The client approached NBBJ because he had seen a western style Polo store we had designed in southwest Utah. He envisioned a Wild West themed casino and wanted us to design the interiors. Craig Hardman led the design effort for NBBJ. Mr. Hardman felt the design challenge was to find a way to make an old west identity feel like it fit with the glitz and neon of Las Vegas. The job was made harder to fit inside a building already designed by another Architect.
Our unique response to this challenge was to realize that the world of a cowboy is about more than just worn wood finishes. The cowboy’s world is mostly about living in the great outdoors, sleeping under the stars, exposed to the elements, including beautiful skies and spectacular lightning storms. Our basic premise became to make the indoors feel like the outdoors. An array of custom designed lighting elements was used to help dramatize the outdoor world we were creating. The use of lighting also helped to tie together the cowboy theme with the gaudily lit gaming machines.
Design features included a “day” sky scene over the dining room contrasted with a “night” sky scene over a gaming area; a thundercloud and lightning storm over the bar was integrated with the gaming machines to set off a “storm” of lighting and sound effects when jackpots were hit. Finishes included reclaimed wood barn floors. Jennifer Mann, as a member of our design team, had the brilliant idea to create the cow head wall sconce and the horseshoe pendant light. We also created a variety of custom chandeliers, pendant lights and wall sconces throughout the facility.