Exploring East Off-Strip Las Vegas during August 2023

Mohegan Sun blackjack tableMohegan Sun's blackjack table experience

During my visit to Las Vegas on August 14, 2023, I had the opportunity to explore four casinos located just east of the famous Strip. To kick off my gambling adventure, I decided to start at Ellis Island, a renowned establishment known for its vibrant atmosphere and array of gaming options. After spending a considerable amount of time testing my luck and enjoying the lively ambiance, I made my way to Tuscany, another notable casino in the vicinity. With its luxurious decor and top-notch amenities, Tuscany provided a truly immersive gambling experience. Eager to continue my exploration, I then ventured to Mohegan Casino, where I was greeted by a vast selection of slot machines, poker tables, and other exciting games. The friendly staff and captivating entertainment options at Mohegan Casino made it a must-visit destination for any avid gambler. Finally, I wrapped up my casino tour by visiting Silver Sevens, a hidden gem that offers a perfect balance of elegance and relaxation. As I concluded my day of casino hopping, I couldn't help but appreciate the diverse offerings and unique experiences each establishment had to offer.

Following that, our next destination was Boulder Highway, which will be discussed further in the subsequent article.

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Ellis Island

Ellis Island stands as a petite casino located on Koval Lane, situated a short distance south of Flamingo Road. The development in this vicinity was an absolute nightmare. It occupies a spot along the thrilling Formula 1 circuit.

Ellis Island was bustling on a Monday afternoon, providing an exceptional value for table games in the vibrant city of Las Vegas.

During my last visit, I couldn't help but notice the exciting options available for gambling enthusiasts. Craps, for instance, offered a minimum bet of $5, providing a thrilling experience for players. To add to the excitement, the game allowed for maximum odds of 10 times the bet, enhancing the potential for big wins. Moving on to blackjack, I spotted a single table offering a $5 minimum bet with a favorable 3/2 payout. Utilizing a continuous shuffling machine, this table ensured a fair and continuous flow of cards. Additionally, there were numerous six-deck blackjack tables available, with minimum bets of $10 and $15, both offering the enticing 3/2 payout. These decks were dealt out of a shoe, creating an authentic and immersive blackjack experience. And, not to be missed, the double-deck blackjack game, which had made a comeback since my previous visit, offered a $25 minimum bet. Finally, for those who enjoy the thrill of roulette, the double zero version beckoned with a reasonable $10 minimum bet, promising hours of excitement.

The activity at Ellis Island seems to be thriving, particularly in their table games. During our recent visit, we noticed a new addition to the gaming floor - a third craps table has been included in their pit.

When it comes to gaming options at Ellis Island, the tables are where you'll find the best bang for your buck. However, video poker enthusiasts might not be as thrilled. To enjoy the highest payout percentages, you'll need to play the $1 denomination machines, which offer games like 9/6 Double Double Bonus and 9/7 Double Bonus, both with a 99% return. If you're willing to up your bet to $2, you can access the 99.4% version of Ace$ Poker. But if you're after the coveted 8/5 Bonus Poker, you'll have to play at the $5 denomination level. It's worth noting that both the $1 and $2 machines award a generous 30 credits for all quad hands.

Before playing, it is crucial to check out the paytables at the bar. The casino floor typically has the same paytables as the bar games, but there may be a few downgrades. The majority of quarter and half-dollar pay tables fall below 97%, although there are a few machines that offer 7/5 Bonus Poker, which has a 98% payout percentage.

In the heart of Las Vegas, tucked away within Ellis Island, lies a hidden gem for casino enthusiasts. Here, amidst the bustling crowds and neon lights, stands a solitary roulette machine - a relic of days gone by. Its allure lies not only in its vintage charm, but in its proper pay table, a rarity in today's modern gaming landscape. As you wander through the maze of table games, you'll find this elusive machine stationed near the entrance to the Village Pub, beckoning you to try your luck. Whether you're a high roller or a casual player, the denominations of $1, $2, and $5 cater to every level of risk appetite. So come, step into the time capsule of gambling history, and take a spin on the last of its kind at Ellis Island.


