Guests, nostalgic for the city’s heyday, can find traces of the early years at this, the second oldest hotel on the Las Vegas Strip. It’s been 70 years since Sahara made its debut on the North end of the Las Vegas Strip, cementing its place in history. Sahara first opened as a 240 room, two-story Moroccan themed hotel, dubbed “jewel of the desert.” Today, the fake camels and statues of Arabian guards are nowhere to be found, but Sahara hasn’t abandoned its African desert theme entirely. It’s on full display at the AZILO Ultra Pool, and hints of the original motif can be found throughout the resort.
Table of Contents
- The Resort
- Rooms & Suites
- Pools & Spa
- Frequently Asked Questions About Sahara Las Vegas
A former Rat Pack hangout and stomping ground of none other than Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin, Sahara Las Vegas has hosted hundreds of the most celebrated entertainers in the world. A-listers including Don Rickles, Jerry Lewis, Sammy Davis Jr., Liberace, Johnny Carson and Sonny and Cher performed at the legendary Congo Room. The Beatles stayed at the hotel in 1964 when they were performing at the Las Vegas Convention Center, 1.5 miles away. Sahara Las Vegas named a suite after the “Four Lads From Liverpool.” Elvis Presley sightings were common at the hotel and casino where Presley was dating showgirl Dottie Harmony. Sahara Las Vegas is featured in several films and TV shows, including the 1960 version of Ocean’s Eleven.
The hotel and casino opened in 1952 and changed ownership several times before closing due to financial problems in 2011. In 2013, the Sahara’s owner renovated the property and reopened it under the name SLS Las Vegas the following year. Only one year later, in 2014, the resort was sold and one of its towers was rebranded W Las Vegas, a part of the Starwood hotel chain. The property was sold once again in 2018 and the resort resumed its former SLS identity. On August 29, 2019 as part of a renovation, the SLS was renamed Sahara Las Vegas.
After an eight year absence, Sahara Las Vegas was back, and owner Alex Meruelo was all-in. He immediately began a multi year $150 million renovation project. Upgrades that have already been completed include remodeling the casino, hotel lobby, pool and spa. Guest rooms, suites and corridors were also included in the renovation. Several new restaurants and a sports bar have recently opened as part of the project at the boutique hotel.
Rooms & Suites
More than 1,600 rooms and suites are spread between three towers, each with a distinctive style. The Blanca tower has 196 standard blue and beige fully remodeled rooms. The rooms in the Marra Tower are fully remodeled, stylish and contemporary with a bold splash of color. The premium Alexandria Tower is the newest of the three, and has been recently upgraded. A 490-square-foot Alexandria Iconic king features romantic decor with a bench at the foot of the bed, a large TV and a dedicated work space. The Alexandria Tower offers a private valet entrance and dedicated hotel check-in.
Bazaar Meat By José Andrés
Award-winning chef José Andrés delights carnivores with his culinary masterpieces at Bazaar Meat By José Andrés. Indulge your taste buds at this hip, high priced steakhouse named “Best restaurant in Nevada.” Using only the best ingredients, Michelin-starred Chef José Andrés is creative with his menu, featuring crowd favorite cotton candy foie gras.
Uno Más Street Tacos + Spirits
Authentic street tacos made from scratch and margaritas should satisfy your craving for fresh Mexican food. Listen to the music of Latin America while you inhale the aroma of fresh corn tortillas and slow-roasted meats that fill the air. Voted “Best Margarita,” by the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Uno Más has vegetarian options available.
Looking for a quick, casual bite to eat on the go? Famous for its Focaccia pizza, this new Italian cafe serves coffee and freshly-made food including salads, sandwiches and gelato. Everything is prepared in house with the highest quality ingredients.
Everybody loves the breakfast spots in Las Vegas. Among the popular breakfast spots, Zeffer’s Café serves up classic Vegas comfort food like chicken & waffles, steak and eggs and shrimp’n grits. The casual dining spot is open for breakfast and lunch seven days a week.
Chickie & Pete’s Crabhouse and Sports Bar
Another new addition to the resort, Chickie’s & Pete’s has been voted ESPN’s top sports bar on the East Coast. Named one of Zagat’s “10 Hottest Fast-Food Chains” in 2013, Chickie & Pete’s is known for its bar food including, Crabfries, Lobster Pie and Philly Cheesesteak. The sports bar has more than 50 giant HD TVs and VIP pods for rent with oversized sofas, gaming consoles, TVs and more.
The Noodle Den
Famous for his hand pulled noodles, chef Guoming “Sam” Xin’s The Noodle Den opened at Sahara Las Vegas in December, 2021. Featuring traditional Northern Chinese dishes, the restaurant has a demonstration kitchen for guest viewing. The menu features homemade favorites including dumplings, beef brisket hand pulled noodle soup and sour port spare ribs.
Balla Italian Soul
Coming soon, the restaurant will feature a live-action kitchen and a pasta making window where diners can watch the chef whisk and knead the dough into tonight’s dinner. With an eclectic wine list, Balla Italian Soul features specialties that include Roman pizza, fresh seasonal vegetable dishes and fire-roasted meats and fish. The restaurant is scheduled to open by the end of summer, 2022.
Hotel guests line up early for a Venti morning coffee and a quick bite to eat at Sahara Las Vegas Starbucks among all the coffee spots in Las Vegas. The line tends to move quickly at this busy breakfast spot serving gourmet coffee, breakfast sandwiches, pastries and more.
