When Will Las Vegas Buffets Re-Open? Will, they Re-Open?

Las Vegas Buffets are an institution, for decades these pig put joints have allowed customers to roll on in and pile their plates high, normally for a pretty modest fee, with food of …questionable quality. In recent years things have changed and the Las Vegas Buffet reinvented itself as a high-end luxury food fest!

We LOVE las Vegas Buffets, with the likes of the Bacchanal at Ceasars, The Wicked Spoon, at the Cosmopolitan, and the splendid Wynn Buffet all delighting our foodie taste buds and allowing that real Vegas-style blowout! You can even Buffet in untold luxury with endless champagne, Lobster and Fillet Steak, and the mind-blowing Sterling Brunch…Well, you could.

When Will Las Vegas Buffets Re-Open?

Like all good things in life, like seeing your family and friends, having a meal out, going to the cinema, heck even just leaving the house! COVID came along and ruined EVERYTHING! Buffets were one of the first Las Vegas casualties and were quickly shut down, all that touching and cross-contamination was a recipe for public health issues in a pandemic. They are likely to be the last to recover, and this has led many to prophesize we have seen the last of the Las Vegas Buffet.


After a trial of re-openings at the Wynn, the Pandemic re-took the upper ground and the Buffets closed back up. However, as of May 1st restrictions are easing again and some Buffets are set to Re-Open.

Which Las Vegas Buffets are Open Right NOW?

Below is a list of the Currently Open Buffets in Vegas right now. Some may be limited times and some are operating as table service and quite different from the original form so make sure you check the opening times. Dinner seems to be particularly restricted right now.

Wicked Spoon @ the CosmopolitanOpenReview

Garden Buffet @ The South PointOpen

Garden Court Buffet @ Main Street StationOpen

The Bacchanal Buffet @ Caesars Palace – Open

MGM Grand Buffet – Open

Wynn Buffet – Open

Bellagio Buffet – Open

The Luxor Buffet – Open

Las Vegas Buffets Opening Soon:

Check back soon as we hear of more Buffets Opening…We expect the Situation to change throughout 2022.

Will Las Vegas Buffets Ever Open Again?

Red velvet pancakes at Bacchanal Caesars Palace

Let’s start with the good news, we are pretty sure they will Re-Open. For several reasons, not least they are no more a threat to virus transmission than other restaurants, maybe a little but not significantly, we will come back to that.

The bad news is the economic omens look very bleak for the whole buffet model in general and this has led many to for-see the end of buffets worldwide. We have heard a lot of rubbish from experts about this and people who should know better have been peddling myths and horror stories.

Other Buffets Shut Forever

With the likes of Soup Plantation and Sweet tomatoes closing their doors forever, rumors started and the regular armchair experts already had the obituary notices written and published. However, we feel this is a gross misunderstanding of several situations.

Garden Fresh, cited concerns around the buffet model as their reason for liquidating the franchises. Let’s not forget however that the company had filed for bankruptcy in 2016 with $175m of debt and we do not know how much of their decision was based around the concept of buffet and how much was just cutting their losses? Other Buffet chains are not so quick to follow suit!

Buffets are costly and Casino’s were looking for a reason to shut them

Aria Buffet

Let’s start our rebuttal to this with a simple and startling fact. The most profitable restaurant in all of North America is Caesars Bacchanal Buffet! The initial investment was over $100million and has seen continual investment ever since and the doors were lined with queues all willing to pay $60+ per head. That doesn’t seem a likely candidate for retirement if it can in any way be saved.

Buffets are HUGE business, They are so far from the “loss leaders” we have heard them called. The high prices and large numbers of customers make them money-making machines. Preparing food on mass is far cheaper than ala carte cooked to order models and the minimal staff needed to run them all add up to one thing. profit.

It is no accident every hotel has its own Buffet and the competition to attract diners is fierce. Buffets make money. After all anywhere in the world where large numbers of people need to be fed cheaply the go-to model is the buffet. Cruise ships, All-inclusive hotels, weddings, funerals, etc… Big numbers and low cost means a buffet!

Financially the Casinos will get the buffets open as SOON as possible, which just leaves one question, safety.

Buffets are unsafe and cannot be allowed to Re-Open

This is one of the biggest misunderstandings there is. There is almost nothing inherently unsafe about the buffet model of eating. Restaurants, in general, are fairly good ways to transmit the virus, but with COVID-19 the biggest risk is close contact with other people. Buffets are no better or worse than other food establishments and with social distancing measures could be perfectly safe, Vegas buffets are also large open spaces so probably a lot safer and able to handle more people with larger operations easier!

