Peppermill
2707 South Virginia Street
est. 1980
Peppermill
Photo from the Pam Goertler Collection




Mark Englebretson
Grade 2

Jim Rauzy
Grade 2

Jim and Jeanette
Grade 2

Jim and Jeanette
Grade 2

Mark Englebretson
Grade 2

In November 1967 former Lake Tahoe land developers Bill Paganetti and Nate Carsalli opened a cocktail lounge called the Mouse House on Oddie Boulevard. They were already the owners of Topper's Steak House in Reno's Keystone Square. Over the next two years, Paganetti and Carsalli opened two more restaurants known as the Sir Loin Steak Houses. In December 1969 they opened a third Sir Loin Steak House, which later became known as Leonardo's.

Their next major move came in 1971, when Paganetti and Carsalli joined motel owner Fred Hill to construct a new restaurant and lounge on the property of Hill & Son's Motel at 2701 South Virginia Street. The property opened in the spring of 1971 and was known as the Peppermill Restaurant and Lounge.

In May 1980 the Peppermill was approved for 2,200 square feet of gaming space. The casino addition housed 130 slots and four 21 games. The expansion continued in October 1980, giving the property a total of 429 hotel rooms. The Peppermill also added 11,000 square feet of casino space at that time.

The Peppermill has never stopped expanding. More casino space, a convention area, and a buffet restaurant opened in 1983; the first tower, more casino and convention space, an expanded buffet, and the Le Moulin gourmet restaurant opened in 1988. In 1991 another major expansion brought the casino space up to 36,000 square feet and added another parking lot on the north side of the property and another restaurant.

The Peppermill shunned the trend for theme casinos and focused instead on creating a first-class, full-service resort hotel-casino without gimmicks. Peter Wilday, the noted architect, is given much of the credit for the building's beautiful interior and exterior. The customer is truly the king or queen at the Peppermill, and the business's extraordinary treatment of its patrons has had a great deal to do with its success. Phil Bryant, general manager for a time, did a great deal to lead the Peppermill through its expansion years.

Also, as in any successful operation, the leadership that came from owners Bill Paganetti, Nate Carsalli, and the Seeno family-Albert Sr., Albert Jr., and Tom-contributed to the continued growth of the Peppermill.

The Peppermill is still "on the go." On November 10, 1994, the Reno City Council approved more expansion plans for the popular casino. A $100-million project-to be completed by the year 2000-will include twin towers connecting to the west edge of the existing tower, boosting its rooms from 632 to more than 1,400. Plans also include two more parking garages, a swimming pool, more restaurants, and an enlarged casino area.

According to Dwayne Kling