With a City Council vote 5-1 in favor of the lounges, it’s now official that cannabis consumption lounges are coming to Las Vegas, and it denied Councilwoman Victoria Seaman’s motion to stop such ventures to open their doors.
The city of Las Vegas has already opted into the licensing process by the Nevada Cannabis Compliance Board, which will start accepting application on October 14 through October 27. It’s believed that up to 20 lounges could open in first quarter of 2023.
Lounges will allow marijuana consumption outside of people’s homes for the first time since recreational use was legalized by state voters in 2016, including to estimate of 40 million annual tourists, who were smoking illegally in hotel rooms and back alleys. However, no alcohol sales will be allowed in such establishments.
Those opposed were mostly casino operators, who fought the bill with millions of dollars of contributions to politicians. Owners felt that it’s in their best financial interest if they stop the opening of cannabis consumption lounges as that would result in less time (and money) spent inside casinos.
Nevada retailers did more than $1 billion in medical and recreational marijuana sales in 2021, up by $318 million from 2020. 79% of the purchases came from Clark County, where Las Vegas is located.