After the Cannabis Compliance Board announced that it had issued the first 40 prospective licenses, there is hope that cannabis consumption lounges are about to finally enter the Las Vegas scene.
The Need For Consumption Lounges
Recreational cannabis became legal in Nevada in 2017 following voters’ approval of Ballot Question 2. The result allowed for the selling, purchasing, and consumption of recreational cannabis for adults. While this was a step forward, cannabis consumption in public places, including hotel rooms and the outside strip, remains illegal. This poses a major challenge for tourists who want the partake in the activity, which Commissioner Tick Segerbloom shared that he views as part of the Las Vegas experience.
The need for consumption lounges in the state has been present ever since, and Clark commissioners will now vote to allow them to operate across Las Vegas. There is currently only one consumption lounge in the valley run by the Pauite Tribe. It is a tasting room located on tribal land north of downtown Las Vegas and not subject to the same laws as the rest of Nevada.
The Lengthy Process
Regulators anticipate the first lounge will open in June next year; they had previously hoped that the lounges would be open last year. Part of the reason for the prolonged decision is the need to get it done right.
Following the issuing of consumption licenses by the state’s Cannabis Commission Board, prospective licensees will have 120 days to submit a security plan and other requirements. The plans must contain a protocol to prevent consumers from driving under the influence and distributing unlicensed cannabis products. The lounges must adhere to numerous local and state laws to get approval. The spokesperson of the Cannabis Commission Board, Tiana Bohner, stated that lounges would only to allowed to open once they’ve passed a final safety inspection and the licensees receive final licensure and board approval.
Licensees with opening plans in the works, such as Oasis Cannabis, have spoken about the lounges and how they would be operated. Andrew Glashow, CEO of Serenity Wellness LLC–Oasis’s parent company that received a license, emphasized the importance of having a tight security plan. Glashow went on to say, “There’s going to have to be a sense of responsibility placed on the business owner but also accountability on the part of the customer. We’re still figuring out what the right method and message is.” He also touched on how they would cater to people who want cannabis-infused edibles and drink by having a kitchen in their lounge.
Another licensee, Christopher LaPorte, has partnered with Thrive Market to create their lounge. His vision of consumption lounges involves “food and beverage, entertainment, nightlife, and cannabis.” LaPorte foresees the lounges as becoming places where people gather to listen to music and smoke cannabis.
The Impact Of Consumption Lounges
The cannabis industry is booming. And while our favorite Sin City may be known for its casinos, shows, and clubs, it will soon be well-known for cannabis lounges. These lounges will serve as warm and inviting places for people to smoke cannabis or enjoy edibles. The extensive rules implemented as part of opening the lounges ensure that the experience will be safe and enjoyable for consumers. These experiences will help inspire a need for similar facilities in other states and cities as more people realize how convenient and beneficial these lounges can be.
Since its legalization, recreational cannabis has become an integral part of the Las Vegas experience. Still, the lack of places to consume the plant has been a headache for tourists looking to partake in the activity. The consumption lounges that are said to open next year will provide tourists with such spaces and hopefully inspire other states to introduce them.
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