Sunday, Aug. 7, 1966 | 5 a.m.
Top name personalities from across the nation flew into town this weekend to make the grand opening of one of the largest gambling resorts to be constructed on the Las Vegas Strip in 10 years--Caesars Palace.
The $25 million resort, headed by Nate Jacobson, an insurance executive from Baltimore, and some 70 stockholders, chartered planes and imported celebrities and gamblers for the opening.
Included on the guest list were: Teamster Union President James Hoffa, Nevada Governor Grant Sawyer and entertainers Rhonda Fleming, Ann Baxter, Adam West, David Jansen and Ed Sullivan.
The casino, lighted by the largest crystal chandelier in the world, was jammed with gamblers by mid-afternoon.
An executive of another Strip hotel said Caesars Palace had imported some of the biggest "high rollers" in the country for the opening.
Singer Andy Williams opened the dining room show with such favorites as "Who Can I Turn To," "Call Me," "Shadow of Your Smile and "What How My Love."
Williams joshed about the usual opening-day blues of confuseed reservations and the apparent lack of coordination in opening the hotel on schedule tht had Strip gamblers betting it would not come off on time. He sang a medley of Henry Mancini hits and then lured the composer-director on stage to conduct a few numbers.
Eight Roman soldiers heralded the opening curtain which was more than an hour late going up. A stage full of swinging Cleopatras gyrated to modern rhythm.
Some chorus girls wore see-through beaded costumes, but nudes were noticably absent from the production.
Gov. Sawyer welcomed guests before the opening curtain. He termed the multi-million dollar hotel one of the most spectacular displays he had seen. "This is quite a jump for Nate Jacobson from the insurance business," said the governor.
The sprawling hotel covers a 34-acre piece of desert worth $3 million.