Nevada, seen by many gamblers as the holy land, is set to become the first US state to open a tourist office on the mainland. Pending approval, the office will open on June 11. The state already has an enviable attraction for visitors from the mainland; officials claim as many as 90 per cent of the 250,000 mainlanders who visit the US each year make a stop in Nevada. 'On average, a tourist from the mainland spends US$5,200 per person per trip,' said Bruce Bommarito, the executive director of the Nevada Commission on Tourism, adding that this figure did not include the cost of travelling to the US or gambling. The state has agreed to play down the gambling aspect of tourism, although the industry has put Nevada cities like Las Vegas on the map. None of the newspaper and magazine adverts Nevada plans will contain any reference to gambling. 'We assured the China National Tourist Administration that we will not promote gambling,' said Karen Chen, Nevada Tourism's representative in Beijing. Mr Bommarito said: 'The mainland government doesn't have a pro-gaming policy so we will not market gambling in China.' Instead, Nevada will publicise its golf courses, shops, restaurants and live entertainment, including putting on more Hong Kong acts and shows. By setting up an office on the mainland, Nevada is increasing the pressure on Macau's casinos though it denies it is trying to lure trade away. 'We have a positive attitude to Macau,' said Mr Bommarito. Macau just whets the appetite for people to come to Las Vegas and try the real thing.' Just getting to Nevada may be mainland tourists' biggest gamble. It is now more difficult than ever to get a US visa.