Center for Gaming Research
UNLVGamingReseach on Facebook UNLVGaming on Twitter
Neon Survey

Description of sign(s)

1. Name: Riveria Hotel and Casino

2. Owner: Riveria Holdings Corporation

3. Address: 2901 S. Las Vegas Blvd.

3b. Additional Site Details: The Riviera is another of the properties on the Strip which brought its borders to the street. It is one of the properties with an extensive collection of signs on its properties. The glass wall and block long façade, which incorporates infinity lighting and neon displays. A highly animated an reflective ceiling of the westernmost pedestrian element right along Las Vegas Boulevard also plays host to a continuously pulsing entablature of text and neon. The outer portion of the wall facing west is also adorned with raceways, backlit signs, neon stars, and a host of other signs as well. The northwest corner is a unique collection of fascia wall design and sculptural elements on the corner as well for the "Nickeltown" portion of the casino. Along the east end of the property, more Riviera logo/wall signs denote entrances, while the eastern most edge plays host to the massive Riviera Pylon. Various signs also reside on the eastern side of the property. Text signs are located in several positions among various structures. There is also a rather busily illuminated awning, which is lined with incandescent bulbs and text.

4. Condition: Structure 5 Surface 4 Lighting 5

Notes: See description

5. Form: plyon, fasica, porte cochere

6. Specfic Description: The main attraction to the Riviera is its mirrored round wall which serves as a multiuse billboard built around the neon advertisements for the Riviera's big show: Splash
Front Façade: The front façade of the Riviera is best described by starting with the giant glass well and heading north. The radius of the giant reflective extravaganza is in the general direction of the southwest so reflectivity is extremely good during the afternoon hours. The surface of the structurally integrated visions is surfaced with giant reflective mirrored panel which give way to the multicolored neon puzzle work of the Splash logo. The logo advertises for the show using iconography from the show itself represented with pan channel figures lined on the interiors with neon of corresponding colors for which they are painted. The text that spells "Splash" is painted red, with the circular raceway that sits in its background is painted yellow. The "Splash" text sits above the organic shapes of water shooting out from underneath the array of signage, painted blue and purple. The image of the female inside the logo text is graphically treated with the proper registration of illustrative quality. She is also lined with neon in the proper colors over the major outlines of her form. The entire array sits on a black background laden with incandescent bulbs. The neon is arranged so that as it progresses toward the ground the organic shapes radiate in a repeating pattern outward. The blue and purple neon radiate toward the ground while the red neon in the "Splash" radiates left toward the other side of the wall. Green channels spurt out of the top lined with green neon as well. On opposite sides of the radius wall, there are a series of signage that mirror each other. "Riviera" is written in channel letters filled with neon, and a series of internally lit, color cabinets, lined on the edges with incandescent bulbs. The middle portion of the wall is occupied with various sized stars, raceways, and incandescent bulbs found on extensions and diamond shaped faces. The stars are lined on the interior profile of the shape with blue and pink neon, as well as incandescent bulbs on the interior as well. The bottom of the radius wall is adorned with adorned with internally lit cabinets as well as various small neon creations. Moving north along the face of the building the façade the external elements are greatly supportive of the mirrored walls, and just as brilliant in their own right. The façade begins just to the south of the giant mirrored wall, with a section lined with vertical bars of neon animating in red, pink, purple, and blue neon. Riviera is written in cahnnel letters and filled with incandescent bulbs. The letters are outlined in red neon. On either side of the rectangular section, two small versions of the giant mirrored wall support green and blue wavy channels, lined on the interior edges with corresponding neon colors. Incandescent bulbs are present as well. The façade on the north side smoothly transitions into a wall of transparent plastic cubes, lit from the inside, with raceways running down the edges. This façade runs the entire length of the building, until the end is reached at the northwest corner and Nickeltown. Along the facade, internally lit cabinets surrounded by raceways occupy the vicinity of the lower portion of the sign. The faces are colored plastic and treated with graphics and text.
