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Archive for October, 2007

Frontier Implosion Time and Date Announced

A hat tip to Paco. The announcement is only 5 minutes old!

Implosion of the Frontier Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas to Make Way for
Internationally Recognized Brand, The Plaza

Plaza RenderingDATE:                         
Tuesday, November 13, 2007

A longtime icon of the Las Vegas Strip, the Frontier Hotel & Casino will be imploded to mark the beginning of the new home of the internationally recognized brand, The Plaza.  Elad Group and IDB Group, a joint venture on The Plaza, will bring the elegance and luxuriousness of the brand to the Las Vegas gaming and hospitality market.  The multi-billion dollar project is set to open in late 2011.

Isaac Tshuva, Owner of ELAD Group; Nochi Dankner, Chairman of the Board and CEO of IDB Group; Miki Naftali, President & CEO of ELAD Group and Daniel Wade, Chief Operating Officer of ELAD IDB Las Vegas, LLC
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Implosion to take place promptly at 2:30 a.m. PST


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Historic Neighborhood Monuments Installed On St. Louis Avenue

The Southridge Neighborhood Association was founded by Jack LeVineWe want to thank the City of Las Vegas for our 2 latest historic neighborhood monument signs.

They’re the final finishing touches to the St. Louis Avenue Beautification project that we’ve reported on many times in the past.

The Beverly Green Neighborhood Association split off from Southridge in 2004I founded the  Southridge Neighborhood Association in 2001 as a response to the Stratosphere’s plan to build a giant scorpion tail shaped roller coaster down the side of their tower and across Las Vegas Boulevard right to the edge of my neighborhood. Originally, Southridge’s boundaries were from Sahara to Oakey and LVBS to Maryland Parkway. In 2004, we split in half, and created the Beverly Green Neighborhood Association from 6th Street and west to the Strip.

The City of Las Vegas has a whole Department called Neighborhood Services. It was just coincidence that las night’s Citizen Leadership Academy was hosted by Neighborhood Services. Neighborhood Services helps to start and support the associations in an effort to create safer, prettier and spirited neighborhoods. If you want to start one, or get involved with one, you can call 229–2330.

Clark County has a similar department with a similar program if you don’t live in the city. Their phone number is 455–3777 

From the article I linked to above, here’s a little piece of recent downtown history for you:






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Untold Stories – Classic Las Vegas Holds Discussion About Las Vegas And World War 2

The crowds keep getting bigger as the word spreads about this series which is presented by Classic Las Vegas. The next Installment is this Thursday November 1.

Untold Stories at the Las Vegas Preserve presents:

The Greatest Generation, Las Vegas and World War II

When the majority of us think of World War II we rarely think of Las Vegas.  Yet, it was here that Basic Magnesium supplied the valuable mineral to the War effort and the Las Vegas Gunnery School trained pilots for missions over the Pacific and European theaters.

The citizens of the small town of Las Vegas did their patriotic duty by growing Victory Gardens, participating in Rubber and Can Drives, rationing and sending their sons, brothers and husbands off to war.

The impact the War had on Las Vegas would help the small desert community grow into the Entertainment Capital of the World.

Learn more about this fascinating time in Las Vegas history this Thursday evening.  Join

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Waiting For The Fed – Will They Or Won’t They And What Will It Mean

Found a great article on the subject. It’s long, but not boring.

The Money Quote:

On this day before the Fed’s next interest rate announcement, analysts are pretty much split with about half expecting another cut and about half expecting the Fed to stand pat at least until the next policy meeting on December 11. My guess is that the Fed will cut again tomorrow, but perhaps by only a quarter point.

If the Fed cuts rates by more than a quarter point tomorrow, this will likely be a sign that the FOMC believes the housing slump and the subprime mortgage troubles are worse than we think. Likewise, if they do not cut rates tomorrow, it will be a sign that the Fed believes the subprime meltdown is under control.

