Harrah's Tahoe

Stateline, Nevada

William Harrah, whose gaming and entertainment empire had grown from a small bingo club in Reno, built his premier five-star flagship hotel in Tahoe 1971 to replace his original Stateline casino and showroom.


Designed by Martin Stern, Jr., who also designed Harrah’s Hotel in Reno, and later the Marina in Atlantic City, Harrah’s Tahoe, which opened in 1973, was the first casino to ever receive a 5-star diamond rating from the American Automobile Association (AAA).


Shoreline development and building design were carefully regulated and controlled in Tahoe to protect the natural environment of the lake. Martin Stern’s design went through rigorous environmental impact revues. The tower, originally designed for 24 stories, was lowered to 18 and turned so that its narrowest façade faced the lake. The original white façade was changed to brown with sculpted panels on the tower ends designed to resemble a tree trunk so that the entire structure would aesthetically blend into the tree-covered surroundings. Stern’s proposal included a complex set of schematics with perspective projections of the tower into the existing landscape.


Harrah's Tahoe

Harrah's Tahoe with view of Lake Tahoe, 1976


Stern's original tower design before it was altered to more closely reflect the

Stern's original tower design before it was altered to more closely reflect the natural setting
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Location of Project

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  • 1971

    Original construction of Harrah's Tahoe by Martin Stern Jr. for $20,000,000

Skyline Comments
Photograph of a rendering of the International Hotel (Las Vegas), circa 1968:
This is a great image. Thanks
Photograph of men playing faro in a Fremont Street casino (Las Vegas), circa 1930:
I love this picture and the other one you have on the Faro Game. Please let me know How I...
Film transparency of the swimming pool and patio of the Thunderbird Hotel (Las Vegas), circa 1950s:
The 1950'S images are great! Do you have more like this and how can I order reproductions?