Right off the casino floor, the 24-hour Casbar Lounge features happy hour twice daily, 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. to 9 p.m, and live music Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday evenings. The dazzling bar and lounge serves snacks and specialty drinks such as an Electric Feels with a blue Electricdust rim. A mix of peach flavored vodka, white cranberry juice, lemon juice, vanilla spice and sparkling wine, the key ingredient comes from natural Buzz Button Flowers. A flavor & sensation-enhancing dust, Electricdust creates a tingling sensation when it touches your tongue.
Located in the hotel lobby, this cozy bar and lounge is rated five out of five on Yelp, Google and Trip Advisor. The Tangier is a whiskey bar with a focus on anything aged. The selection of wine, beer and classic cocktails is also first-rate.
Pools & Spa
AZILO Ultra Pool
People read stories about the legendary Las Vegas pools available. The recently remodeled 35,000-square-foot pool area with a Moroccan theme features daybeds draped in canopies and palm trees.The poolscape features three pools and several jacuzzis. The renovation included a 240-foot-long by 40-foot-tall LED screen poolside for streaming concerts and live sporting events.
Alexandria Rooftop Pool
Enjoy breathtaking views of the mountains and downtown Las Vegas year round from the rooftop of the Alexandria Tower. Take a dip in the pool while a dee-jay spins tunes on weekends, or enjoy a tropical drink at the poolside bar. Cabanas, bungalows, day beds and lily pads are available to rent.
On the second floor of the Alexandria Tower, Amina Spa feels world’s away from the flurry of activity on the Las Vegas Strip. Amina Spa features herbal steam rooms, a relaxation lounge and a couples massage suite. Guests leave feeling relaxed and refreshed after treatments such as hot stone massages, body wraps and anti-aging facials.
AZILO Ultra Lounge
A new after-hours spot, AZILO Ultra Lounge by the pool features guest DJs, theme nights and live musical performances. One Saturday a month, professional dancers, circus acts and acrobats perform at AZILO Ultra Lounge. The entrance is in the casino’s Casbar Lounge, and admission is free.
Magic Mike Live
Based on hit films Magic Mike and Magic Mike XXL, Magic Mike Live stars 13 sexy, shirtless men performing on stage to the delight of the mostly female audience. Their exhilarating dance moves and acrobatic prowess are mesmerizing, but women come to Magic Mike Live to see men strip. There’s audience involvement, and some women are selected to be pulled up on stage during the performance.
Magic Mike Live is tame for an all male revue, with no full-frontal nudity. The screenplay for the original Magic Mike film was inspired by star Channing Tatum who once worked as a male stripper in Tampa, Florida. Magic Mike Live, the stage version, was conceived and directed by Tatum.
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Reckless In Vegas
Reckless in Vegas takes you back to the swinging sixties with original renditions of the music of the Rat Pack, Elvis Presley and more. The show also features modern versions of songs by artists such as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Frankie Valli and Johnny Cash. The three man rock band incorporates music, comedy, showgirls and video montages to remember our city’s glory days.
The Eddie Griffin Experience
Voted one of the 100 greatest stand-up comics of all time, Eddie Griffin returns to the stage at Sahara Las Vegas with “The Eddie Griffin Experience.” The popular comedian turned actor has appeared in movies and TV programs including Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, John Q and Scary Movie 3.
Standing out among the many amazing casinos in Vegas, the Sahara stands tall. The 60,000-square-foot casino floor includes more than 600 slot and video poker machines and 50 table games. The remodeled Sahara casino features upgraded lighting and new carpet along with a new slot and table game layout. A new high limit casino for table games, The Infinity Room, is a luxurious gaming parlor with a private bar and outstanding VIP service. William Hill Sportsbook at Sahara Las Vegas, inside Chickie’s & Pete’s sports bar, features an HD video wall to view sporting events and display betting odds.
Have you read our guide to mastering Poker? If so, you’re off to a great start. Off the main casino floor, a new seven table poker room at Sahara Las Vegas offers live cash games and weekly tournaments. To join the waiting list for a cash game or register for a tournament, visit Poker Atlas – Sahara Las Vegas. Players earn $2 in comps per hour playing at a live cash table while logged into Poker Atlas. Poker comps can be redeemed at any restaurant at Sahara Las Vegas. The poker room is open from noon to 4:00 a.m. daily, and maximum rake is $4 per hand.
Located near the lobby, this 24 hour gift shop sells toiletries, snacks and hotel souvenirs. Other merchandise includes logo tee shirts, tanks and hoodies, keepsakes and unique items including martini glasses.
Women’s fashion retail shop Sahara Hers sells high end shoes, clothes and accessories. The shop features sought-after labels including Miss Me and Joseph Ribkoff.
Meeting and Event Spaces
With more than 80,000-square-feet of meeting space, Sahara features a 9,000-square-foot ballroom and 30,000-square-feet of meeting and convention space. Sahara will make your event memorable with its one-of-a-kind venues. Choices include a theater that seats 1,800, a penthouse or a rooftop pool.
Sahara wants to make your wedding day special. Couples can get married poolside, in a courtyard or a luxurious banquet room. An event planner is available to work with the couple to plan their dream wedding.
The Future of Sahara Las Vegas
During an appearance on Nevada Newsmakers, the president of Sahara Las Vegas expressed extreme optimism about growth on the North Strip. Paul Hobson says he “sees positive signs all around him.” Those include the opening of Resorts World and the Fontainebleau Las Vegas’ projected opening in the last quarter of 2023.
Frequently Asked Questions About Sahara Las Vegas
What loyalty program is offered at Sahara Las Vegas?
With Infinity Rewards, members earn comps for playing slot machines, table games and poker.
Is there a monorail stop at Sahara Las Vegas?
Yes. The Las Vegas monorail has a stop at Sahara.
Is there a charge for parking at Sahara?
No. Parking is free at Sahara Las Vegas.