You know the feeling of silent dread that creeps up your spine, tickling the back of your neck? How about the compulsion to suddenly do something with no rhyme or reason? Toss those sensations into a trick-or-treat bag, along with an intense need to have some fun….shake well, and that’s how I found myself checking into the eerie Hotel Apache for the first time in 2020.
Many of you may remember that Binions Casino once operated as a hotel, too. Its tower, topped by a digital thermometer and a rotating letter “B”, is a familiar landmark. Previously known as The Mint, it was the second-tallest building on Fremont Street until the Circa came along. Closed since 2009, Binion’s 366 rooms reportedly require expensive asbestos removal before they can ever be reopened to guests.
In a clever shifting of plans, owner TLC Casino Enterprises, which also operates 4 Queens Hotel Casino, decided to refurbish and open Hotel Apache, the long-hidden original structure above Binion’s Casino. Opened in 1932, those 81 rooms have remained unoccupied for 69 years.
“There are secret tunnels…escape routes. It is a hotbed for activity. Deaths, suicides, murder…you name it. It happened right up here. One of the most haunted locations in Nevada.” So claims Zak Bagans, owner of Zak Bagans: The Haunted Museum. Early last year, Bagans and the Ghost Adventures crew shot an episode at Hotel Apache, hoping to get a glimpse of the paranormal beings who reportedly occupy those rooms and corridors.
The full “Binion’s” episode of Ghost Adventures is available for you to watch on The Travel Channel. I won’t spoil anything here…but be sure to visit The Haunted Museum next time you’re in the Arts District. And be sure to say hello to John Shaw, who’s known to many through his appearances at LATE NIGHT MAGIC.
While nearby Golden Gate Hotel Casino has downplayed decades of paranormal activity claims, Binion’s wears its dark reputation like a ghostly white sheet:
Historic Haunted Hotel Apache at Binion’s
The Hotel Apache was originally opened by the Silvagni family in 1932. The family came to Las Vegas as a cement contractor for the Hoover Dam project and realized the workers needed a place to get away from their work and the heat of the desert. It was the first in Las Vegas to air-condition its hotel lobby and have air curtains at the entrance to the hotel.
The hotel was eventually acquired by Benny Binion and was the place to stay for many Hollywood movie stars like Clark Gable, Humphrey Bogart, and Lucille Ball. It was also the first in Las Vegas with an electrically operated elevator, a fully carpeted casino, and made poker a mainstream casino game.
If you’re set on communicating with the dead, you might have to wait until celebrity medium Thomas John returns with his Sin City production. But if you’re looking for a simple, clean, and convenient stay that won’t put a dent in your wallet, Hotel Apache is an honest-to-goodness trip back in time. Book early for the Halloween season, as they’re sure to sell out.
Hotel Apache is located at 128 E. Fremont Street Las Vegas, NV 8910. 800-937-6537 or 702-382-1600 or book your stay here.