Hello, Yu-Or-Mi Sushi and the Durango Casino & Resort in Spring Valley, Las Vegas, Nevada

As a Las Vegas local, it’s always exciting to see new things open up in town. December 5, 2023 was the grand opening of the Durango Casino & Resort, a new hotel, casino, and resort in the Rhodes Ranch community in Spring Valley of the Las Vegas Valley in Nevada. Although I wasn’t in town to attend the grand opening, I managed to find some time a few weeks afterwards around Christmastime to check it out.

After parking in the structure and making my way into the building, I started my journey at Yu-Or-Mi Sushi to grab some food before exploring.

For my entrée, I ordered a chirashi bowl. If you’re not familiar, chirashizushi means “scattered sushi,” which, in practice, translates to strips of sashimi over a bowl of rice. A poke bowl is similar, but the sashimi strips are cut up into smaller cubes. Although poke bowls are technically eligible to be called chirashi bowls by definition, no reasonable restaurant would ever serve a poke bowl and call it a chirashi bowl, because they are just going to disappoint sushi enthusiasts.

Yu-Or-Mi clearly failed here. Not only did they serve a poke bowl in lieu of a real chirashi bowl, but the amount of fish included was so little that it couldn’t have been more than a few strips’ worth (while real chirashi bowls usually contain ten or more decently-sized slices of assorted raw fish). They filled the rest of the volume with pineapple and avocado, and even then, that mixture was only enough to just barely cover, with a thin layer, an astronomical amount of rice.

I can confidently say that this was the absolute worst chirashi bowl I have ever had in my entire life.

My friend got vegetable gyoza with truffle soy sauce and chives.

I like eating meat, and I especially like eating fish. Sushi is my favorite food. I tried one piece of this, and I liked these vegan dumplings better than the chirashi bowl. That should be an indication of how bad the chirashi bowl was.

My friend’s mom got a vegetable tempura roll with asparagus tempura, sweet potato tempura, avocado, and crispy shallots.

At least the menu was fancy, I guess.

After finishing my underwhelming meal, I walked around the resort to explore what else it had to offer.

There was a nice flower arrangement and some Christmas decorations near the entrance (because, as a reminder, I stopped by around Christmastime just over a week ago).

Down the hall, there was a lounge and bar.

Through this lounge, there was access to the outdoor pool area. It was closed to the public at the time, but they said it would reopen soon.

Around the casino area, there was a huge sports viewing area.

There was also an outdoors area called the George Sportsmen’s Lounge.

The George had its own entrance separate from the main casino; I left through that exit and looped back around to the front entrance of the resort.

Here is the view from the parking garage of the western suburbs.

Overall, I thought the Durango was nice, but not particularly special or iconic. I walked through the casino area and noticed that it already has a very unsettling lingering odor of cigarette smoke, which I think heavily detracts from the perceived quality of the resort.

I think the thing that makes the Durango stand out is the fact that it’s out in the suburbs, so it’s much easier for locals to stop by without having to deal with the chaos of the Las Vegas Strip. It also has plenty of free parking—there is a huge lot by the front entrance, and there is a large structure that connects to the northwestern corner of the building.

I don’t actually remember what the name of the lounge near the pool is, and I can’t seem to find it on Google Maps. However, it was nice enough that I would consider stopping by there with my laptop on days when I want to get out of my condo to get some fresh air and have a change of scenery while getting some work done. I assume it would get busy on the weekends, but it seems like a spot that’s preferable over a coffee shop because of how much of a luxurious vibe it gives off.

I’m not sure how much longer I’m going to spend living out in the suburbs, because I am considering the possibility of moving back into a residential high-rise on the Las Vegas Strip like where I used to live a few years ago, but because of its close proximity to the beltway, the Durango is quickly accessible and might still be worth it as a coffee shop substitute, even with the bit of an extra drive.