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November 21, 2014

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Gambling returns to old Moulin Rouge — for a day

Image

Steve Marcus

Babara Deveaux, her son Ebon, and Tanya Washington, right, look over the Moulin Rouge on February 14, 1999.

Moulin Rouge Casino 4 A Day

Cale Guthmiller of Boise, Idaho displays his money after cashing out at a temporary casino on the site of the historic Moulin Rouge casino on Bonanza Road Tuesday, June 19, 2012. Guthmiller actually came out even - he started with $10. The casino, the first integrated casino in Las Vegas, opened in May 1955 but closed in October of the same year. The temporary casino is held on the site every two years to preserve the gaming license to the property. Launch slideshow »

Moulin Rouge - a look back

The Moulin Rouge casino in the 1950's. Launch slideshow »

The historic Moulin Rouge casino is reopening — kind of, for eight hours anyway, and in a trailer.

One day next month, a trailer with 16 slot machines will be rolled onto the site of the mostly demolished Moulin Rouge, allowing the owner to preserve the gaming land-use rights of the property.

The state requires that a casino operate on the site at least eight hours every two years to maintain those rights. So that’s what will happen from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 11 at the site, 840 Bonanza Road.

The Moulin Rouge, built in 1955, was the first integrated hotel-casino in the United States. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992, five years before it closed in 1997.

The building was destroyed in a pair of fires, one in 2003 and the other in 2009.

County records show the property was purchased in 2009 by Olympic Coast Investment for $5 million. It was built in 1955 for $3.5 million.

It’s not the first time a downtown property has carted in slot machines to maintain its right to a gaming license.

The Gold Spike was purchased last year by Downtown Project, which eliminated gaming at the property, but later brought in slot machines to maintain the former hotel-casino’s gaming rights.

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