Las Vegas’ First Cannabis-Friendly Hotel, The Lexi, Up for Sale

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Las Vegas, the neon-lit city that never sleeps, alongside the casinos and glitz, was abuzz with another exclusive addition, The Lexi. Hailed as the city’s first cannabis-forward hotel, it aimed to deliver an offering as exciting and unique as its ‘Sin City’ surroundings. However, the owners are now looking to pass the baton and sell the groundbreaking establishment.

Situated on a prime 1.3 acre landscape just west of the Sahara Avenue Strip, The Lexi was a project helmed by Elevations Hotel and Resorts. Confidentially put up for sale through Paramount Lodging Advisors, the boutique property’s list price is being kept a secret. The news of the sale was first reported by Casino.org on their Vital Vegas blog.

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The Lexi has a rich and varied history. It first saw the light of day in September 1978, christened as the Las Vegas Inn and Casino. The original establishment, complete with 64 rooms and its own gaming floor, was not immune to financial turbulence, however, and filed for bankruptcy just six years later in 1984. The saga continued as it transitioned into a non-gaming Ramada in 1991, and thereafter, rebranded as a Travelodge.

2001 brought a wave of change when Doug DaSilva, the former owner of the Thunderbird Hotel, purchased and injected new life into the establishment. Investing a substantial $4 million, he transformed it into the upscale boutique property known then as ‘The Artisan’. The Artisan garnered the attention and admiration of art lovers, as it was adorned with reproductions of famous paintings in every room. However, despite favourable reviews and a steady stream of loyal customers, financial woes reappeared, and DaSilva, like his predecessor, filed for bankruptcy in December 2008.

The property changed hands again in 2010. Siegel Group, known for their low-budget extended-stay residences, acquired the hotel but later sold to the Phoenix-based Pro Hospitality Group, later renamed as Elevations, in 2022 for a sum of $11.9 million. An additional renovation round worth $3-$4 million saw the property rebirthed as The Lexi in June 2023.

Elevations unabashedly promoted The Lexi as Vegas’ premier cannabis-friendly hotel, a milestone move following the state’s legalization of recreational cannabis in 2017. The Lexi restricted consumption of the legal high to its fourth floor, employing filtration systems to block second-hand smoke, which generated mixed reactions.

Elevations Hotels’ president and CEO, Alex Rizk, voiced proud declarations upon The Lexi’s relaunch, emphasizing its commitment to embracing and normalizing cannabis in the hospitality industry. Rizk heralded the project as a reinvention of heritage properties for today’s discerning travelers.

Hopes were high as The Lexi declared its intention to add a state-permitted cannabis lounge to its unique services. Still, it seems that this plan went up in smoke, and with the current sale in motion, it seems unlikely to materialize. Once touted as a pioneer, Fhe Lexi’s future is now uncertain as Las Vegas’ first cannabis-forward hotel.