Here’s the whole Article from Gary Halbert


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Worst MLS Photo Of The Day – Every Picture Tells A Story

Debbies boyfriend got drunk and broke the closet doors. Debbie was  happy to have easier access to her clothes.The question is…. Is it a story that should be told?

Every single picture from this listing ended up in one or another of my bad picture folders.

Here’s 3 from the “clutter” folder.



And if you’re going to tell the story, you might as well tell the whole story!

Debbie didn't really like the mirror tiles that the previous owner put up in 1975. She's bummed that they'll move before she finishes her cover up collageDebbie’s a very busy young lady. There’s no time in her life for opening and closing closets. She has 3 different boys sending her love notes during math class. Since she’s leading them all on, she hangs all their letters over her bed to help her remember who said what on any given day.

Debbie’s real mad at her folks for putting the house up for sale. She doesn’t want to move away from her friends or from the dream of being prom queen. But she did make the bed to get her mom off her back.

The agent had flashbacks to her own days as a cheerleader and serious flirt so she decided that this mess of a typical teenage girls room was going to be the major focal point of her marketing of the home.

All this room needs is some color. A splash of blue will really turn the buyers on.Mom really wants to sell the house. To set a good example for Debbie, she kinda cleaned up her own room.

Unfortunately, the agent showed up to take the pictures before she finished.

The only thing worse than a bad picture is NO PICTURE AT ALL!


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Sixth Annual Vegas Valley Book Festival Is This Weekend

Book fair opening reception announcementWe invite you to join us at the Opening Reception this Thursday 10/1 6–9 PM at the Downtown Cocktail Room.

Here’s The original press release and information on the various events.

Authors, poets, journalists, and artists will participate in the sixth annual Vegas Valley Book Festival, on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 2 and 3. The two day event, sponsored by the city of Las Vegas Office of Cultural Affairs and Nevada Humanities, includes a full schedule of readings, book signings, panel discussions, children’s programming, writing workshops, and spoken word performances, concluding with a closing keynote address by acclaimed author Sarah Vowell, sponsored by the Las Vegas Review Journal.

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20 Frequently Asked Questions From Las Vegas Code Enforcement

20 questionsI’ll be doing my ride along this week with a Las Vegas Code Enforcement Officer. This will be the last of my “extra credit” field trips as part of the Citizens Leadership Academy. In preparation, I found this  nifty little handout from the city. As far as I know, the rules in the county are almost identical. 20 Frequently Asked Questions From Code Enforcement The distressing thing, and the one thing that I’d change in a heartbeat is that the enforcement of our zoning codes is strictly a “complaint driven system”. If you have a neighbor that’s driving you crazy, you can anonymously start the city or county on the path of doing something about it.

In the city of Las Vegas call :229–6615 In Clark County call 455–4191 The same numbers are ALSO FOR REPORTING GRAFITTI!

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First Friday In The Downtown Las Vegas Arts District

UPDATE: Gary emailed this morning that he and the van are back in town for tomorrow’s FIRST FRIDAY. He ended up in Arizona for the last 2 months working on the “city scape”. He says:
Hey Jack… The Van will be at 3rd and Imperial by Cobalt Blue Gallery Fri Nov 2…. It has hundreds more buildings since you saw it… And many buildings will be lit internally.”
Make a point to stop by and see it. It’s really cool! 
From our old website 9/6/2007:

An Urban Landscape In Search Of A Workspace

 It just rolled into town. It’s almost complete. The artist, Gary needs a place to live and a driveway at the least. A garage, or drive in art studio would be even better. He’s willing to pay rent, but would love to get the living quarters and parking space donated. He only needs a couple of months to get it finished.

Someone out there has a bedroom and drive way, or bedroom and garage, or a studio apartment or a ???? If you don’t, maybe you know someone who does?
I have his email and cell phone number. Please contact me by phone or email if you know someone that might want to help.
We met at the Vurbspace gallery opening and reception this evening. This piece of rolling art stopped us all in our tracks.


