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Cannabis Lounges Are Coming To Las Vegas

Cannabis Lounges Arrive in Las Vegas
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Cannabis Lounges Are Coming To Las Vegas

It’s about time that cannabis consumption in Sin City got kicked up a notch.

Las Vegas is perhaps the one portion of the United States where, unless you are some sort of stark-raving mad tyrant on a mission to lodge your foot inside the deepest bowels of civil society, anything goes. It’s been the gambling capital of America for decades now, unapologetically swallowing up billions of dollars of big, working-class dreams each and every year without missing a beat.

It is a place where the booze never stops flowing, where both the beautiful and charmingly loathsome come to mingle and go buck wild inside the same test tube of degeneracy. It is hell on earth for the unlucky and paradise for winners, the neon sandstorm known as Sin City.

Interestingly enough, something extraordinary happened a few years back that made Vegas more than just a hot travel spot for those with an affinity for wagers and the debauchery that looms in the shadows of this desert town. Nevada legalized marijuana for recreational use — a move that was destined to turn Vegas up a notch by giving its patrons the freedom to buy and consume the herb conceivably in the same way they’ve been doing with alcohol all these years.

But when the cannabis-curious showed up to take part in this fourth dimension of Babylonia, they soon found there was nowhere for them to partake, no designated spots for cannabis users to consume this legal green. Something had to give.

Fortunately, it just did.

Cannabis lounges will soon be a part of the Vegas scene.

It was just last week that the city council approved a measure that will allow consumption lounges to start popping up all over the city. Not only is this a first for Nevada, but it is also a move that has not yet been embraced in most other jurisdictions where marijuana is now legal. As it stands, only Alaska, Denver and San Francisco have some version of social marijuana use on the books.

But for this concept to come to Vegas, it means that toker tourists will no longer have to break the law to enjoy legal weed. State law prevents pot consumption in public areas, and don’t you even dare think about chiefing up in a hotel room unless you want to pay a hefty cleaning bill. It is a godsend for the tens of millions of people that touch down in the city every year. Because, well, even the ones that have never smoked pot before in their lives are bound to try it there.

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, right?

All but one councilmember — a retired Las Vegas police captain by the name of Stavros Anthony — were in favor of allowing cannabis lounges. His primary gripe was that it was wrong for Las Vegas to move on social pot use before the state goes that way. However, the other council members argued that it was just a matter of time before Nevada caught up.

“We can’t wait for the state to act,” said Councilman Bob Coffin. So, act they did.

Location, Location, Location

The ordinance will give way to around 20 or so cannabis lounges opening in Vegas. But don’t expect to see these joints in or even around the main drag. The lounges are not allowed anywhere close to the casinos.

This means people won’t just be able to slide out of Caesars Palace and into a cozy area where they can get red-eyed and ripped in a social setting. Unfortunately, the highest amenity is going to be an Uber ride away. Pot parlors also can’t be near schools and churches.

They can, however, turn up near legal marijuana dispensaries, which will likely happen in a big way. And that’s a good thing, considering one crucial detail of the consumption lounge ordinance — none of them can sell weed. Nope. It’s all going to be a Bring Your Own Weed type of situation in Vegas.

These establishments will have the freedom to sell paraphernalia and perhaps even munchie items and beverages, just as long as they do not contain alcohol. Booze sales were one aspect of the ordinance that got kicked around by the council, but the option was eventually eliminated. Some say this was done to gain the support of the local police.

Still, it’s going to take a little time before cannabis lounges are operational. City spokesman Jace Radke said it could take several months before cannabis users can relish in these consumption lounges. So, we doubt they will be ready in time for the height of the summer travel season, but let’s hope the wait won’t be long.

In the meantime, while none of the hotel casinos are pot-friendly, it has been our experience that nobody is going to say much if you happen to step out on the balcony and fire one up. But get too stoned and then try to burn through your life savings in pursuit of riches and you could end up getting banned from a casino. A new rule imposed last year by the Nevada Gaming Commission gives casinos the right to toss out any noticeably high patron.

Apparently they’ve even trained their security details to recognize stoned gaming. So, just try not to act like you’re too happy or having any fun and you’ll probably be fine. Just remember, the House always wins.

TELL US, have you ever been to a consumption lounge?

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