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Neon Survey

Description of sign(s)

1. Name: Stardust Hotel and Casino

2. Owner: Boyd Gaming

3. Address: 3000 S. Las Vegas Blvd.

3b. Additional Site Details: This is a large casino property that is clearly a center of attention.

4. Condition: Structure 4 Surface 4 Lighting 4

Notes: See description

5. Form: plyon, fasica, porte cochere

6. Specfic Description: Even though the façade of the Stardust has gone through many changes, streamlining itself over the years, yet retains aspects of it's original flavor. The tower faces northwest and southeast and is adorned with horizontal bars of red neon underlining each floor. The top tube only stretches approximately one-quarter of the way across the face, and with each floor, the neon gets increasingly longer. The result is the building being cut across the face at an angle, with one half being illuminated by the red neon and the other by ambiently blue lighting. Large Channel letters spelling "Stardust," are bordered by red neon and filled with incandescent bulbs. The Majority of the external signage is on the low rise structure close to the street, with the tower located to the northwest behind it. The array is comprised of two small pylon message centers, a porte cochere, the main pylon, and assorted entrance signs. On the south side of the building alongside a large parking lot, an entrance sign hangs above aa two-sided corner entrance, Wrapping this small corner, polished gold raceways and trim create borders for the accordion surfaced pediment, and shoot up vertically into the sky on the far ends. Blue neon shines from behind the shining trim above the door to illuminate the whit accordion façade. The trim above that is adorned with two tubes of gold neon on the top and the bottom, hidden in recessed channels to cast a gold halo from behind. The two vertical edges are lined with incandescent bulbs. On the south wall of the small corner, channel letters stand on the top edge of the golden molding, reading "Casino." They are black on the exterior, painted white on the interior, and filled with incandescent bulbs, and bordered with red neon. On the Southeast edge of the building another entrance of a bit more design Above a set of doors, and the blue lit accordian façade and golden halo cast metallic trim, a Squared "U" shape made of polished metal raceways, holds a back lit message center housed n a black cabinet. On either side of the vertical legs of the "U" shape, another single raceway rises slightly higher int the air. All the raceways are lined with incandescent bulbs. Above the cabinet, black channel letters, spell "Stardust." They are finished white on the exterior, filled with incandescent bulbs, and outlined in red neon. Moving around to the eastern facade of the building, the façade is a three leveled pediment in the accordion pattern, and separated with the polished trim. The Yellow and blue lighting illuminate this façade also. The pattern is only interrupted by oval shaped back lit cabinets, placed every so often. Eventually you come to the porte. It is no longer finished with mirrors, but still retains the raceways lined with incandescent bulbs. The surface in between is filled with white stucco finish. What is left is a series of 5 hexagonal shapes crafted out of raceways and hung a section ceiling lower than the rest. Geometric patterns radiate from this center piece. North, past the porte cochere a section of building juts out to the east. It contains an entrance on the north and south faces, and two on the east face which are parts wrapping around from the previously mentioned entrances. Over the north and south entrances the "U" shaped polished metallic raceways and external flanking raceways, as seen before on the southeast entrance, play host to a narrow LED message center and channel text spelling stardust. The letters have the same treatment as the previous sign as well, and spell "Stardust" in channel letters. They too are filled with incandescent bulbs and bordered with red neon. Above the text, channel pans are in the shape of four pointed stars as seen on the main pylon, are slightly scattered as if to be showering over the text. They are multi colored, centered with arrays of incandescent bulbs and interior neon contours. The accordion façade and lighting are below the composition. Below the accordion pediment, a polished gold bullnose creates a pediment above the door and wraps around to the east face of the structure. A pointed end polished metallic cabinet is placed in the section of the bullnose over the door, spelling "Casino Entrance" in channel letters and filled with red neon. The surface of the bullnose is laden with incandescent bulbs. The façade wraps around the front with another pointed end cabinet reading entrance in the same fashion as the previously mentioned text. A small section of foliage and shrubbery line the west face of this extension of the casino before the same arrangements of sign are seen repeated on the north face. Passing the entrance the property opens up into a courtyard with an arrangement of low rising concrete cylindrical fountains created a multileveled garden of spurting water and plants. Just past the courtyard another entrance is found created out of the northeast corner of the building. Like the other entrances, elements such as the blue lit accordion face, double rows of vertical metallic raceways, properly treated channel letters, are present. The gold raceways wrap the corner with backlit cabinets on the east and north faces. The channel letters read "Stardust" on the east face and "Casino" on the northern face. The ceiling that the overhang creates is finished in polished metallic material and laden with incandescent bulbs. Just outside the last entrance the first of two low rise message pylons. The one located on the north end of the property is larger and more spectacular. The large triangular cabinet's faces are backlit, slightly concave message boards. The tops of each o these cabinets in adorned with a smaller, purple steel cabinet, approximately eighteen inches tall, and running the length of the cabinet. "Stardust is spelled across the length of the cabinet in channel letters, and filed with rose neon. The cabinet is laden with incandescent bulbs, creating a canvass for the letters to reside. The three edges, which is the gap where the three signs meet and the bottom of the cabinet are covered in incandescent bulbs. The surfaces are treated with polished metal. The pole which the cabinet sits is a white, two sided, support with two peaks growing out horizontally about two-thirds up the height. The shape, along with a Stardust style star channel pan in its center, is a representation of the repeated image associated with the logo of the property. The edge of the post is treated with a border of purple paint and lined with purple incandescent bulbs. Just inside the border stripe a channel recesses forming another border for a tube of purple neon. The star pan channel in the center is bordered in teal neon and filled with incandescent bulbs. A top the entire cabinet is an array of stardust stars of various colors, bordered in neon, and or filled incandescent bulbs. The array is assorted again to appear as if they are being showered, tapering to one single star at the top. The entire cabinet rotates slowly from right toleft. The cousin to this sign is at the extreme south end of the property, set before an entrance give a larger double backed cabinet sits off center on a square post. The white plastic face is housed in a white steel cabinet with rounded edges. The top or the sign is comprised of the same purple cabinet and channel letters seen in tops of the concave message boards of the rotating relative at the north end. The width of the cabinet is strewn with incandescent bulbs, continuing underneath as well. The post is painted two tones.