Toward the end of the facade, a collection of small signs is fused together to create a single collection of busy signs. The entire structure is a chaotic vision of relief sculpture smashing into text and iconography, while bright, vibrant colors and neon, fight for attention. The majority of the sign is located on the body of the building, reaches down to touch the ground. Four fluted columns rise up from the ground to meet the bottom base of the massive wall sign. The columns rise up into a sculpted cabinet that is heavily crafted and adorned with ornate edges of hard-coated foam or fiberglass scrollwork. The swelling and swirling scrolls swell out in three dimensions. The entire border of the bottom section is turned into a detailed, organically shaped, cloud like shape. The scrollwork as well as the columns is finished white, with the recesses being toned a golden color. The effect accentuates the three dimensional nature of the design. The surface of this bottom portion is a diagonally crisscrossing pattern of white lattice- work on top of a golden surface. The center of the open surface is occupied by a giant pan channel, of the top three points at a purple, five-pointed star. Flanking either side of the star are small, steel, closed face cabinets, in the shape of squatty looking five pointed stars. They are varying sizes and are painted the three separate colors of purple, yellow, and green. The top point of the largest purple star rises through the top part of the bottom cloud section touching up into the massive collection of signs.
This particular sign centers on a top logo reading "Riviera Slot Adventure" in channel letters in the style of action adventure movies such as "Indiana Jones." The first word is written in the logo style of the Riviera, and painted yellow on the interiors. The letters for the two words, "Slot Adventure" are bent with the force of motion and painted red, grading into an orange. Behind that, a circular cabinet, representing a globe, is painted blue in the center and fading to white. Flanking either side of the globe, associated more with the top portion of the globe, pairs of arching bronze colored cabinets slightly arch outward suggesting shining or an explosion. They are laden with incandescent bulbs. The remainder of the sign between the bottom star structure and the top slot adventure text, is occupied by a varied array of signage that can be designated between two halves of the collection. The left-hand side of the sign consists of three-dimensional sculptural elements, channel letters, relief elements. The far left side of the collection is rounded out by the three dimensional relief of crashing waves, creating a background for the three-dimensional structure of the mermaid. Red channel letters spell "Splash" above the mermaid, in white channel letters painted red on the inside. Neon lines the interior of the letters as well. Below the mermaid, more channel letters spell "Gardens" in red channel letters painted yellow on the interiors and lined on the interiors with neon. Above the crest of the wave a relief of a train shoots toward the north with a yellow and red circular cabinet above that with the text for jackpot junction. The train relief is also the designed with perspective to appear as if it is moving forward.
Directly to the left of the train is set of yellow channel letters painted blue on the interior reading "Jackpot Factory," lined on the interior with neon. A purple backing cabinet is graphically painted on the face with images of gears. Just to the left of the text is the three dimensional sculpture representing a stack of coins. The space below the "Jackpot Factory" a purple cabinet with a colored face reads with graphics and text for "Valley of Games." Directly to the left of the "Valley of the Games" cabinet a three dimensional cherub is holding a large nickel, with a banner above that. The cherub is painted with the proper flesh tones, and the nickel is adorned with the proper details. The wings animate, utilizing two tubes of neon shaped as wings and in different positions to appear as flapping. A white arched steel banner, with blue text, reading "Nickel Heaven." Neon floats over the top of the letters. The right hand side of the entire collection is just as detailed and elaborate, if not ore than the left hand side. A white steel cabinet cut into the profile of the text, which is painted yellow with red outlines. The text reads 'Slot Frenzy' in two lanes. The red borders are lined with incandescent bulbs. The remaining negative space in the center of the sign is a painted slot handle with a circle of neon around the top of the handle. To the right of that, the surface of the board is created out of relief of faux rocks above what is a set of railroad tracks. A mine cart is on the tracks with giant diamond shaped gems residing in the interior space. A cabinet made of an arched banner and a square cabinet resides above the mine cart. The banner reads Double diamond in blue text, and "mines is spelled" in blue text on the rectangle. Further right the rocks give way to a portion of the cabinet, that reads "Jackpot City" in yellow channel letters, with yellow neon. Vertical raceways lined with incandescent bulbs shoot upward in the area of the text. All are supported on a multicolored flat cabinet, predominantly painted red.
