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UNLV Libraries Main Page -> Architecture Studies Library -> Las Vegas Guides and Collections -> Las Vegas Architects and Buildings Database -> Projects

Guardian Angel Cathedral

Photos & Links: Photo 1 Photo 2
336 Cathedral Way
Las Vegas, NV
URL (bibliographic):
Extra Note: Guardian Angel Shrine (1963)
Guardian Angel Cathedral (1976)

336 Cathedral Way
Las Vegas, NV 89109
(702) 735-5241

"The Guardian Angel Cathedral designed by famed architect Paul R. Williams (La Concha Las Vegas and the LAX Theme Building) in 1963 is unique not only for its magnificent gambling theme stain glass windows, mosaics, mural and architectural design, but also in its origin and history.

Back in the 1950s, before Vatican II, there were no Saturday evening or Sunday afternoon masses. So one of the managers at the Stardust and Desert Inn requested that the local diocese offer a 4:30 AM mass for his Catholic "graveyard workers:" the cooks, bartenders, waiters and musicians, closer to the strip. So for awhile mass was held in a lounge at the Royal Nevada Hotel (next door to the Stardust) then it moved to a showroom at the Stardust Hotel after the last show. The other Catholic church across town had literally been built on a dump was eventually razed.

Then in 1961 Las Vegas financial legend and mob friend Moe Dalitz donated land for a new Strip Cathedral. A world class architect was hired to build a church that would hold over 1000 visitors. A gigantic mosaic of the Guardian Angel was designed by Edith Piczek on the front façade. The interior stained glass, mosaics and mural are the work of Isabel Piczek. In 1969 a custom-built, largest and most expensive liturgical organ in the State of Nevada was installed." from (last accessed 5/10/2007)