(Reno, NV KRNV TV)
From the Ask Joe file a question from a viewer about a new casino projects downtown.
Rik wrote in asking how Jeff Siri got a license to open a slots only casino in Reno ? He says he was under the impression there must be 200 hotel rooms to open a casino .
This is a complicated one, but I think I have the answer.
Jeff Siri, who owns the Club Cal-Neva, is hoping to open a slots-only casino inside the old Primadonna club across from Harrah's.
Nevada law does state you have to have at least 300 hotel rooms if you want to open a casino. But Siri says the property has a pre-existing gaming license which was granted before the law went into effect in 1994.
As long as the property isn't closed for more than two years, that license can be re-issued.
So here's the history of that property:
Siri lists "Jackpot City" as the previous licensee on his gaming license application. It was Jackpot City from 2009 to 2011. The property was also open as Club 241 before that, dating back to 2007.
Now before that, the casino was connected by a skywalk to the Golden Phoenix and before that the Flamingo Hilton.
It was also the Sahara Reno Hotel-Casino for a while and before that Primadonna from '56 - to '74.
So it's been open as different properties long enough that it is grandfathered in, and Siri is hoping to open the property for one day next month to keep that license valid. He then plans to re-open it for good after some remodeling. He is just waiting on gaming commission approval to make it happen.