The Lotus Hotel and Casino is located in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States of America. While inside it, it seems like time never passes and nobody wants to leave.
It was created by the Lotus-eaters so that anyone entering would never want to leave because of all the addictive games, food (in the case of the movie), and other activities, combined with the unlimited money on plastic cards. The hotel causes those inside never to age, while time goes on at a seemingly accelerated rate outside. Known victims include Darrin, Nico and Bianca di Angelo, as well as Percy Jackson, Annabeth Chase, and Grover Underwood for a short period of time. In the movie, the cause of staying is eating "Lotus Flowers" while in the book, they stay there because of the games.
Percy, Annabeth, and Grover enter the hotel because they are looking for a place to rest. They are offered a nice suite and although Percy senses something is wrong, he goes against his better judgement and they indulge themselves in games. It is only until Percy notices people from all different time periods that he realizes he is being affected by the hotel, and he snaps out of the trance. He grabs Annabeth and Grover and when they leave the hotel they realize that they have been in there for five days.
Bianca and her brother Nico are mentioned to have been to the Lotus Hotel and stayed there for a few decades. This way Hades could still try and make one of his children be the child of prophecy without breaking the pact. Then, the Fury Alecto came and got them out and sent them off to school. Because Hades had them dipped in the River Lethe (the river of forgetfulness), Bianca and Nico couldn't remember anything before their stay. They entered the hotel before World War II.
Nico visits Percy once again shorty after Percy returned to Camp Half-Blood. When Percy asked what he was doing at Mount Othrys, he said he was following a lead on his family and past, causing Percy to remember that Nico had spent about seventy years in the Lotus Hotel and Casino, and he still didn't know who the lawyer was who took Nico and Bianca out of the hotel. Later, Hades revealed that he hid them in the hotel as World War II was a bad time to be a child of Hades and he wanted to keep them out of harm's way until the time was right. When Hades learned of Percy's existence, he took his children from the hotel so one of them could be the child of the Great Prophecy. He also reveals that Alecto was the one that took them from the Lotus Hotel.
Later, when Nico is watching the events that lead to him and his sister being placed in the Lotus Hotel, he sees his mother arguing that she won't raise her children in the Underworld. Hades claims he knows a place in the desert where time stands still referring to the Lotus Hotel. She refuses, leading to her death when Zeus blasted the apartment with lightning. Heartbroken, Hades tells Alecto to dip the children (who he saved) in the River Lethe and placed them in the Lotus Hotel and Casino, where they would be safe.
In the film, instead of them just wanting to be at Lotus Hotel and Casino, Grover, Annabeth, and Percy had to get the last of Persephone's Pearls. Once they had gotten in, a waitress gave them a Lotus Flower and it gave the effect of them never wanting to leave, which resulted in symptoms similar to intoxication. They forgot why they were there and decided to stay there and have fun, as suggested by Annabeth. Finally, Percy realized what was going on when he saw a person playing a game about a movie in the 70's, who said this was the best movie of the year. Percy also heard Poseidon's voice in his head, telling him "Don't eat the flower" while he had a Lotus Flower in his hand and was about to eat it. He got the others to stop eating the Lotus Flowers and come back from their trance. On the way out, they have a big fight with the hotel security, then they grabbed the third pearl and stole a black Maserati which was up for contest, crashed through the front door, and escaped.
Known Hotel "Guests"
- The Lotus Hotel and Casino is likely derived from the myth of the Lotus Tree. In the myth, there was a tribe called the Lotus-eaters, who were addicted to the fruit of the tree. When Odysseus encountered this tribe during one of his travels, some of his men tasted the fruit and never wanted to leave. Odysseus solved this problem by binding them and dragging them back.
- The "time" part of the trap was probably inspired by the fact that there are no windows or clocks in any casino, so visitors have no idea if it's day or night, or how much time has passed in the casino.
- In the film as they are leaving, Grover yells "James Dean, out of the way!" James Dean was an actor in the 1950s and in reality he died in a car accident when he was 24 years old. In the film series however, he apparently got trapped in the casino.
- In the movie, the words "You Will Never Want To Leave" are on the door. This could be seen as a warning, as anyone that eats the lotus flowers will indeed never want to leave the casino.
- As Nico and Bianca were placed in the Lotus Hotel before World War II, it is likely that they were still there when Percy, Annabeth, and Grover stayed at the hotel.
- Despite time supposedly stopping for anyone inside the hotel, Nico and Bianca somehow aged. When Alecto placed them inside, they were much younger than when they were introduced in The Titan's Curse. Alternately they may have been removed from the hotel at some point and aged up before they were introduced.
- The song "Hotel California" by Eagles may have been a source of inspiration for embodiment of the territory of the Lotus-eaters in a hotel.