This week we move away from the glitz and glamour of the Las Vegas Strip and focus our attention to a small, long gone Downtown Casino that is often overlooked and forgotten by both the Las Vegas memorabilia collectors and locals alike, the Orbit Inn.
The Orbit Inn first opened in 1964 as a 73 unit, three story motel; part of the Best Western chain of hotels. It was the type of motel that a person or a couple on a tight budget would stay at while visiting Las Vegas, "unremarkable but clean enough" was a fitting description by a former occupant. It boasted a rooftop pool and air conditioning "by refrigeration" according to its advertisements.
The Orbit Inn would have had an unremarkable life and eventually fade into obscurity if not for Army deserter Richard James Paris. On the night of January 7, 1967 for reasons still unknown to this day, as his wife slept in the bed in the room they shared, he shot a bullet from a pistol into a pile of fifty sticks of dynamite. The explosion instantly killed him, his wife Christine, four other innocent hotel guests and injured another eight people. The resulting blast destroyed part of the roof of the Orbit Inn and partially collapsed the second and third floors onto the ground floor.
Photo from the Las Vegas Sun's 1967 story about the explosion at the Orbit Inn.
Orbit Inn Casino Chips
The chips from the Orbit Inn date from 1976 and are part of the first series of chips used when the casino was added to the property.
Chips from the Orbit Inn Hotel & Casino make a unique addition to any collection of Las Vegas Casino Chips.
For a full listing of all the Orbit Inn chips for sale at Spinettis click here.
Orbit Inn 1986 $1.00 Chip