Renowned hotels and resorts along the famed Las Vegas Strip have reportedly dealt with instances of bed bug outbreaks over the course of the past 18 months, marking a challenge for some of Sin City’s opulent hospitality establishments, including Caesars Palace, Planet Hollywood, Circus Circus, Palazzo, Tropicana, MGM Grand, and Sahara.
Bed bugs, tiny bloodsuckers notorious for their resilience, thrive in crevices and emerge at night to feed on sleepers, leaving behind telltale marks of dried blood. With over 32 million visitors in 2021, Las Vegas faces bed bug challenges. According to Newsweek, hotels are susceptible due to travelers unintentionally transporting these pests. The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene emphasized that no hotel is immune to such infestations.
The initial complaint about bed bugs was lodged with the Southern Nevada Health District when a guest at Circus Circus reported being bitten in January 2022. Following this incident, hotel management conducted inspections and subsequently removed the guest room and adjacent spaces from service for two weeks for comprehensive treatment.
A public records inquiry by KLAS-TV unearthed that six other prominent Strip hotels encountered bed bug outbreaks of their own since then. In a parallel occurrence from January 2022, rooms at MGM Grand necessitated treatment after inspectors uncovered the presence of the pests. Similarly, the Palazzo had to address a room after a guest reported bug bites to health officials.
Among the few establishments to respond to KLAS-TV’s inquiry, MGM Resorts disclosed that in the rare event of a bed bug report, guests are swiftly relocated to alternative accommodations while the under-inspection room is sealed off. A representative from MGM stated, “Providing guests with a safe and enjoyable experience is our top priority, and we have robust preventative measures and response protocols to address and resolve any issues that may arise.”
October 2022 saw a Sahara hotel guest reporting squashing a bed bug, leading to positive testing and subsequent fumigation of the room. Tropicana faced its own outbreak in February 2023. Additionally, two properties under Caesar’s Entertainment umbrella tackled bed bug issues this year: Caesars Palace guests experienced bites in January, and an infestation was identified at Planet Hollywood in June.
Arik Knowles, Vice President and General Manager at Tropicana Las Vegas, highlighted the hotel’s proactive measures against infestations. He emphasized, “While highly unlikely, in the event of a complaint, we immediately isolate the affected room and its surrounding areas. At that point, a third-party service will evaluate the situation and provide a recommendation on appropriate next steps, including professional treatment should anything be found.” He further underscored their dedication to customer health and safety, emphasizing its paramount importance.
As these prestigious hotels navigate challenges related to bed bug outbreaks, their collective goal remains to provide guests with a secure and enjoyable stay amidst the glitz and glamour of the Las Vegas Strip.