Las Vegas

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t The Bellagio and Paris Las Vegas amid the glitzy fantasyland of the Strip

Experience Las Vegas

Occupied by the Ancestral Puebloan peoples until around AD 1150, the Las Vegas area later became the home of several Native American tribes, including the Paiute, until Mexican traders arrived in the early 19th century. Mormon pioneers built a fort here in 1855, establishing the beginnings of a settlement in the area, which gradually developed.

Officially founded in 1905, the city of Las Vegas expanded in the 1930s with the building of the Hoover Dam across the Colorado River, some 30 miles (48 km) away, and the legalization of gambling in 1931. The influx of construction workers with money to burn, and the electricity and water provided by the dam, paved the way for the casino-based growth that took place in the 1940s and 1950s. Since the 1990s, ever more extravagant resorts have been built in Las Vegas, including the impressive Bellagio, Venetian, and Cosmopolitan – the city has six of the ten largest hotels in the world – and this brilliant expansion shows few signs of slowing.

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