Thursday, July 30, 2015

Aces Casino Blog "Blast From The Past:" The (Until Now) Untold Story Surrounding The History of L.A.'s 1930's First Gambling Ships and "The Battle Of Santa Monica Bay." Hint: Gamblers Lose. Again.)


(Ed. Note: Next up, Part 3 in our "Blast from the Past" series, and one of my favorites -- Looking back at the gambling ships of the 1930's, and the "Battle Of Santa Monica Bay."  Enjoy... )

Here at Aces Casino, the place widely recognized as the top orange county casino party in southern California, we're big on history -- Specifically the history surrounding the casino gaming industry and the many games that we love to play.  At one of our casino night events held recently, some questions arose that centered around OUR favorite stories regarding this relatively short, but interesting history surrounding west coast casino gaming.

When my response to their inquiry brought up "The Battle of Santa Monica Bay," you could hear a pin drop.  Quizzical looks were aplenty, as everyone looked at me and asked their one-word question.... "What??" 

"You've never heard of The Battle of Santa Monica Bay,?" I responded as if I was dumbfounded, yet with a slightly sarcastic tone.  "Why, It's only the greatest southern California naval battle in the HISTORY of Los Angeles casino gaming!"  To which our Aces Casino crew said, "Blarney!  But tell us more about this 'Battle of Santa Monica Bay,' Aces...."  (Ed. Note: Yeah, It's true.... I'm the one that asked.  Sue me, I had never heard the story.)

Why, I'll be happy to tell you, my friends... The story goes something like this.... Back in the 1920's and 1930's, way before Las Vegas was truly born, and right smack-dab in the middle of prohibition  (Ed. Note: back in your teenage years, I'm guessing...hehe), the L.A. residents from that time period loved to take a lil' drink (which were against the rules of prohibition) and play those famous games of chance that we all know so well (Blackjack, Craps, Roulette and the like), which were truly outlawed by the staunch rules against gambling in Los Angeles County.

That's where a man named Tony Cornero came in.

You can guess which one is Tony "The Hat" Cornero.

Tony Cornero wasn't big on the laws of L.A. at the time, and thought he had figured out a way to beat the system -- Gambling ships.  He came up with the idea that went something like this; If maritime laws allowed the playing of games of chance in international waters, than why doesn't someone get a big boat that's loaded with game tables and slot machines, float it out about 3.1 miles off the coast in Santa Monica bay, and "Viola!"  Meet the gambling ship "Rex," and instant floating casino. 

Not exactly the Disney "Fantasy," but not bad for the 1930's.

For it's day, the "Rex" had all the amenities that gambling buffs and top-notch Hollywood stars were looking for, and at just some 3 miles away from the Santa Monica pier, it (as well as three other ships known for providing the same mode of entertainment) was within easy reach of the "water taxis" of the time.  And, boy, did Mr. Cornero advertise his wares in the local papers....

Tell me you wouldn't want to catch a water taxi, and check this out.

Unfortunately for "The Hat," the then-California Attorney General, Earl Warren was NOT too hep or big on Cornero and his floating casino in Santa Monica Bay.  He set out to take "The Hat" down, and the way he did it was a stroke of genius.  You can read all about "The Battle Of Santa Monica Bay" by using this link.  It's a great piece of L.A. history, and no one tells it better than "LAIST."   Oh - But, before we go, we have to share one more photograph taken during former Attorney General Warren's raid that fateful day in 1939.  Here's a warning to those of you that love to gaze at vintage slot machines; You may want to turn away from the screen.....

Bet "The Hat" didn't dig THIS.  So sad to see...

And just for reference.... Those of you out there that are wondering why Aces Casino Entertainment goes the extra mile to bring these fun and informative stories to our long-time Aces Blog, when other companies can't even spell the word, "Blog" -- We love going the extra mile for ALL of our clients, as well as prospective clients.  Heck, out top-viewed blog entry of all time is the one about the three things that everyone should look into when hiring a good casino party company.  Our competitors are learning the ropes thru us; what do they say?  "Often imitated, never duplicated."  Every client of ours finds this out eventually -- We're NOT like ANY other casino party company out there.  We love what we do, and we do it well.  THAT'S why we're the top-rated orange county casino party company in the biz... OK, brag over.

That's all for now.  Hope you enjoyed Part Three of our little Aces Casino Blog trip down memory lane.... We'll be back on Monday with the last of the "scintillating" blog entries from the top orange county casino night party company "Blast From The Past" series.  See you then!

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