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Virtual Museum

The Center for Gaming Research and UNLV Special Collections & Archives have put together several online exhibits, which are here gathered into an online "virtual museum." 

Constructed primarily from materials on file at UNLV Special Collections, these exhibits allow visitors to view unique documents and artifacts concerning gaming and gambling.

Note: there is no actual concrete and steel museum at Special Collections. Though the division does have a few display cases in its reception area, the vast, vast majority of the items and photographs on these pages are not on view to the general public.

Sarno Awards For Lifetime Achievement

Presented annually since 2003, the Sarno Award is the highest honor for the design and construction of casino resorts. This exhibit features entries for all of those honored with the Sarno Award.

Gaming Hall of Fame

The exhibit prepared for the 2007 Global Gaming Expo details the inductees into the American Gaming Association's Gaming Hall of Fame.

50 Years of Dining on the Las Vegas Strip

The exhibit prepared for the 2007 Global Gaming Expo details the inductees into the American Gaming Association's Gaming Hall of Fame.

A Centennial Celebration of Gaming in Las Vegas

The exhibit prepared for the 2005 Global Gaming Expo: 100 years of Las Vegas gambling!

Dino at the Sands

See Dean in action at the Sands in these Special Collections exclusive galleries.

Las Vegas Strip Neon Survey: Sunset to Sahara

The groundbreaking survey of Las Vegas Strip neon conducted by the Neon Museum in the summer of 2002. A must-see for casual and serious neon afficionados.

World Series of Poker: A Retrospective

The history of the world's most prestigious poker tournament and the casino that hosts it.  Currently, this exhibit is being updated, with more photos of the tournament and more information about past tournaments

Hotel El Rancho Vegas: The Strip's First Resort

Opened in 1941, this was truly the start of the Strip.  This exhibition is the most complete source of information on the resort on the internet, and the biggest collection of primary source materials on the El Rancho Vegas anywhere.

Paradise Misplaced: The Xanadu Hotel-Casino

Designed by Martin Stern, Jr., this casino would have redefined the Strip in 1975 but was never built. This was the first GSRC online exhibit, and has been recently overhauled.

Remembering Martin Stern, Jr.

News articles and photos about the career of this casino pioneer--a fitting tribute to an influential architect.

Dreaming the Skyline

This digital collection of nearly 2,000 drawings, sketches, and photographs captures the history of resort architecture in Las Vegas, Lake Tahoe, and Atlantic City, and its wider impact on the world. Highlighted are the works of two Las Vegas architects: Martin Stern and Homer Rissman.

Menus: The Art of Dining

This LSTA-grant funded digital collection brings together a wide assortment of menus selected from the Bohn-Bettoni Collection and the Las Vegas Menus Collection. The project contains over 1500 digitized items, including domestic and foreign menus from the 19th and 20th centuries. This project also includes menus from trains, airlines, ships, banquets, and other special events and holidays.