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Worst MLS Photo Of The Day –

Modern Technology at its bestAgents have an affirmative obligation to market their listings to both other agents and to the general public. Pictures are one way to do that. Color pictures are even better! Camera Phones aren’t famous for taking good pictures. Taking pictures at a high resolution and large size helps a lot when you shrink them down. If you upload that’s tiny in the first place, and the computer tries it’s best to fit it into a predetermined space, it will look something like this.

All three from the same listing.


black and white tribute to favorite childhood memoriespleasantville memories before the world turned crazy and became all colorfulThe only thing worse than a bad picture is NO PICTURE AT ALL!




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Did You Miss The World’s Most Quirky Open House?

The VVV gang ( l to r)Uncle Jack, Pam, Mary, Dr. Lonnie, Paco and MaryMargaret from the Atomic Age AllianceI was certainly flattered by the number of VVV readers who sought me out to say hello while I was directing traffic on one of the very narrow staircases up to the 3rd floor rooftop level. I was real busy all day, and my feet still hurt, but it was an amazing experience not only for me, but for the approximately 7000 people who took advantage of this once a year event.




The line didn't shrink till almost 4pm. They just kept coming.






Below the fold are some more pictures we did manage to take during the event.

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Things Look Different After Dark – Our Residential Historic District At Night

PA193566I’ve probably driven by the front entrance to John S. Park Elementary a hundred times. I’ve even gone in thru these doors to vote. Yet somehow, I never noticed the stick figure student holding up the arched awning. I drove by last night and it was so obvious in the dark with the backlighting, that I just had to share it with you.

The school, and eventually the John S. Park Historic District were named after an early pioneer of Las Vegas who arrived in 1905. He organized and was president of Consolidated Power and Telephone. He lived on 7th Street. But I’m not sure which house. Does anyone else know?


There’s a walking tour of the John S. Park Historic District.

You should really do it twice. Once in the daylight and once in the dark. It’s a great trip down memory lane.

Coincidently (or not) I’ll take the opportunity to mention the 2 listings I have in the John S. Park Historic District. As much as I HATE to admit it, we’ve had to lower the price on both. They’re at 1249 8th place, which is one of the stops on the walking tour and 1273 9th Street.

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The Ottoman Mystery

PA293715We had a surprise delivery Saturday from the UPS man.  As Jack was MLS-ing away for a client, I jumped up & got the door.  It was a huge air compressor box shipped to Jack LeVine from Port Orange Florida.  The name was one neither of us recognized and after opening the box we find two beautiful vintage Ottomans.  

We scoured all of our databases to figure out who Len *last name omitted* was so we could figure out who to thank & why they sent this great gift with no note.  After having no luck in our various databases for two days, Jack resorted to calling the number listed for the person shipping them today.  She told Jack they were bought as a gift from his sister, Catherine.  Jack doesn’t have a sister named Catherine, and dug for more info as I was scratching my head trying to think of a close VeryVintageVegas friend or client named Catherine.  He was told the last name was ‘Christmas’, and I smacked my forehead remembering last week my sister had asked for my office address. (It’s hard to get any kind of UPS, Fed-EX or USPS package delivered @ L’Octaine, as it is such a secure Urban dwelling complex.)

It turns out this was an e-bay auction won and shipped from Florida as an apartment warming gift by my mother & sister!  They’ll match my low to the ground black circular chair, my round dinette set, and my low, round black stool perfectly! The middle section will also match the octagonal design of the beautiful vintage wall clock that Jack got me from Modify, as a house warming gift.    It turns out calling the E bay Seller was worth the dial for a few reasons.  We found out the Ottomans were vintage from the 60’s and came to Florida from Germany.  Either way, I’m ecstatic to have an aesthetic place to prop my feet up at the end of a long day helping Jack promote the Urban Core of Las Vegas, and helping our readers finance their Vintage Vegas home purchases!  While I was sad to see Jack’s disappointment that they weren’t for him (it was supposed to be addressed to Steve Christmas c/o Jack LeVine; I’m still overjoyed at the great vintage surprise!) Thanks mom & sis, you know me too well!

