Ed Komenda, Reno Gazette Journal Published 11:01 p.m. ET Sept. 30, 2020 | Updated 1:57 p.m. ET Oct. 1, 2020CLOSE Although this is a smoke-free casino, there are three designated smoking areas nearby. USA TODAYLAS VEGAS – The ashtrays are gone.The card table view is clear.The air is crisp.”My clothes aren’t smelling,” Pete Thorne, 81, said, standing near a slot machine inside Park MGM – the Strip’s first smoke-free hotel-casino.The MGM Resorts property reopened Wednesday for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the resort for seven months, and its return came with a new rule: No smoking.Scattered around the casino are signs reminding guests of the ban that limits lighting up to three designated areas outside the building: As the COVID-19 death toll rises, smoking inside casinos resurfaced as a make-or-break detail for travelers planning vacations, and companies such as MGM Resorts restrict where visitors can puff tobacco. More: 36,000 Las Vegas casino workers at MGM, Caesars can keep health insurance until MarchVisiting guests warmly received the smokeless atmosphere. “It’s the greatest thing in the world,” said Jane Stalls, 72, of Storden, Minnesota. “I hate sitting next to people who smoke. Anytime someone sits next to me smoking, I move.”Guests can smoke in three places: The Rideshare Zone off the main lobby,


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