Gambling

Slots-A-Fun at Circus Circus is Bringing Value Back

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Just when we’d given up on Slots-A-Fun at Circus Circus, there’s a glimmer of hope. Not just for Circus Circus, but for all of Humanity.

Circus Circus recently moved all its coin-operated slot machines (the only remaining coin slots on The Strip) to Slots-A-Fun, an adjacent casino space where value is once again king.

Here’s what’s new at Slots-A-Fun, including a look at the $2 food deals harkening back to when Las Vegas had dirtier fingers, an abundance of cheap eats and table games minimums that didn’t require taking out a second mortgage.

If you aren’t aroused by this porte cochere, you are not Vegas enough.

Circus Circus gets a lot of guff, or as the kids call it, “shade.” It’s not new and shiny, and its family-friendly clientele makes the experience different than other casino-hotels. But that’s what makes it special, and wildly profitable.

Slots-A-Fun is adults only, just the way we like our Vegas.

The space is now full of coin-operated slots. The rarity of such machines, combined with a 97.4% payback on many machines, has made the coin slots area at Circus Circus a big draw for years. We wrote about the coin slot cult following awhile back.

Despite most slots using TITO (ticket-in, ticket-out) vouchers, modern slots still replicate the sound of coins dropping into the payout tray when players cash out.

Circus Circus clearly decided its long-neglected Slots-A-Fun needed a boost, and moving the coin machines to this area might just do the trick. The move was presumably also sparked by the opening of Fontainebleau across the street, but that’s unlikely to move the needle at Circus Circus.

Don’t freak out, coin fans.

Slots-A-Fun currently has 75 coin-operated machines, with another 25 on order. There are a dozen old-school video poker and keno machines, along with 39 machines that take TITO vouchers, but those will be phased out as new coin machines arrive. There are 12 video poker machines at the bar that don’t take coins.

Coin-operated slots were just one aspect of the Slots-A-Fun relaunch, however.

The Slots-A-Fun bar now offers several food and drink specials, at the price point of $2. We are not making this up.

Loss leaders are still alive in Vegas, you just need to know where to look.

Yes, we tried all the food, despite the fact we are not a shrimp person.

The shrimp cocktail presentation is actually clever, with the shrimp hovering over the sauce.

You get to choose the proportion of shrimp to sauce. Approved.

The shrimp seemed fresh and there were six.

Las Vegas used to be synonymous with inexpensive shrimp cocktails. Lately, it’s become synonymous with, “What is this fee supposed to be for?”

The popcorn was easily the best value, as the bag was nearly a foot long. Or tall. Depending upon one’s orientation.

Shrimp cocktail for scale.

The hot dog has the most room for improvement, but we weren’t drinking. The $2 dog would definitely handle one’s Vegas-feuled drunchies. We trust the preparation process is being refined. The lone bartender not only serves drinks at the bar, and acts as the service bartender for all of Slots-A-Fun, but also makes the food.

As hot dogs go, it’s a 4 out of 10. For $2, it’s a 4.5. Just nuke the dog and bun for 45 seconds, you’re good.

Here’s a look at Slots-A-Fun. This video may answer some of your questions, including, “Do you script the narration of your videos?”





As you might suspect, people are still rude and hogging machines.

We trust Slot-A-Fun will post the rules as it did when the coin machines were inside Circus Circus proper.

Coin slot machine rules
Common courtesy is on life support.

The fun at Slots-A-Fun doesn’t stop there, however.

Slots-A-Fun has table games again, including blackjack, roulette and an electronic craps table.

The craps table (real dice, but no chips, you bet through terminals) has a $10 minimum, uncommon for The Strip. Electronic craps tables aren’t exactly an authentic craps experience, but they have their benefits, beyond saving a casino money on labor.

Slots-A-Fun is nobody’s red-headed stepchild anymore!

Lots of longtime Vegas visitors have asked if Slots-A-Fun will bring back its craps table just inside the entrance, off the Las Vegas Strip. The answer is maybe. We trust increased demand and revenue will help drive that decision.

Sit at the bar for the fastest service and decent video poker.

What else would you like to know?

Parking for Slots-A-Fun? Yes, parking is still free at Circus Circus, but self-parking is quite far away. During our most recent visit, we tried the surface parking lot outside the Circus Circus porte cochere. The lot accepts payment via Parking.com, and it was $6 for two hours. From that lot, Slots-a-Fun is just a few feet away, totally worth it and a great deal compared to other paid parking rates on The Strip.

We just saved you a 15 minute trek.

You scan the thingy and pay online.

All the kids are doing it.

Will Slots-A-Fun keep its glorious carpeting? Yes.

It would be nigh impossible for us to love this carpet more. Also, thanks for giving us an excuse so use “nigh” in a sentence.

Are we going to point out the pip gaffe in the Slots-A-Fun carpeting? Yes.

The numbers 4 and 3 can’t be side-by-side, as opposing sides always add up to 7.

Are we going to point out that they got the other dice wrong, too? Yes.

Did we write a story about the dice pip problem? Yes.

Yes, we are that person.

We’ve been told Slots-A-Fun will have a DJ on Saturdays, so we know which day not to visit. Just a personal preference.

Overall, it’s awesome Circus Circus is reading the room and understands the desire for value is exploding with every price spike elsewhere on The Strip.

Circus Circus says in its news release, “With this strategic shift, Circus Circus reaffirms its dedication to honoring the essence of vintage Vegas while embracing innovation for the modern-day guest. The revitalized Slots-A-Fun area, alongside enticing promotional offerings, promises an unforgettable experience steeped in nostalgia and excitement.”

News releases gonna news release, but they aren’t wrong, and this direction is to be applauded and encouraged.

Off-Strip casinos have touted their throwback deals recently, including Downtown Grand (with their $2 hot dog and PBR deal) and Oyo ($1 blackjack), but the cost of doing business on The Strip is higher, so prices follow suit.

There’s nothing like a coin slot, in our humble opinion, for experiencing gambling the way Mother Nature intended. Two downtown casinos have coin slots (The Cal and El Cortez), but on The Strip, Circus Circus is the last casino standing.

This is why we can’t have nice things.

The reaction to Slots-A-Fun’s new direction has been universally positive online, and the casino says business levels have been strong since the relaunch of the space.

Circus Circus is one of our favorite casinos on The Strip, and now we have another reason to love the place. (Especially since there are no kids at Slots-A-Fun.)

If you want fine dining or elegance or a dress code, Slots-A-Fun isn’t the place for you. If you want to visit the Las Vegas you fell in love with, this is about as close as you’re likely to get without going downtown. Fact that’s anything but fun: Slots are now tighter downtown than on The Strip.

It’s time to get grimy again, and thanks for the memories, Circus Circus.



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