The issue with buffets is their image. They are associated with poor hygiene and vats full of bacteria-laden food at lukewarm temperatures. And really this all has a grain of truth, we have all had lukewarm food at buffets that has been left out too long at that perfect propagation temp, most of us who have visited dubious buffets at all-inclusive resorts may have felt the after-effects too. But Covid-19 is a respiratory virus, it is not spread like other “vomiting bugs” and does not replicate outside of the human (or some animals) body.

Really the only risk (apart from close contact) in a buffet is by touching serving spoons. This is easily solved by the continuation of the small serving dishes common in Las Vegas buffets or having a server add the food to your plate, such as the Carvery stations.

The closing of buffets was a knee-jerk reaction, and one that we agreed with at the time, the virus was very new and little known, anything at that stage to slow the spread was positive. But when planning a re-opening there is no inherent reason Buffets are any less safe than any other eatery!

Of-Course we hate to jump on the internet expert bandwagon and claim to be virologists or worse still, know more than the public health experts, we don’t. But that is the thing. This will be in the hands of the public health experts and virologists and when The Buffets submit re-opening plans then there is no scientific reason they cannot resume, and we trust the experts will see this and grant the licenses, if we are incorrect, they will see that too and keep them closed.

Bottom Line, if the authorities grant them safe you can be reasonably confident they are.

When will the Buffets Re-Open then?

If we assume the plan is to Re-Open then we have to ask the question of when? This is a much tougher question to answer as really no one knows. It is safe to assume that Buffet restaurants will be last to Re-open.

One of the cruel aspects of this pandemic is the earliest financial casualties, these businesses that had to close first, and the resulting job losses will be the last to open up again. This is simply as they are, at least perceived to be the higher risk. We have already discussed how buffets are not actually that higher risk but the perception is still there so they will need the most time and the most detailed start-up plans.

Vegas is still running at limited capacity, so there is no really need to open up eateries on mass so the dining options are being supplied by easier to control al-a-carte options or takeaway food. This is likely to continue throughout June and July.

Only a select few hotels are actually open and the next on the list is to open up more of these as demand for rooms increases. Next on the list are Shows. This is another BIG earner in Vegas and the strip will again begin to feel a little more normal when the shows start back up. Target dates at the minute are early July, but things change fast.

Come late July we expect the fate of the Buffets to be more clear. At the minute things are so fluid and we don’ think the casinos have seriously considered it yet. By the end of July, we think this will have changed. That is not to say they will be open for gluttony by then just we should begin to have a clearer picture.

Of Course, when they do open back up, it is highly unlikely they will be exactly like they were, at least for a few months, so what can you expect.

What will Las Vegas Buffets be like when they Re-Open?

Wicked Spoon Layout

While two do not envisage that much change, there will be some very obvious things that have to change off the bat. First will be social distancing, people will need to be 6 feet from each other, like in most public places the world over right now. This may be enforced by marks on the ground, members of staff, or lest to common sense.

We imagine capacity will be much less and tables more spread out ensuring good separation between parties. There will be more little dishes that you can pick up and take back to your table and people are anticipating much more service. You will be less likely to be left to your own devices. This could be as simple as asking for a scoop of this, or a piece of that. By having servers you cut out the “touching” that increases the chance of viral spread.

There will be huge efforts behind the scenes and table turnover will require a deep clean before new guests can sit down, but this is fairly basic hygiene and not a huge deal to implement.

With these simple measures in place, enjoyment will only be minimally reduced while the environment safe for workers and guests.

Masks are a big issue in eateries. You obviously cannot eat with the mask on, but then constantly removing it to take a bite could lead to increased infection risk. This is a thorny subject and one we will leave to the authorities and Casino action planners for now!

And of course, there could always be a second wave…then all bets are off!

Have Your Say?

Looking forward to getting back into the Buffets? Are you happy they would be safe or would you rather avoid for a while? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below, and let us know if you are ready to hit Vegas Again!

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22 thoughts on “When Will Las Vegas Buffets Re-Open? Will, they Re-Open?”

  1. Havent been to Vegas in 20 years.Now that I’m retired plan on making several trips to Vegas a year. But not until the buffets reopen .There are steak and rib joints all over NY but theres only 1 place to have a Vegas buffet.