This afternoon, Tuscany exuded a sense of tranquility. We recently shared on our Twitter account the news that the casino is determined to reintroduce table games. Their online advertisements are focused on hiring dealers and table game supervisors. Early this year, the pit area underwent renovation and was subsequently replaced by stadium gaming and other electronic table games.

In the world of electronic table games, it's common to find a minimum bet requirement of $1. However, if you're into roulette, you might be interested to know that the 00 variant offers a slightly lower minimum of $0.25. Now, let's talk about craps. In some versions of the game, like the heads-up version, you can score big with a field twelve bet, where the payout is triple. But here's the catch – this exciting payout doesn't apply to the stadium version of craps.

Tuscany's video poker offerings for locals fall short compared to others, with below average options like 9/7 Double Bonus, 9/6 Double Double Bonus, and 15/9 Deuces Wild only providing 99% returns.

Mohegan Casino

The Virgin Hotel in Las Vegas, formerly known as the Hard Rock, now houses the Mohegan Casino. As I stroll down Paradise Road, the street sign still proudly displays the old name, a reminder of the property's past. However, beyond the signage, the hotel itself bears the unmistakable Virgin branding. This transformation, though significant, is just one of the many challenges the property has faced.

The casino was incredibly quiet with hardly any activity. There were only a handful of players at the tables and possibly around ten others scattered across the slot machines.

At the casino, the price for playing craps and double zero roulette was $10, while six-deck blackjack cost $15. Opting for double-deck blackjack would set you back $25. However, pai gow, Three Card Poker, and 3/2 Free Bet Blackjack were unfortunately not available.

The exclusive selection of digital table games at this gambling establishment is provided by a skilled Casino Wizard. With a minimum bet of $1, players can enjoy Baccarat and craps, while 6:5 blackjack and 00 roulette tables require a $3 minimum bet.

At the salon, you'll find the finest selection of video poker games, particularly at the $1 denomination. This exclusive bank near the salon offers an enticing progressive royal flush jackpot, adding an extra level of excitement to your gameplay. If you prefer playing with quarters, fret not, for there are also exhilarating options available for you. Among these options are the 9/5 Double Double Bonus and 9/6/5 Double Bonus games, both of which feature progressive jackpots that can be found near the salon. However, if you're seeking the absolute best odds, the $1 denomination is where you'll want to be. Here, you can enjoy top-notch games such as the 9/7 Double Bonus, 9/6 Double Double Bonus, and the 15/9 Deuces Wild. So whether you're a quarter player or a dollar player, there's a thrilling video poker experience waiting for you near the salon.

Mohegan has witnessed minimal modifications since its grand inauguration in March 2021, with the recent addition of the Betfred sportsbook. However, notable absences from the gaming area include Crapless craps and Spanish 21.

Silver Sevens

Silver Sevens proved to be quite the unexpected find during our exploration of the eastern side of the renowned Las Vegas Strip.

During our previous trip, we noticed that there were only four tables left in the pit. One of them was dedicated to craps, while the remaining three tables were reserved for blackjack.

The casino relocated the pit near the parking deck elevators, resulting in the pit size increasing by more than twofold.

I glanced around the bustling casino floor, searching for an available table to try my luck. A quick scan revealed that the only open spot was at a six-deck blackjack table with a 3/2 payout ratio. The minimum bet for this particular game was set at $10, a reasonable amount to place my wagers and enjoy the thrill of the game. Interestingly, as I continued my observation, I noticed that the other games, although currently closed, also displayed a minimum bet of $10. These alternative options included the lively craps table, the enticing double zero roulette wheel, the intriguing Three Card Poker, and the ever-popular Ultimate Texas Hold'em.

I've come to realize that video poker at the locals casino I frequent is rather lackluster. It seems that the selection of games with a 99% payout rate is quite limited. Gone are the days of scoring a delightful $1077 from a royal flush on the favorable pay tables. This was brought to light in a report by VPFree2 last month.