Sultan's Table, The Dunes Hotel, Las Vegas 1980s
The Dunes, which opened on a prime position on the Strip in Las Vegas in 1955 and was partly financed by Mob and Teamsters money, had an Arabian Nights theme. A towering fiberglass Sultan, with a flowing blue cape, was placed on the roof at the entrance of the resort and casino to welcome guests. The Sultan’s turban was fitted with a diamond – actually a diamond-cut car headlight – that glittered at night alongside the neon Dunes signs.
Inside the 200-room resort, public areas had sloping walls to resemble tents in the desert and the magnificent Arabian Room had a state-of the-art theater with facilities to match any on Broadway at the time.
The club featured nightly Magic Carpet revues, featuring a cast of 50 including 30 showgirls and dancers.
This menu cover in vibrant colors, showing birds flying over the minarets of The Dunes was from The Sultan’s Table dining room. Opened in 1961, Diner’s Club hailed it as ‘America’s finest and most beautiful new restaurant’ and it was generally acknowledged as the first gourmet dining destination on The Strip.
Designed as a tribute to the famous Villa Fontana in Mexico City, violinists strolled around the room as people ate.
As the decades passed, The Dunes was overtaken in popularity by other new resorts and businessman Steve Wynn bought the property in 1992, imploded the hotel and began construction of the $1.6 billion Bellagio.
The giant Sultan statue had been relocated to the hotel’s golf course in the 1960s where it served as a highway sign along the I-15. The flamboyant Sheik was destroyed by fire in the 1980s.
Courtesy Private Collection.
Each print is accompanied by a copy of the interior menu or cover.