This week, the New Frontier Hotel and Casino was opened to the public for the first time in over a week for spectators to roam through and bid on items that are up for sale. When they browsed around in the hotel, however, they found that there was not much left. Even the numbers on the doors had been taken off. The building had closed on July 16 to make way for construction on the new Plaza Hotel that will be built in its place and ready to open by 2011.

The 65-year-old hotel had a lot of history behind it and was considered a Las Vegas landmark. It first opened on October 30, 1942. It was then named the Last Frontier Hotel and the second to be opened on the Las Vegas Strip. It was built by R.E. Griffith and his nephew, architect William J. Moore as a 107 room, Old West themed hotel. A stagecoach picked up guests from the airport and contained a mock town filled with Western artifacts named the Last Frontier Village.

After 13 years, the building was demolished and replaced by the New Frontier Hotel. In 1956, a year after reopening, Elvis Presley put on his first Vegas show there. In 1964, the building was torn down again and was rebuilt with a large Frontier sign out front making it the tallest freestanding sign in the world. Three years later, Howard Hughes bough the property and changed the name to the Frontier Hotel. In 1998, Phil Ruffin bought the property for $165 million from Margaret Elardi who bought the hotel from Hoard Hughes’ company in the 1980s. It was then formally changed back to the New Frontier. He planned to build a $2 billion jazz themed resort to be called the Montreux but couldn’t afford the price. To help pay for it, he sold 3.5 acres to Donald Trump In May, he sold the rest of the property to the Elad Group who are now building a Plaza resort there.

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