Nickel town: On the Northwest corner of the property three distinct images comprise the signage. The main marquee for Nickeltown over the entrance, a Riviera logo just to the right of that, and a large sculptural fountain, that dominates the corner with it's presence. Over the brass and glass doors for the entrance, a polished metal overhang radiuses above the door, and contains the words Nickel Town in channel letters. The two words are written horizontally in a line, and separated in the middle with a pan cjhannel star also lined with neon on it's interior. The star is centered with a channel number "5" which is filled with white neon. The star's neon colors are pink and blue, and are arranged as interior lining of the star. The underside of the awning, as the rest of the front facade, is adorned with the incandescent bulbs, placed neatly in the designated prismatic shapes. The neon rings also are present, running the pediment across the façade. Elements of the electric wall can be seen as well, with the metal diamonds supporting incandescent bulbs trailing upward from the awning up to the façade of the building behind it. Several different sizes of star rise up as well, they are identical in color and design shape. Since the interiors do not contain a channel letter, they contain a channel shaped star, lined with incandescent bulbs in the center. A different sort of star shape is present as well. This shape is an eight-sided shape, reminiscent of a snowflake. When I say snowflake, it is essentially a cross shaped piece crossed, with an "X" shape. The shape is designed out of a pan channel, filled with incandescent bulbs. White neon backs the channel.
Directly to the right of the entrance, the mirrored façade reflects the entrance, as the reflective surface house vertical, neon bars as well. The three different colors are Blue, gold and green. Consuming the majority of the concrete expanse created by the small plaza, is the neon-laden fountain of light and steel, with a base of ceramic pool. The design is a circular pool, covered in 1"x1" ceramic tiles, and filled with water. Thee square poles are bent over, looking as if they are spraying up out of the fountain. They appear almost as if a bouquet. One is painted Blue, one gold, and the other red. These poles are striped with neon tubing of the corresponding colors. Internally lit cubes, of the same color scheme as the primary palette. Wrapping around the circumference of the top half of the plumage, is a silver pediment that radiuses around the fountain. The finish is polished metal, and matches the overhang presented in the Nickel Town signage. Raceways run along the top and bottom edges of the face, wile the internally lit advertisements occupying the open space of the pediment every so often.
Riviera Convention Center: Directly to the east of Nickeltown, is the Riviera Convention center. Signage for the building is first evident when traveling west, looking at the east face of the building. Not far on the north side of the east face of the building, large channel letters hang denoting the building. The Riviera logo text is spelled in the signature text, outlined with red neon and filled with incandescent bulbs. Below that, a two lined text reads convention center in red channel letters, lined on the interior with red neon. On the south side of the building, two lines of text reads, "Royale Pavilion" and "Entrance" below that. These channel letters are red, and lined with red neon on the interiors.
Tower: Along the north side of the main tower, "Riviera" is spelled with giant red channel letters, filled with incandescent bulbs, and lined with red neon. The rear entrance is shared for the hotel, and the convention center, and is denoted with signage, and an overhang. A large blockish overhang is cantilevered off of the side of the building and projects outward, toward the east. On the front edge, an arcade of arches is evident, which reveal five tube-like vaults that project the half radius all the way back to the building. All of the edges of the raceway, including the spaces on the underside, which separates the vaults, are lined with incandescent bulb lined raceways. The Riviera text spells "Riviera" across the front of the cantilevered structure. The channel letters are painted red, lined with red neon and filled with incandescent bulbs. Left of the cantilevered structure are letters, which spell convention center. They are channel letters with red plastic faces.

