9 myths people seriously believe about Las Vegas

People will believe silly things sometimes, and that’s definitely true for Las Vegas.

We know it’s “Sin City,” where we’ve spent millions telling tourists that you can go wild because what happens here, stays here. And you can totally do that, just don’t think you can come believing any of this.

Here are the most ridiculous myths about Las Vegas:

You’re tricked or drugged into gambling more

There really are people who believe that the resorts pump some sort of hypnotic gas into the casino floor to make them continue gambling. Yeah, not true. You also aren’t being drugged by the waitress. It is true though that most casinos don’t have clocks or windows, but there isn’t any science to back up that they effect how you gamble.

People only visit to gamble

A lot of our tourists come for conventions, to visit family, to shop, for business, to experience our nightlife, the list goes on. In fact, of the 41 million visitors Las Vegas saw last year, more than 5 million of them were officially at conventions (of which there were 22,000).

The games are all fixed and you’re never going to win

Alternatively: slots are looser at (blank casino). Yes, true, the house always wins, but people — both locals and tourists — hit jackpots all the time. Gamblers say it’s all about playing it smart and slow. Don’t just dump $50 into a Kitty Glitter machine playing one line; play some penny slots for a while and enjoy the free drink. But for those of you who have lost, thank you for contributing to the $9.6 billion of gaming revenue last year.

We’re just buildings in the middle of the desert

For those of you who’ve never been, there’s more to the city than The Strip. We have a sprawling outdoors scene around the city and is a short drive away. There’s Lake Mead, Red Rock Canyon, Mount Charleston and everything in between. Nearby there’s The Valley of Fire, Death Valley and if you like driving, a beach four hours away.

There are no small businesses

In recent years, small businesses have exploded around the city — particularly in downtown. Since Tony Hseih’s Zappos-led Downtown Project started, the area has seen an influx of restaurants and shops. Niche shops you’d otherwise see in Portland or Los Angeles have popped up and are going well. It can’t be denied that this isn’t true for the rest of the city, however, which is still lagging.

People work in Las Vegas, but no one lives in the city

The Las Vegas Valley has a population of more than 2,000,000, and that population is technically in the northwest, west and central parts of the valley. Think of The Strip as Manhattan in terms of commute — yes, most people travel to work there, but step a few blocks away from Times Square and all you see is apartments. Same goes for The Strip.

Buffets are for cheap, bulk eating

The essence of the buffet is variety, which stays true for the types of buffets we have. Sure, you can go to the $6.99 China Buffet, but the Station Casino buffets have been a reliable eat for locals for years. Beyond that, every Strip hotel’s buffet is different. Some are higher end, like the $50 Bacchanal at Caesars Palace and the Wicked Spoon at the Cosmopolitan, and some have lower pricetags like the Palms’ Bistro Buffet, where you can get endless crab legs for around $20.

You can drink anywhere in Las Vegas

As much as people act like this is true on a regular basis, this varies on where you are. Both Fremont Street and The Strip have open container laws, but the rest of the city is treated the same as everywhere else.

Las Vegas isn’t family friendly

This is something Las Vegans are tired of hearing. The Strip might not be the friendliest for your tween, but there are tons of things in and around Las Vegas that are perfect for families. I mean, we have families, too.

Missed anything? Contact Kristen DeSilva at 702-477-3895 or kdesilva@reviewjournal.com. Find her on Twitter: @kristendesilva