    • Yeah, and NY steak joints are far better than vegas joints!

      Vegas Buffets really are an amazing experience, if you haven’t been in 20 years you may be in for a surprise, the quality is way up but so are the prices, still vegas buffets are like nothing on earth!

      Keep safe and know that vegas is waiting for us all in the near future

  2. We come every fall and one of the things that we love are the buffets. We will certainly be very disappointed if they are not upend running soon.

    • Some are open now on a table service basis but hopefully things will just keep getting back to normal soon.

      Sure you will still have a great time, but we know the buffets are so intrinsic to that Vegas experience


    • Bacchanal, MGM Grand Buffet, Garden Buffet, and the Wicked Spoon are all now Open!

      More slated to return very soon!

      Agree totally it’s not Vegas without a good pig out, and a good bottomless Bar too!


  3. Are any of the Caesar’s property buffets open please? would love to do the Sterling brunch, but not sounding like that is happening.

    • Hi, sorry as of now only the Bacchanal Buffet is open out of Caesar’s properties Buffets, and even then it’s dinner only.

      We really love the Sterling Brunch but there are no signs of it returning yet, things are opening up fast though, and keep an eye on it, it may open back up soonish.

      WickedSpoon is back open (a great option for brunch) as is MGM Grand Buffet with other MGM Buffets opening soon.


      • Being away from my family and friends in Ohio and teaching here in Vegas, the buffets were my favorite thing. This is my last year here and please, for the love of humanity, please tell me they will open soon (Sam’s Town or any Station)

        • Hi,

          Things were really looking up at the beginning of Summer, as case rates plummeted and Vaccine Rates soared, Many of the bigger Buffets opened up, but with the rates creeping up, Delta surging, and the Vaccine drive stalling, this re-opening has also stalled. There seems to be little sign of the smaller and cheaper places opening up, they are not backed by as much money as the larger Buffets, and it does not seem financially Viable yet for them to open.

          We are sure they will at some point, but when is the work of pure guessing, hopefully, the Delta variant can convince enough t get the shots and finally bring this all to an end!


  4. buffets keep me in the casino i stay at like Harrahs.I sure hope they come back otherwise we go to other casinos that have their buffet open like South Point great place great buffet.

    • Hi Glen,

      Yep, really hope they start opening up soon as there are still very limited numbers open and the prices have gone insane!

      We will certainly look at adding South Point to our Buffet top 10 instead of some of the closed offerings if things don’t pick up soon!


  5. We sure hope they open up the buffet for full service at the M casino and at Sam’s Town. Also at Sunset casino but the station people at the top are hard core on not opening their buffets. At least there is a Golden Corral near Sunset casino that is always packed and making tons of money from the people who used to eat at Sunset buffet. We like the off strip buffets much better price wise than the strip buffets. On the strip diners not only have to pay high rates to park but really high prices at the buffets. And seniors really cant afford those high prices anyhow if they live on social security and a small pension. So would the owners of the M and Sams Town please open your buffets soon.

    • Yep, off-strip Buffets are definitely better value, and hopefully, they all open up soon, the more that are open the more the competition will drive down the prices!

      Fingers crossed things are getting better!


  6. The line up at restaurants are crazy in casinos they need to open up more buffets for a city this size
    Even the buffets with buffets open are lined up, they need more to open.

    • Thanks for your thoughts Glen,

      Things were getting hectic when we were there in March and getting worse by all accounts.

      From what we can tell people are gagging for the Buffets to pen back up, especially for dinner, the demand is there and we are all pretty much over covid, and in the Buffets that are open, there is no more risk than walking down the Strip!

      It’s a shame they are not ahead of the curve on this, it’s rare for Vegas to miss an opportunity to make some $$$


  7. I agree. Buffets are tradition and attraction for Vegas. Casinos that have and or brought back buffets have more customers and locals than otherwise thought. Go to South Point if you don’t believe this. They have been persistent on keeping their buffet open and at a great price and constant line. Totally respect that from a casino and see if there’s ever slow time there, not likely. Any casino that has buffet open is just to survive as that’s a show of respect for it’s frequents too. I actually only gamble at casinos now that have buffets. Just my opinion.

    • Hi Jack,

      Respect the commitment to the Buffets!

      They are just part of the whole Vegas experience and history and need to come back to their full glory.

      South point is a great buffet, especially for the price, shame it’s just so far from the center of the Strip



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