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

8. Media: steel

9. Non-neon treatments: graphics, paint

10. Animation: chasing, flashing, oscillating

Notes: All of the bulbs, which reside in the fascia signs which designate entrances, oscillate rapidly. The entrance sign a bit closer to the north end of the property also contain the pan channel star shapes, with incandescent bulbs in the center. The bulbs which, reside on the widths edge of the small pole sign at the south end of the property, oscillate giving a twinkling effect. The main pylon's animation is rather simple considering the amount of lighting. Bulbs which create the dazzling background chase each other upward to the very point, then once they reach the top, each letter light up from left to right, one at a time, then off one letter at a time. The letters all turn on simultaneously while, while the background chases up, leaving the lights off in its trail. The text then shuts off as well. The small incandescent bulbs lacing the background of the main body of the sign oscillate subtly, twinkling themselves. Each letter of the text contains a single row of incandescent bulbs, just inside the border of the red neon. This row is always on in a chasing animation from left to right even when the letters are dark. The animation for the three sided, pole sign, at the north end of the property is adorned with sparkling animation as well. The purple bulbs, which create the border of the main base, chase each other from bottom to top, and the star shape in the center is filled with oscillating incandescent bulbs. The bulbs, which also encrust the bottom surface of the cabinet, oscillate as well. The incandescent bulbs, which adorn the background of the text portion of the sign, also sparkle with a soft random oscillating pattern. The stars which sit on top of the cabinet, animate in a random, non descriptive fashion. The inner star shaped pans oscillate with incandescent bulbs, and the neon borders flash on then off, in a clumsy random order.

The three-sided sign also rotates, one of the few animatronic signs on the Strip.

11. Environment: To the south of the Stardust is the Westward Ho, and to the North is Circus Circus. It stands with these two as well as the Frontier as vestiges of an older era of Las Vegas resorts. The Riviera also resides across the street. Vast shoots of concrete, spread out in front of the hotel, creating a continual plaza which runs from north to south. It contains lush flowers and fountains that toss water to each other is shooting arcs. In the daytime, the white of the remodeled façade is almost blinding against the concrete.

Artistic Context

1. Manufacturer: Ad-Art (pylon); SSI (porte cochere)

2. Designer: Paul Miller (pylon) Brian Leming ( porte cochere and facade)

3. Date of Installation: 1968

4. Date(s) of any major redesign/move: The original Electra-Jag style letters were replaced in 1991 by a sleeker Helvetica type face, as well as the letters for Enter the Night being changed to read "The Wayne Newton Theatre" in 1999. Also in this year, the facade was changed to a reserved white finish. The accordion shape is still present but no longer tri colored. The move was presumably made in an attempt to compete and fit in with its bigger corporate competitors.

5. Thematic Influence: The Stardust's theme revolves around an outer space/science-fiction theme, which was exceptionally popular during the era which it was created. When the original design, no longer present, was created in 1958, the Russian space project of Sputnik was just realized.

6. Artistic Significance: This is one of the most widely-admired and imitated signs on all the Strip.

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