7. Type of Display: neon, incandescent, backlit, LED

8. Media: steel, plastic, glass, fiberglass

9. Non-neon treatments: graphics, paint

10. Animation: chasing, flashing, oscillating

Notes: The text fascia sign just to the north of the giant glass display illuminates with a background of neon tubing which chases from right to left. The pattern of colors running across are a sequence banks of red, pink purple and blue vertical neon tubing, chase each other creating a pulsating movement of the individual banks of these colors. While they are animating, the channel letters, which spell "Riviera," are dark and proceed to light up one letter at a time. Once all lit they remain lit, until the background stops with all the bars illuminated. Once all the bars are lit, the interiors of the letters turn off one at a time starting on the far right. The giant mirrored section of the building, advertising for the Splash stage show. The sequence can be best described from its dramatic powering up. The entire sign comes alive with a rapid upward chasing pattern covering the surface of the tower. Once alive, small white bulbs grow out of the end of the space on the top and bottom of the end of the "Splash" text. Once all the previous elements are illuminated, the letters in the Splash logo shut off, illuminate one letter at a time in red neon, then the white neon figure of the seal balancing a ball on the end of it's nose, lights up. The neon bordered circular raceway, then animates with the bulbs in the center chasing each other in a clock-wise sequence. Once lit the vast array of white bulbs grown out of the end of the text begin to gently oscillate, as well as the sparse assortment of floating and attached incandescent bulbs on the wall of the tower. Once the bulbs animate for a few seconds, the entire wall chases downward, becoming black as night, except for the Slash logo text. Underneath the entire front side of the western face of the Riviera, the incandescent bulbs which cover the entire surface oscillate in a wildly, while the ringed entablature on the wall animates quietly in comparison. The multi-colored rings of neon tubing chase each other from left to right, chasing the distance then repeating. The sequence then changes direction and chase from left to right. Creating the tops and bottoms of the entablature are raceways lined with incandescent bulbs that chase each other from left to right. On the surface of the west wall incandescent bulbs chase each other along the raceways which run horizontally around the internally lit cabinets. The small vertical raceways which run inside the clear plastic boxes chase each other from top to bottom, but all the raceways are offset to each other by a few seconds. At the North end of the property the signage for the Riviera's, "Nickeltown" gambling attraction, dominates the corner. He animation on the large exploding sculptural fountain lights up the entire corner. The three rocketing pieces of steel are wrapped in repeating bands of their corresponding colors of blue, purple and yellow. All three simultaneously chase from bottom to top, until completely lit. Then they begin to animate in a chasing pattern from bottom to top. After a few moments of chasing, they chase from beginnig to top once more, leaving al the tubes dark in its path. Along the circular entablature, which runs the circumference of the top mass of the fountain, incandescent bulbs chase each other from right to left, but only on the side which faces the casino. The wall, which faces north, contains the multicolored banks of vertical neon bars that animate in a specific pattern. They chase each other from right to left, then only the purple neon tubing illuminates, they chase again, then only the blue neon tubing illuminates. They chase once again, and then only the gold bars illuminate. The bars chase yet one more time, then all of the tubing illuminates, thus ending the sequence. The main entrance to nickel town is adorned with neon text and images, but only the stars higher up on the wall itself animate. The incandescent bulbs elevated above the surface of the mirrored wall, animate in a soft oscillating pattern, adding the twinkling effect. The larger five pointed stars are animated on the interior by a center of oscillating incandescent bulbs, while concentric neon shapes echo outward in the yellow, purple and blue colors seen on the adjacent wall facing north. The smaller snow-flake esque star shapes are alive with oscillating incandescent bulbs. Looking upward along the north face of the closest tower, the giant vertical, Riviera channel letters animate one character at a time, oscillate then shuts off.

11. Environment: {environment}



















Artistic Context

1. Manufacturer: Federal Sign (fascia front glass)

2. Designer: Marge Williams/ Arch: Nikita Zukov (fascia design)

3. Date of Installation: 1988-89

4. Date(s) of any major redesign/move: Pylon was moved to Convention Center Dr. and Paradise Rd. c. 1988

5. Thematic Influence: {theme}

6. Artistic Significance: n/a

Return to index | Next: Rosewood Grill


Follow UNLVgaming on Follow unlvgaming on Twitter Twitter and UNLVGamingResearch on Facebook

© 2019 University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Do not copy or reuse without permission.

Last modified Monday, 05-Apr-2010 18:11:06 UTC