Cosmopolitan Is Latest Vegas Hotel-Casino to Introduce Partial Smoking Ban

  • Smoking has been banned in certain areas of The Cosmopolitan since September 11
  • Guests can smoke while seated at table games, within the sportsbook, or in a lounge
  • MGM Resorts, Las Vegas Sands, and Wynn Resorts have introduced similar bans since reopening
  • Las Vegas casino operators have reported high-numbers of positive employee COVID cases
Cosmopolitan Las Vegas
The Cosmopolitan is the latest Las Vegas hotel-casino to introduce a new no-smoking policy as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Limiting the COVID-19 spread

The Cosmopolitan on the Las Vegas strip has become the latest of the region’s hotel-casinos to ban smoking in an effort to limit the spread of COVID-19 among customers and employees.

banned smoking in all public walkways and resort corridors

In a Monday announcement, the property said it has banned smoking in all public walkways and resort corridors. The prohibition went into effect on September 11 with the aim “to further protect the health and well-being of our guests and employees,” according to a spokesperson for the company.

Although players will be unable to smoke in certain restricted areas, casino guests will be permitted to smoke while seated at a table game or slot machine, seated inside the Cosmopolitan Race and Sportsbook powered by William Hill, or seated inside a lounge. Although masks are mandatory on the property, they may be removed while actively smoking.

Other Vegas smoking bans

Like most other casinos on the Las Vegas Strip, The Cosmopolitan reopened on June 4 following a period of COVID-19 enforced closures. The resort opened under strict health and safety guidelines enforced by state authorities, but the smoking ban follows a more recent trend in Vegas casinos.

Let’s Clear the Air: Park MGM is smoke-free”

Earlier this month, MGM Resorts International announced ParkMGM and NoMad Las Vegas would reopen on September 30 as the first fully smoke-free casino resort on the Las Vegas Strip. The resort’s website has been updated with the slogan: “Let’s Clear the Air: Park MGM is smoke-free.”  The resort is the last of MGM’s properties to reopen following COVID closures.

Las Vegas Sands Corp updated its health and safety policy in June, asking players to refrain from smoking while playing table and card games. Similarly, Wynn Resorts spokesman Michael Weaver said the company’s no-smoking policy has “evolved in steps” since reopening in June. The operator has banned smoking or vaping at table games without plexiglass.

Some other areas of the US have adopted statewide casino smoking bans during the pandemic. Earlier this month, Governor Phil Murphy indefinitely extended New Jersey’s prohibition on smoking inside casinos. Meanwhile, a bill to introduce a ban on smoking in Pennsylvania casinos received local support last month. If passed, the bill would allow state authorities to decide whether there should be a statewide smoking ban for casinos.

Las Vegas’ continued COVID troubles

Last week, the Reno Gazette Journal reported that hundreds of employees of two Las Vegas casinos had tested positive for COVID-19 since reopening in June.

According to company reports, Las Vegas Sands has seen 339 positive cases of the virus at its Venetian and Palazzo resorts since June 4, out of a total of 42,637 tests. Meanwhile, Wynn Las Vegas, operated by Wynn Resorts, has seen almost 500 positive tests and three deaths among employees since reopening.

Julia Peek, deputy administrator of the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, also reported that 26% of those infected in Clark County, which includes the Las Vegas Strip, had recently visited a hotel, motel, or resort. More than 63,000 positive COVID tests have been recorded in Clark County alone, with 74,000 recorded in the whole of Nevada.