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El Cortez Fun Facts

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The original 59 room El Cortez Hotel at 600 Fremont St in downtown Las Vegas, NV was built in Spanish Colonial Revival style by Marion Hicks, John Grayson, and J Kell Houssels at a cost of about $245,000. The grand opening of what was the first major resort in downtown Las Vegas, the El Cortez, was held on November 7, 1941. In March 1945, the El Cortez was sold to Moe Sedway and partners, for a reported $600,000. Sedway was an associate of Mob Accountant Meyer Lansky and Benjamin “Bugsy” Seigel. Houssels reacquired the resort in 1946. Jackie Gaughan bought the El Cortez in 1963 and owned it into 2008, when it was sold to Ike Gaming. The “El Co” has a reputation for providing good value for gamblers in downtown Las Vegas. The El Cortez Hotel and Casino was added to the National Register of Historic Places on February 13, 2013.

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