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Carson Nugget nears end of makeover

Anne Knowles
aknowles@nnbw.biz

At the Carson Nugget, slow but steady wins the race to renovate.

The Carson City landmark’s hotel and casino has been undergoing a gradual makeover, starting in 2009 with, among other things, a remodel of its former oyster bar into Le Nougat, a coffee house and gift shop.

“We started doing little things,” says Star Anderson, general manager at the 30,000-square-foot casino. “We changed all the incandescent bulbs and put in LEDs to save money and energy.”

The casino also laid new carpeting, replaced part of the ceiling and added an all-you-can-eat salad bar at the Garden Café, installed new railings at the Steakhouse and put in new art with more a Nevada flavor, says Anderson.

“We did it all with cash flow.”
Star Anderson

The renovations, costing between $2 million and $3 million, says Anderson, should be finished by the end of next year.

So why the prolonged five-year schedule?

“We did it all with cash flow,” says Anderson. “No debt.”

The project includes a completed rehab of the rooms at the City Center Hotel, the Nugget’s 80-room facility a block away and across Carson Street, with new carpeting, wallpaper and bathroom fixtures.

Also nearly finished is an overhaul of the casino’s well-used banquet rooms, ballroom and foyer, including new carpeting, window treatments and leather couches.

A new mural was painted in the upstairs banquet area featuring a portrait of Kit Carson, the V&T engine, capitol buildings and the Carson Mint.

Last week winners were announced in the contest to decorate the wall opposite the mural with photos depicting the Nugget over the years. The wall now features pictures of a mid-1960s Nevada Day parade, steam engine No. 25 and a 50-year-old Polaroid of the Nugget.

Anderson says the remaining renovation is finishing the banquet rooms and update in the employee area.

“It’s a work in progress,” she says.