeks I’ll grab video of these 10 Las Vegas Strip Hotel implosions. We go to #4 on the list – The Hacienda.
Opened: June 1956
Imploded: Dec. 31, 1996
Built on 48 acres, the Hacienda had 10 buildings and started with 240 rooms. It was remodeled in 1975 and expanded in the early 1990s to 1,140 rooms to compete with booming megaresorts nearby. During its first couple of years the casino remained closed for lack of a gaming license.
Just two miles from McCarran International Airport, and for most of its years the first hotel on the highway from Southern California, it attracted an ample amount of tourists but remained somewhat solitary until the 1970s.
The Hacienda was known for family entertainment and featured miniature golf. Owner Warren “Doc” Bailey wanted to have something that kept children occupied while their parents gambled. In 1960, Bailey purchased eight small passenger airplanes for $2 million to provide customers with a package deal that would include airfare and hotel stay. In the 1970s and 1980s, tourist traffic grew for the Hacienda, due in large part to its location at the southern end of the Strip.
In its heyday, the Hacienda showroom launched Lance Burton‘s career and featured comedian Redd Foxx. Even with star attractions and a family-oriented environment, the Hacienda could not compete with the flashy resorts that grabbed tourist attention. The hotel was imploded on Dec. 31, 1996, to make way for Mandalay Bay.
The neon horse and rider from the old Hacienda sign now decorates the intersection of Fremont Street and Las Vegas Boulevard in downtown Las Vegas.