weather icon Clear

Las Vegas Strip eerily quiet in face of coronavirus— PHOTOS

Updated March 12, 2020 - 4:57 pm

The coronavirus scare has left its mark on Las Vegas Strip, creating an eerie quiet in a city that is known for large crowds and parties.

Our photography team has spent the day walking the Strip and through McCarran International Airport to capture the mood of the impact of coronavirus.

Casinos have fewer people at the slot machines and sportsbooks. Two college basketball tournaments have been canceled, as well as multiple conventions.

Electric Daisy Carnival still on

The Electric Daisy Carnival is still on despite coronavirus concerns postponing other music events according to an Instagram post from Pasquale Rotella, head of Insomniac productions, which puts on the three-day dance music festival. After announcing that Insomniac will have to postpone until June its Beyond Wonderland SoCal show, which was set for San Bernardino next week, Rotella said that EDC was moving forward as planned.

“I am in communication with local government officials who are ready for the show,” he wrote, “and we have new health and safety protocols to implement at this year’s EDC that we will announce closer to the date.”

— Jason Bracelin

Slow traffic at Mirage restaurants

Traffic at The Mirage restaurants was slow mid-afternoon on Thursday, including the buffet, where not a single diner could be seen from outside. A few customers were eating in California Pizza Kitchen, Diablo’s Cantina and the cafe. About five tables were occupied at Rhumbar’s outdoor patio overlooking the volcano.

— Al Mancini

Crowds favor Caesars Palace

Shoppers were sparse at The Forum Shops at Caesars around 3 p.m., and Carmine’s, Trevi and Water Grill had few customers, though it was between lunch and dinner hours. The Palm and Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab appeared to have the largest group of diners of the restaurants visited. A manager at Joe’s said that despite some cancellations by large parties, there had been virtually no drop in business on Wednesday and Thursday.

Caesars Palace was the busiest resorts one reporter visited all day, with activity on the casino floor and in its restaurants — even in off-hours. Celebrity-owned venues were the most crowded, with Gordon Ramsay Pub and Gordon Ramsay Hell’s Kitchen more than half full, and about 40 guests were at Vanderpump Cocktail Garden. Fifty or more guests were dining in the food court at Caesars and the buffet was busy with early dinner guests at 4 p.m.

—Al Mancini

Slower than usual at Fashion Show mall

The Fashion Show mall was relatively quiet around 1:45 p.m., with one cashier reporting that things were slower than usual for a Thursday. Nonetheless, there were still shoppers of all ages, including a pair of young women in the LEGO store wearing face masks. The Apple Store was among the busiest shops, but even there it was just a 15- to 20-minte wait to have someone look at a malfunctioning phone. On the flip side, the entrance to the well-publicized Banksy exhibit was nearly deserted.

— Al Mancini

Circus Circus has packed parking but few customers

Circus Circus appeared busy from the outside, but that’s apparently because its parking structures are being used as paid event parking for the ConExpo-Con/Ag attendees next door. Inside, the casino was very quiet, with about three quarters of the gaming tables empty.

The Midway, Adventure Dome and shops are all open, but quiet. About half a dozen guests were spread out on the bleachers awaiting the next Midway performance, which was about half an hour away. None of the restaurants seemed particularly busy and the buffet traffic was slow.

— Al Mancini

Customers line up at Gold & Silver Pawn, where the TV show "Pawn Stars" is filmed, in downtown ...
Customers line up at Gold & Silver Pawn, where the TV show "Pawn Stars" is filmed, in downtown Las Vegas, Thursday, March 12, 2020. (Christopher Lawrence/Las Vegas Review-Journal)

‘Pawn Stars’ store still draws a crowd

Gold & Silver Pawn on Las Vegas Boulevard downtown was packed at 1:20 p.m., with a line of patrons waiting to get in.

— Christopher Lawrence

A few diners, ticket buyers at The Strat

The casino floor at The Strat was fairly quiet around noon, with a handful of gamblers scatted among the tables and machines. The most crowded restaurant was the resort’s Cafe, which was about half full with guests eating lunch. There was a small line at the box office, where tickets for thrill rides and shows are sold.

— Al Mancini

‘We not concerned’

At the Tropicana, which was quiet Thursday afternoon, Jo Tweed of Australia said her group of four hadn’t considered canceling their trip.

“I work in the health industry and I know it’s like any other virus,” she said, “We’re not concerned.”

