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The Good Life

Betting Big on Vegas

As Las Vegas adjusts to Covid-19 restrictions, Derek Stevens is betting $1 billion on a luxurious new casino
By Michael Kaplan | From America’s Most Notorious Mobsters, November/December 2020
Betting Big on Vegas
Photo/Getty Images
At the new Circa, “Vegas Vickie’s” Lounge features the neon sign that once adorned Fremont Street.
Derek Stevens may be the most optimistic man in Las Vegas. With the world in a pandemic, Nevada casinos mandated to operate at half capacity, profits predicted to drop by as much as 60 percent this year and mayhem rising (brawls have been reported in Vegas casinos and young tourists have taken to zipping along the Strip on rented Rascals that are usually driven ploddingly by the elderly, the infirm and Doyle Brunson), Stevens is launching a billion-dollar casino in downtown Las Vegas. By the time you read this, he will have opened the doors on Circa Resort & Casino.  While upcoming places such as Virgin Hotels Las Vegas (on the site of the old Hard Rock) and …
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