NoeHill Travels in the American West: Nevada

National Register of Historic Places in Washoe County

National Register #84002081: Mapes Hotel and Casino in Reno Undated Photo
Courtesy Special Collections Department
Univrsity of Nevada
(Click Photo to Zoom)
National Register #84002081
Mapes Hotel and Casino
10 North Virginia Street

The Mapes Hotel and casino was built by the Mapes family in 1947. When this hotel opened, it was the first skyscraper built in the western United States after WWII. Most importantly, the Mapes was a model for all large scale hotel casinos to follow.

For decades, the Mapes was the place to stay in Reno. Its celebrity guest list included Marilyn Monroe, Clark Gable, Joseph McCarthy, Harry Truman, Frank Sinatra, Jimmy Durante and Milton Berle.

In the 1980s, the Mapes family encountered financial difficulties due to their investment in another casino, The Money Tree. With the competition of other high rise casinos popping up all over Reno, the hotel closed on December 17, 1982. The Mapes was placed on the National Register of Historic Places, however it was razed on January 30, 2000. The site is now a park and permanent ice skating rink.


Between the years 1985 and 2000, nine National Register properties in Nevada were lost to vandalism, neglect and renewal as reported by Sean Whaley in the Las Vegas Review-Journal dated 6 November 2000.

198? Reno Riverside Mill Company Flourmill demolished
1988 Las Vegas Las Vegas Hospital burned down
1991 Carson City Virginia and Truckee Railroad Shops knocked down by owner
1992 Winnemucca Nixon Opera House destroyed by arson
1992 Reno Odd Fellows Building demolished by the city to make way for a parking garage
1993 Tonopah J.E. Smith stone duplex knocked down
1994 Reno Reno Bell Telephone building demolished
2000 Reno Mapes Hotel imploded by city officials to make way for new development
2000 Las Vegas Whitehead House destroyed by a fire believed to have been set by vagrants
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