Bars and some restaurants were open but business was slow.

— Heidi Knapp Rinella

Quiet at the MGM Grand buffet

At MGM Grand, as 1 p.m. approached, not a soul was in line at the buffet; as we waited, a lone man walked up. The Avenue Cafe was about 30 percent filled, as was Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill, Emeril’s New Orleans Seafood and even the food court.

— Heidi Knapp Rinella

Sparse lunch crowd downtown

There wasn’t much of a lunch crowd in downtown Las Vegas on Thursday. Several restaurants and bars had few to up to a dozen patrons, and foot traffic along Fremont Street, particularly east of the canopy, was sparse.

By about 1 p.m., there were perhaps 100 people strolling under the canopy and no crush of pedestrians waiting for the “walk” signal to cross Las Vegas Boulevard.

At Downtown Container Park, up to about 30 patrons were were dining at tables, while about 20 others were strolling, including an employee wiping down tables and handrails.

— Christopher Lawrence

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Local Videos
Motorcyclist killed in crash in southwest Las Vegas - Video
Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Travis Smaka confirmed a motorcyclist was killed in a crash with another vehicle at Durango Drive and the 215 Beltway just before 9 a.m., Monday, May 25, 2020. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas man runs 100-mile marathon for veterans on Memorial Day - Video
Pete Madredes ran a 100-mile marathon at Exploration Peak Park in Las Vegas to raise money for Mission 22, a nonprofit that supports veterans with mental illness. He started Sunday morning, May 24, and ended Memorial Day morning. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Working at home with kids
Educators Jessica Houchins and Christopher Houchins discuss their work life merged with their parenting life during quarantine, at their home in Henderson on Thursday, May 14, 2020. (Elizabeth Page Brumley/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
6.5 earthquake in western Nevada - Video
A 6.5-magnitude earthquake damaged U.S. Highway 95, which was closed west of Tonopah near Coaldale, on Friday, May 15, 2020. (Nye County Sheriff's Department)
Southern Nevada Health District discusses contact tracing
Devin Raman, senior disease investigator at SNHD, explains how contact tracing works, noting how local clusters of disease are tracked.
Cowabunga Bay Prepares For Patrons
The management and staff at Cowabunga Bay in hopes of opening soon are implementing coronavirus safety measures to ensure patrons are happy and safe.
Pickleball courts coming to Sunset Park - Video
Clark County officials broke ground Tuesday on a championship pickleball tournament complex at Sunset Park, expected to open by next spring. (Clark County)
Great-grandmother meets great-granddaughter through window
A global pandemic couldn't keep June Watkins from meeting her 1-month-old great-granddaughter, even if it had to be through a window. Christie Jensen, the baby's mother, brought together four generations of women with her mother, DeeDee Jensen, when they brought the baby to meet Watkins for the first time ahead of Mother's Day on Sunday.
Firefighters deliver free pizza to coronavirus testers - VIDEO
The Professional Firefighters of Nevada delivered free pizza and soft drinks to Nevada National Guard members and health care workers who are performing COVID-19 testing at the UNLV School of Medicine. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas police investigate fatal crash - VIDEO
One person died at University Medical Center after a two-vehicle crash at West Russell and South Fort Apache roads, Thursday morning, May 7. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Southern Nevada Health District COVID-19 update
Southern Nevada Health District staff conduct a video briefing to provide updates about the public health agency’s COVID-19 response in Clark County.
Greg Zanis, the cross maker, has died - VIDEO
Greg Zanis was the Illinois carpenter who built and erected the 58 simple white crosses in the shadow of the “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” sign that turned into a focal point for a city’s grief after the Route 91 Harvest festival shooting in 2017. He died on Monday, May 4, 2020. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Seniors, people with disabilities getting special shopping hour at Costco - VIDEO
Costco will implement new rules Monday that, in addition to requiring face masks, will allow seniors 60 and older to shop from 9-10 a.m. weekdays. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Henderson Coalition for Responsible Government protest
Henderson Coalition for Responsible Government protest. (Julie Wootton-Greener/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Desert Oasis students celebrate senior prom with parade - VIDEO
Desert Oasis High School’s senior prom was supposed to be held Saturday, but it was canceled when schools statewide were closed due to the COVID-19 outbreak. (James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Henderson winery reacts to Sisolak's economic plan - VIDEO
