Vegas' first ground-up casino since 2009, owned by Metro Detroiter, opening in October

Tony Paul
The Detroit News

Las Vegas is open again.

And soon enough — sooner than expected — Derek Stevens will be opening some more doors, to his first-ever built-from-the-ground-up casino, in the heart of downtown (or old) Vegas.

Stevens, the Metro Detroit native, Michigan alumnus and casino magnate, announced Wednesday that his new Circa Resort & Casino will go live Oct. 28, more than a month ahead of its originally scheduled December unveiling.

Derek Stevens' Circa Resort & Casino is scheduled to open in October.

Circa is located across famed Fremont Street from one of Steven's other Vegas properties, The D.

The early opening comes despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which has shut down or significantly hindered several industries across the country, including construction.

"Sometimes life throws you curveballs, and 2020 has been an unpredictable year for the entire world," Stevens said. "However, thanks to the creativity and ingenuity from our partners ... we can move forward on this accelerated path and have an opening unlike Las Vegas has experienced. We are excited to see what the future holds and to give visitors and locals something to celebrate."

Circa will be 1.25 million square feet, and will open its first five floors in October, as well as a high-tech, ride-share-centric parking garage (called Garage Mahal). Its hotel will have 777 (get it!) rooms. The casino also will feature what its touting as the world's largest sportsbook, set for three stories and stadium-style seating with a capacity for up to 1,000 — also serving as the hub for Stevens' new bookmaker venture, Circa Sports.

Its pool will be amphitheater style, and its food offerings will include a taste of Michigan, with Saginaw's Delicatessen (run by the founder of Zingerman's Deli in Ann Arbor).

Once completed, the resort plans to employ about 1,000 workers.

Circa Resort & Casino is the first built-from-the-ground-up casino in downtown Las Vegas since Sundance (now The D) in 1980. The last one on the famous Strip was Aria, which opened in 2009.

This is Stevens' third casino, joining The D — which stands for Detroit, Derek or Downtown, depending on who you believe (he's pretty coy about it) — and Golden Gate. All three are are located in downtown Las Vegas, which is about a mile north of the Strip.

Twitter: @tonypaul1984