Las Vegas is in the midst of a bed bug outbreak, with four of its largest hotels reporting blood-sucking critters in recent months.
Reports began coming in late last summer of guests leaving Sin City covered in bites, prompting an investigation by the Southern Nevada Health District.
Authorities found four hotels. — including the Venetian and the Mirage, which cost $1,200 a night, had suffered bed bug outbreaks in the past five months.
This comes as bed bug infestations appear to be becoming more common, after Paris was hit by one last year and the insects were also spotted crawling around the London Underground.
Experts say the outbreaks may be driven by a harder-to-kill species, which has recently migrated north from tropical areas. In the United States, it has already been confirmed in Florida and Hawaii, although experts fear that it has traveled further north.
A guest @wilkinz posted photos of the aftermath of an encounter with unwanted roommates at the Paris Las Vegas.
Bedbugs have become an almost routine danger for Las Vegas hotel guests, some claim, while Pete Rob (right) said he was only offered a room change after his attack at the Horseshoe Hotel and Casino .
The health department launched investigations after receiving reports from members of the public.
In their first investigation, revealed in records, officials contacted the Venetian after receiving a report of bed bugs at its hotel.
The Venetian confirmed that a guest was moved to a suite and had all of his clothes laundered after he reported bedbugs in his room.
Pest control experts were also called, who confirmed that bed bugs were present and treated the room with insecticide. It opened to the public five days after the bed bugs were first detected.
In October, a guest staying at The Mirage also reported bed bugs to local health officials, saying they had been bitten during their stay.
Her complaint read: ‘Hi, I just returned from a stay at The Mirage in Las Vegas where I was bitten by bed bugs.
“The hotel inspected the room, confirmed the presence of insects and refunded my money.”
An inspection report showed that pest control experts had found insects hiding in the bed frame, which were quickly eliminated with insecticides.
In December, inspectors also received a complaint from a guest who stayed at Encore who said she found bedbugs in her room.
Do you think the right is a cockroach? Can be removed. Pictured above are images of bed bugs at two major Las Vegas resorts that were posted on social media.
The hotel quickly dispatched a bedbug-sniffing dog who found a live insect, the report shows.
The staff treated the room with insecticides.
And at the Excalibur Hotel and Casino, two reports of bed bugs were received in December and January.
In the January complaint, the individual wrote: ‘I found bed bugs in my hotel room. I filed a complaint with the hotel management and they conducted an investigation. They sent me an email telling me that their inspection… came back positive for bed bugs.’
And in the December complaint, one individual alleged that they left “bites everywhere” once they got home.
In both cases, officials investigated the rooms and removed the bed bugs.
The Nevada Resort Association said in a statement: “The minuscule number of incidents reflects the comprehensive and proactive health and safety measures and pest control procedures that Las Vegas resorts have in place to prevent and address problems.”
“Unfortunately, these pests can be carried anywhere unknowingly on luggage and clothing.”
They added: “Although incredibly rare, when reported, our members take swift action in accordance with health and safety requirements.”
It was unclear how the bugs got into the rooms, but Las Vegas welcomes more than 38.8 million people each year, both from inside and outside the United States.
With an increasing number of infestations globally, this increases the risk of guests arriving with the insects (possibly caught on their clothing) which then infest the rooms.
Furious guests have previously taken to social media to report infestations in their rooms in Las Vegas.
Among them was an anonymous individual who stayed at the Paris Vegas and who posted online photos of bedbug bites on his legs.
“I had the worst stay at the Paris Vegas Hotel,” they wrote.
‘The room was full of dust and I was allergic the first night. Then my roommate got bitten by bed bugs!
‘The hotel didn’t give any compensation or anything!’
Another video from 2022 shows bedbugs running on the floor of the Circus Circus hotel in Las Vegas.
Residents of Chicago, New York and Philadelphia should inspect their mattresses, as experts report that their cities ranked first, second and third for bed bugs in 2023. The new findings were based on economic data from bed bug treatments both residential and commercial.
Bed bugs do not carry disease, but the bite of one causes red, itchy welts on the skin, similar to those of poison ivy.
Over the past two years, bed bugs have been reported in seven different hotels within Las Vegas.
Circus Circus, which was finishing a major three-year renovation, reported two infestations in six months in 2022, records show.
And Caesar’s Palace, where rooms can cost up to $40,000 a night, also fell victim to unwanted guests, along with Planet Hollywood, the Palazzo, the Tropicana, the MGM Grand and the Sahara.
Bed bugs are small insects that measure up to a quarter of an inch long.
During the day, they may hide in nooks and crannies in rooms, including electrical outlets, under the bed, and small gaps in the headboard.
But at night they emerge attracted by the heat of human bodies and suck the blood of the guests.
The bugs can leave large, red bumps on people’s skin, indicating where they bit someone, which often tend to be in a line.
In more severe cases, they can cause skin infections and there is concern that they can transmit infectious diseases like mosquitoes, although this is rarely reported.
Infestations are very difficult to treat because the insects have become resistant to most insecticides used.
Often this is because they have evolved to have thicker armor that chemicals cannot penetrate.