Governor Sisolak's reopening plan is easier said than done for the only winery in Clark County. Grape Expectations is trying to figure out how to open up shop when they are three businesses in one. (James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Locals rush to reopened tennis courts
Daniel Nunez and Sarah Germain made immediate plans to go to their local tennis court, Darling Tennis Center, when they received an email that the facility would open on May 1.
Allegiant Air employees deliver snacks and drinks to food pantry - VIDEO
Allegiant Air donated food items to the Vegas Community Pantry in Las Vegas. The snack and drinks are commissary items that Allegiant planned to serve to passengers who were flying to Las Vegas for March Madness. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Health care workers protest over unsafe working conditions - VIDEO
Healthcare workers from Service Employees International Union (SEIU) gather at Southern Hills Hospital to protest unsafe working conditions at Las Vegas HCA-affiliated hospitals and demand that OSHA intervene. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
You had questions, and we've got the answers! Renee Summerour sits down with Dr. Brian Labus, epidemiologist with the UNLV School of Public Health and member of the governor's medical advisory team, and RJ health reporter Mary Hynes to answer viewer questions regarding the coronavirus spread in Nevada. (Renee Summerour/Las Vegas Review-Journal) THIS WEEK WE COVERED A LOT OF TOPICS: 1. POSTPONED MEDICAL/DENTAL PROCEDURES 2. GOV. SISOLASK ANNOUNCES TO EXTEND STAY-AT-HOME ORDER 3. THIS THE STAY AT HOME ORDER PART OF THE "ROAD TO RECOVERY PLAN"? 4. WILL THERE BE A MASK REQUIREMENT STATEWIDE? 5. DOES WEATHER PLAN A ROLE IN THE SPREAD OF COVID-19? 6. WHERE IS NEVADA THIS WEEK ON ANTIBODY TESTING? 7. MYTH: AIR CONDITIONER CAN CAUSE CORONAVIRUS 8. IS IT SAFE TO GO BACK OUTSIDE? BEACHES? HIKING? ETC?
Fire at strip mall in east Las Vegas - VIDEO
Firefighters battle a blaze at Nellis Plaza at 1000 N. Nellis Blvd. in east Las Vegas, Wednesday, April 29, 2020. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas City Hall marks Israeli Independence Day - VIDEO
Las Vegas City Hall’s lights turned blue and white Tuesday night to mark Israel’s 72nd Independence Day. (James Schaeffer / Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Lines move quickly through CCSD food distribution sites - VIDEO
Individuals pick up packaged meals from Clark County School District food distribution sites on Tuesday morning, April 28, 2020: Basic Academy of International Studies in Henderson and Kelly Elementary School in Las Vegas. (Elizabeth Brumley/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Mobile dance party to spread encouragement during coronavirus pandemic - VIDEO
The Clark County Parks and Recreation Department outfitted a van with speakers and a DJ to to blast music through local neighborhoods for a socially distant dance party and passed out kits with school supplies, books and hygiene items. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Marriage License Bureau reopens after coronavirus closure - VIDEO
The Clark County Marriage License Bureau at the Regional Justice Center in downtown Las Vegas reopens Monday, April 24, 2020. The bureau closed March 17 amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Sunrise Hospital releases man who recovered from coronavirus - VIDEO
Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center celebrated a milestone on Saturday, April 25 — the discharge to date of more than 50 COVID-19 patients. Employees marked the occasion by clapping and cheering as patient David Reifer was pushed down a hallway and out of the Las Vegas hospital in a wheelchair. (Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center)
Protest promotes recall of Gov. Steve Sisolak - VIDEO
A group known as Fight for Nevada and its supporters gathered outside of the Grant Sawyer State Office Building to protest and promote the recall of Gov. Steve Sisolak. (Erik Verduzco/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pair Create Nevada Light Display
David and Mason Koch designed and erected a solar light display atop Black Mountain of a Nevada outline with heart inside for community strength during the novel coronavirus pandemic. (L.E. Baskow/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Neighborhood rallies behind grad amid the coronavirus lockdown
Riley Lynn Thacker's mom put a sign in their yard to congratulate her daughter completing her senior year and neighbors followed suit. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas police are investigating a homicide
Las Vegas police are investigating a homicide after a man was found deceased in the parking lot of a strip mall at 9640 W. Tropicana Ave. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Homicide briefing
Las Vegas police investigate a homicide in southwest Las Vegas. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas police investigate homicide
Las Vegas police investigate a homicide in southwest Las Vegas. (Glenn Puit/Las Vegas Review-Journal)