I love Las Vegas. I've lived in California the majority of my life
and have family all over Nevada, including not far from the strip, so I've spent a lot of time roaming all the different casinos and soaking up all the history I can. Whether you've only visited Vegas or you call it home, pretty much everyone knows about the famous Westgate Resort---a stunning hotel and timeshare resort located in Winchester, Nevada, about a block from the northern end of the Las Vegas strip.And if you do not, I highly recommend stopping by once you start planning a vacation for several reasons.
The Westgate was once Elvis' stomping grounds.
The Westgate opened to the public in 1969 and was known as the "International Hotel." And before the resort changed its name to the Westgate In 2014 was the Las Vegas Hilton. The hotel is so staggering it even held the title of the largest hotel in the world from 1981 until 1990. After opening, it took the Westgate only a month to book one of the most famous entertainers on the planet---Elvis Presley.
The King was already well into his career when he signed up to sing at the Westgate. Elvis's contract would be his comeback, and the resort advertised it as such. There was a lot of talk surrounding the Westgate, and people were excited. Elvis performed 837 shows at the Westgate over a seven-year stretch, which equals about 120 shows per year. Elvis's last performance was in December 1936. In December 1977, he passed away from a heart attack. The Westgate asked Wayne Newton, another popular performer of the era and close personal friend of Elvis, to come and fill his spot at the Westgate. First, Newton didn't want to go to the Westgate because that was Elvis's turf. But in the end, he and his band put together a medley of popular Elvis songs as a tribute.
And this is where the story gets interesting. Really, really interesting.
According to Wayne And multiple eyewitness accounts over the years, Elvis never left the hotel. One night while Wayne and his band were performing a show, the Elvis medley started. Wayne said it was the first time that he sang it for an audience. As Wayne looked out into the dark crowd, he noticed a man coming down the stairs. It was Elvis, he says, come back to enjoy the music. Wayne even did an interview on the Hulu series Celebrity Ghost Stories about the encounter.
Elvis is said to haunt the 30th floor
But Wayne isn't the only one who claims to have spotted Elvis. Many people have reported Elvis sightings in the hallways on the upper floor of the resort where the "Elvis Suite" was. The suite was a 5000 square-foot room on the 30th floor. He's also a rumor to appear backstage at the international theater where Barry Manilow has a show.
Local ghost enthusiasts suggest catching a show and then going to do some ghostly exploring. If you're planning a post-pandemic vacation, casinos are still open, though they're abiding by CDC guidelines. You can still visit the Westgate and do a little hunting for yourself.
However, there are more fabulous things to do at the Westgate than ghost hunting. You can go check out the massive outdoor pool and get yourself a cabana. I also recommend trying a steak at the award-winning edge steakhouse. And, of course, the casino is bar-none.
The last time I went to Vegas, I stayed at the Westgate. I'm disappointed I didn't get a chance to do some hunting. But you must believe the next time I head out that I'll be booking a room.
Are you brave enough to stay the night at the Westgate? Do you have your own stories from visiting the resort?