in 1953 he won the heart of his best friend. Soon he and Betty Stocker were wed and began their lives together in North Dakota. Five years later...
in 1953 he won the heart of his best friend. Soon he and Betty Stocker were wed and began their lives together in North Dakota. Five years later they welcomed their daughter Kris.
In 1962 Ralph moved his family and Engelstad Construction to Las Vegas where he invested in land. A smart move, of course. Ralph’s contracting background gave him the tools to make a name for himself as one of the largest single landholders in the United States.
Ralph became the owner of the Thunderbird Airport in the 1960’s, eventually selling the facility and surrounding land to Howard Hughes. This hefty transaction with Hughes helped solidify Ralph’s real dream of building and operating a new kind of hotel & casino.
In 1979, the Imperial Palace opened its doors as one of the largest privately owned hotels in the world. Following the success of the IP, Ralph also opened a second location in Biloxi, Mississippi.
In 2002 the Engelstad Family Foundation was formed. Ralph set the bar high and even though we lost him more than a decade ago, Betty and Kris continue to expand upon the work that he began.