Sands Regency

Sands Regency

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Sands Regency is a hotel and casino located in Downtown Reno, Nevada. It is owned and operated by Jacobs Entertainment.


The Sands Regency opened in the early 1970s by the Cladianos family with a small hotel and casino. The hotel tower stood 15 stories and was not in the most prospective area of town at that time and even in some regards to this day but nevertheless it grew. By the late 1970s early 1980s a second tower and more casino space was built. By this time, the company was known as Sands Regent and the hotel’s name became “Sands Regency” By the late 1980s, a third and final tower had been constructed giving the hotel a total of 800 rooms, and in the new tower came a parking garage. The new tower was detached from the main two towers but at the same time connected with a link between it and the original towers.

The Sands Regency is very popular among locals, bowlers and Cribbage players, whom they cater to in great numbers. In the mid-1990s, Tony Roma’s Ribs House opened a location inside the hotel, a comedy club opened in 2000 along with an original “Mel’s” diner, all gaining to the Sands’ credibility. The parent, Sands Regent, by 2006 owned and operated three properties, all in the Reno Sparks area; they included the flagship, Sands Regency, the small Rail City Casino in Sparks and Gold Ranch Casino/RV Park near California off I-80 west of Reno.

Las Vegas–based Herbst Gaming (later Affinity Gaming), famous for its “Terrible’s” trademark, began looking into the Reno market in 2005 and liked what they saw. They wanted to get into the market quickly and saw opportunity with Sands Regent. They bid for and won the company assets, closing their deal in October 2006, and renamed all of the Sands Regent properties without “changing” the names. The Sands Regency became Sands Regency, “A Terrible’s Property”, while the other two properties became “Terrible’s” Rail City and Gold Ranch respectively. The Sands Regency began a major renovation in 2005, and Herbst Gaming finished it in 2007. They also renovated and expanded Rail City, which Sands Regent started. Sands Regent CEO Ferenc Szony remained on board.

Many Reno locals know the Sands for its vibrant exterior color schemes; for over 10 years the Sands was always red with white accents, then suddenly overnight in 2003 Sands Regent painted it a bright yellow with blue accents that received mixed reviews. After the Herbst buyout, they painted it a softer gold with red accents to depict a skyline on the hotel towers’ facade that received media attention for creativity.

Tony Roma’s Rib House was closed in 2006 and replaced with Fuzio Pasta and Steaks in 2007 as part of a renovation at the Sands, in 2011 it was closed down due to lack of popularity but quickly replaced with a casual-upscale bistro called “The Copa”. Mel’s remains in operation. There is also Taco’s Tijuana inside the hotel just recently opened, as well as a coffee shop with free wi-fi, and the hotel has a buffet with a different selection every night.

On February 1, 2013, Affinity sold the Sands Regency, along with the Gold Ranch and another casino in Dayton, for $19.2 million to Truckee Gaming, a new company led by Szony. In July 2017, Jacobs Entertainment purchased the property from Truckee Gaming for $30 million.

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