Gambling ship to start daily sailings from Hilton

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KEY WEST, Fla. -- The Rendezvous, a gambling ship based at the Key West Hilton's marina, was slated to inaugurate daily sailings this month.

The vessel is operated by a new concern called Vegas West Casino Cruises, a joint venture of Entertainment Innovations, Fort Lauderdale, and Island Gaming, Miami.

According to a spokeswoman for Vegas West, evening party cruises depart daily at 6:30 p.m. and return at 10:50 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays, 11:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. In addition, there are sailings at 12:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays, returning at 4:30 p.m., and Saturday cruises at 11 a.m. (returning 2 p.m.) and 2:30 p.m. (returning 5:30 p.m.). A Sunday cruise will depart at 11 a.m. and return at 3:30 p.m.

Food and drinks are available separately; for high-stakes gamblers, however, both will be provided free. Advance-purchase tickets for the evening party cruises cost $14.95, $2 more if purchased at the pier. Morning and midday sailings are $9.95 or $12.95 advance purchase, $2 more at the pier.

Poker, craps, roulette, blackjack, a sports book and 72 slot machines are available on the ship's lower level; the upper level has indoor and outdoor dining tables.

Groups of 20 or more qualify for net rates of at least 20% less than published fares, the spokeswoman said. Passengers must be 21 or older, she said, to sail on the Rendezvous.

Vegas West Casino Cruises, Phone: (305) 295-7775
Key West Hilton, Phone: (305) 294-4000

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