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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, January 17, 2010

Casino fortunes looking up


By Anthony Curtis

Ending one of the longest losing streaks Las Vegas has ever had, the year-over-year gambling win finally showed a gain in the most recent reporting month.

Nevada casinos overall registered a 4.4 percent uptick in November after 22 consecutive months of declines.The increase was 8.3 percent on the Las Vegas Strip.

The declines represented a reduction in win total, not losses for the casinos. However, the Las Vegas economy has, for the past 20 years, been predicated on yearly increases in revenue.

SHRIMP COCKTAIL: The other shoe has finally dropped on Las Vegas' best shrimp cocktail deal, at the Golden Gate. The Gate raised the former mainstay 99 — price to $1.99 last year, but offered the old price to customers with the casino's players-club card. That loophole has now been closed and everyone must pay $1.99. Is it still the best shrimp-cocktail deal in town? Yes, though the gap has been narrowed.

BUS FARES RISE: Single rides on and off the Strip have increased by 25 cents to $2, day passes by $1 to $5, and 30-day passes by $5 to $30.

SKYJUMP: The Stratosphere's lock on the Vegas thrill-ride market will tighten in April with the Skyjump's debut. The newest addition to the tower top will drop riders 855 feet at up to 40 mph, using patented "descender machine" and harnessed jumpsuit. The ride will cost $100.

Q: There's a new restaurant at the Plaza called Firefly. Is it the same as the good tapas restaurant on Paradise east of the Strip?

Yes same owners and menu. Firefly is a longtime locals favorite. Now, at its second location, you can take in the excellent view of the Fremont Street Experience from its glass-encased dining room.

Find out about Las Vegas shows, buffets and deals at www.LasVegasAdvisor.com.