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What Do New Homes Have To Do With Vintage Vegas?

Nothing! And Everything at the same time. How could that be?

The National Association Of Home Builders says:

“Despite the present market contraction, Seiders said that housing should begin to turn around next year for a number of reasons: the overall economy and job growth continue to move ahead at a decent pace, core inflation is under control, the late-summer credit crunch in mortgage markets is showing signs of easing since the Federal Reserve cut short-term interest rates on September 18, and the supply-demand equation will be better balanced as builders begin to whittle down excess inventories.”

So there’s going to less of the same old same old everything looks like everything else out in the suburbs. But there’s hardly a single new home to be found in Vintage Vegas. Regardless of how I define “Vintage Vegas”….geographically, or by age of the homes, or by housing style, there’s only so much of Vintage Vegas.  And the demand for “close to the strip”, “charm and character”, “big lots with big trees”, “like the house I grew up in”, is catching on and growing.

One of the things that has always defined Las Vegas is timing. It was still a railroad camp when the big cities of the east coast and midwest already had huge populations. The median age of home in Las Vegas (by my calculation) is 1993. The medium home in Columbus, or St. Louis or Chicago, or Dallas is probably about 1960, which is when their population was half of what it is now. Every other major city in America has had a rebirth or regentrification of their urban core neighborhoods. Because Las Vegas is such a “new” city, by all big city standards, we’re the last city left where the rebirth of the urban core is still in in it’s adolescence.

As a volunteer tour guide today at Dr. Lonnie Hammargren’s Open House, I had a chance to speak to dozens of Las Vegas residents who had “absolutely no idea” that neighborhoods like Paradise Crest existed. All I could do was hand them a card and ask them to keep moving, as there was something like 7000 people that came to the open house.

There’s a couple of rules in life which just can’t be ignored. Gravity is one of them. Location is another. Even if we had nothing else to offer in Vintage Vegas….we do have location.


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Wally And The Beaver Moved Here In 1967

The whole VVV team spent the day in Paradise Crest as volunteers for the Hammargren Home of Nevada History Open House, Paradise Crest is one of the premier east side Vintage Vegas Neighborhoods.

We’ve been kind of heavy on the downtown redevelopment topic lately, so I thought I’d start up the Vintage Vegas Neighborhoods series that was running on our old site.

(From an August 10, 2007 post on our old site) All pictures are clickable to see full size.

Pc7Welcome to “Leave it to Beaver Land”. Actually it’s called Paradise Crest, and hands down, it’s the prettiest neighborhood in all of the east half of Vintage Vegas. All of the 170 homes were built between 1967 and 1971, in the WAY OUT FAR SUBURBS near Flamingo Rd and Pecos Rd.  We visited it on the History Hunt, and and it was everyone’s favorite. All the homes are custom built, on 12,000 to 23,000 foot lots. Pc3Most have pools, and terrific landscape. I only found 1 house, period, with a bad landscaping, some neglect, and it’s the one I used for the “how to screw up a dimensional roof” post, the other day. Pc5I’ll leave it to you decide which one it is.   




Pc2Paradise Crest is located south of Flamingo, between Sandhill and Pearl. Prices range from $45,000 to $950,000. Currently, there’s 11 properties for sale.





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I’m Already In Line To See This Movie!



CLOSING ESCROW is the story of three quirky families seeking to buy their next home. They’re all moving for different reasons—and none of them are getting along with their real estate agents. All three families converge on the same property which inevitably goes into multiple offers. Who gets the house?

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A hat tip to Jay Thompson, A Phoenix RE Blogger


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