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Clock outside the Venetian Resort Hotel on Las Vegas, similar to the one in St Mark's Square

Las Vegas (the Meadows or grassland) was a name given by the Spaniards who used water in the area while heading north and west along the Old Spanish Trail from Texas. In the 1800.s areas of Las Vegas Valley contained artesian wells that supported extensive green areas or meadows.John Freemont travelled into the valley in 1844 when it was still part of Mexico. He was a leader of a group of scientists, scouts and observers for the U S Army Corps.In 1855 following the annexation to the U S, Brigham Young sent 30 Mormon missionaries to convert the Paiuti Indian population. A fort was built near the current down town area, serving as a stopover for travellers between Salt Lake City and a colony at San Bernardino, California.Las Vegas established itself as a railroad town in 1905 when 110 acres were sold off. The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino is located on the Las Vegas Strip. It is a Venice themed casino and hotel built on the site of the old Sands Hotel and is owned and operated by the Las Vegas Sands Corporation. The Venetian has 4, 049 suites and a 53 storey extension called the Palazzo is nearing completion. When this is open it will have 3, 025 suites at which time the Venetian Resort will have 7, 074 hotel rooms and suites and will be the largest hotel complex in the world. The Venetian opened in 1999 and in addition to the lake in front of the casino the Grand Canal Shoppes has indoor gondolas which will take you around the mall. Many outside features of the hotel are based on original buildings in Venice such as the white facade of the Venetian - the Doge's Palace. The clocktower is taken from the "El paron de casa" Bell Tower and the high arched bridge is based on the Rialto Bridge.

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