Below is the inside of a Marty's Carousel
matchbook that Andy bought on
in February of 2007. Below that is the outside scan of the matchbook which was
found at a flea market in the Chicago area.
Below is an article by Jim Perlowski on the Carousel & how he
thinks the chips above came about.
Any other information on Marty Kuzen or the chips
is VERY much welcome!
is an ad placed in the October 25th, 1968 issue of Now Magazine.
It prematurely announced
a change of ownership for the Carousel in downtown Las Vegas.
MARTY'S CAROUSEL CASINO: By James L. Perlowski
In April of 1964 the Silver Palace closed its doors after an eight year run.
Two months later a gaming license was issued to the McLaney group giving rise to
McLaney's Carousel Casino. McLaney's Carousel Casino operated until the start of
1968 when the Rizzo group took over and operated the Carousel until October of 1968.
Once again the Carousel was up for sale and the Rizzo group was looking for buyers.
was during the latter part of 1968 the Summa Corporation, under the direction of
Howard Hughes and Vern Olsen, was already operating the Desert Inn for over a year.
Mr. Marty Kuzen who was employed by the Desert Inn saw a once in a lifetime opportunity
and seized upon the moment. Probably realizing he would never acquire the wealth
he wanted by working for others, he left the Desert Inn in October of 1968. He purchased
the downtown casino center Carousel from the Rizzo group with the plan of operating
it as a Host/Owner.
He ordered $1 (and we now know $5) match play chips in
the Nevada mold good for craps, roulette and 21. Ashtrays were also ordered. However
for some unknown reason Marty never received a gaming license. My guess is he operated
the Carousel for a short time using the generic named Carousel chips along with passing
out his match play chips. From Harvey J. Fuller's "Index of Nevada Gaming Establishments"
it appears the Carousel was sold by the Rizzo group to a Mr. Garbian sometime in
Art Anderson in his 1994 "Casinos and Their Ashtrays - A Collectors
Guide With Values and Casino Histories" shows a picture of a Marty's Carousel
ashtray on page 32 describing it as.....4 1/8th inch amber glass, etc. Andy now has
one of Marty's ashtrays in his collection. It is pictured above.
box of Marty's Carousel match play chips was found by a friend of Andy's at the Tropicana
around 1981. No one seems to know how these chips ended up at the Tropicana but my
guess would be Marty went to work there after being turned down for his gaming license
to operate the Carousel and took this one box of chips (and maybe BOTH) along as
a conversation piece.
(In January of 2000, James Campiglia found a box of
the $5 match play chips from Marty's Carousel. They belonged to a woman living in
California. The interesting thing is that both the box of $1's my friend found at
the Tropicana in 1981 AND the box of $5's James found each had 94 chips in them!
Marty Kuzen must have taken 6 out of each box to give to friends OR what he hoped
would be future customers...Andy)