Route 66 Casino | Thunder Road Steakhouse and Cantina | Albuquerque, New Mexico
Thunder Road Steakhouse and Cantina is one of several theme-based operations on the premises of the Route 66 Casino. The client's goal was to create a distinct and popular destination within the casino.
Design and finished product highlights
The restaurant takes its name and inspiration from a 1958 movie titled Thunder Road. For a visual effect that would stop Thunder Road customers in their tracks—then invite them to join the experience— I-5 designers combined Southwest décor with high-impact automotive imagery to create a truly unique entertainment experience. Casino buffet design elements included:
• A life-size, bygone-era police car sitting atop a platform high above the bar. When a band is performing, the car
rises up into the ceiling via a mechanical lift, revealing the stage.
• Another dramatic automobile feature: a vintage moonshiner's car that has "crashed" halfway through the wall in
the dining area—anchored safely above patrons, and making them wonder if the driver was sampling while on a
• Vivid, large-format wall mural scenes
• I-beam replica overhangs
• A custom faux candle chandelier
• Brilliant neon signage elements
• A rustic wood-style trellis with custom chandeliers
Production and implementation
The project included themed décor design, manufacturing and implementation. All elements were designed by I-5, and the entire installation was completed with no downtime for the casino.
Client expectations have been exceeded as this visually stunning, signature dining venue continues to attract and entertain guests, generating both high traffic and revenue.