[Canniseur: In the long run, Vegas’s casinos should be nervous about ‘consumption’ cafes. In the short run, not so much. Until alcohol sales can be combined with toking, I don’t see the sustainability of consumption lounges. And, my prediction is…when it’s realized cannabis & a glass of whatever, is what people really want, that’s when lounges will win. Until then, people will pop into the lounge, toke up and then head to the casino.]
Las Vegas will become one of the few municipalities in the country to license cannabis consumption in lounges — a move that could transform the city into the ‘New Amsterdam’.
The Las Vegas City Council recently approved an ordinance that authorizes the so-called ‘social use venue’ licenses.
Under the new ordinance, existing licensed cannabis businesses may apply for a new $5,000 per year license to open a social use lounge. These establishments must be physically separated from cannabis retail locations, may not sell alcohol, and must be located at least 1,000 feet from schools and casinos. Entry is limited to patrons over the age of 21 and cannabis consumption is not permitted outside or in the public view.
Acres Cannabis, which operates a 19,000 sq. ft. store, plants to open a nearby consumption space featuring a concert hall and full-service kitchen. Councilman Bob Coffin, who sponsored the ordinance, believes that many cannabis businesses will open lounges adjacent to their retail locations.
Many casino operators are worried about the new industry, which isn’t permitted near casino properties. New cannabis lounges could draw the city’s millions of tourists away from casinos and hotels, where they traditionally spend most of their entertainment time and money. For now, the Nevada Gaming Control Board has warned that casinos friendly to cannabis users could lose their licenses.