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Archive for the ‘Las Vegas’ Category

Resorts World Sentosa in Singapore

Resorts World Sentosa in Singapore

It was just announced that Genting, the parent company for Resorts World properties in Singapore, the Phillipines and New York City (Queens) to name a few, is planning a Resorts World property in Las Vegas at the site of the Echelon property which was never completed. This could mean big things for an already massive worldwide powerhouse, but there are mixed feelings from the Las Vegas community.

There is some fear that a $2 to $7 billion dollar property will add to a market which some say is already over-saturated with hotel rooms. In a recently published article,  by 2016 when the property is slated to open Las Vegas would “need to add at least 800,000 more visitors per year to maintain current hotel occupancy levels.”

resorts world manila

Resorts World Manila

Additionally, the former Sands is undergoing renovations and will open as the new SLS Resort, owned by the Los Angeles based SBE Entertainment company. This will add more hotel rooms and another entertainment option for visitors to Las Vegas.

The combination of these two upcoming openings could pose a problem for existing Strip properties like Caesars Palace, the Venetian/Palazzo, the Wynn/Encore and the Bellagio who count on the high end Asian Baccarat business that they attract from China and the Far East. This is especially true if the Resorts World property does open. Genting is an Asian powerhouse gaming and entertainment company with many high end Asian customers. Last year alone Resorts World Sentosa brought in almost $3 billion in in gaming revenues. That’s just slightly more than all of MGM Resorts Casinos combined made in 2012.

Resorts World New York City

Resorts World New York City

The Sahara of the 60s

The Sahara of the 60s

It’s been all over the news today, SBE Entertainment has secured the last few million ($415 to be exact) it will take to proceed with the full remodel of the Sahara on the Las Vegas Strip. The Sahara is a Las Vegas legend, which just as its predecessors has fallen from grace. It sits on the Northern part of the strip, a portion of the strip that has seen better days. The portion of the Strip that lies between the Wynn/Encore and the Stratosphere is largely a wasteland, with the exception of the Circus Circus and the Riviera. If you drive between the two properties, there is a collection of run down properties, closed facilities or deserted construction projects. It is not a friendly area that you’d want to walk down in the dark, or even in the middle of the day if you’re a young female.

A more recent photo of the Sahara while still in operation

So hearing the news that this part of the Strip hasn’t been forgotten is a welcome tidbit…if it really happens. The Sahara was in operation for 59 years, from 1952 until 2011. Of the pre-1960 Strip properties, only the Tropicana, Flamingo and Riviera remain open. SBE has owned the property since 2007.

A model of the new SLS Las Vegas

A model of the new SLS Las Vegas

The plan includes a 1,620 room boutique hotel-casino which is scheduled to open in late 2014. The question remains whether this plan, which has been talked about and rumored for years now, will happen. There has been much speculation on whether SBE would follow through on the plan, especially after they owned it, and then closed it and it has sat empty for the last nearly two years. However, with thisnews today that SBE has obtained the last of the funding they needed, it seems that this just may happen.  As a longtime resident of Nevada, I take pride in this industry and always continue to hope for the best. This part of the Strip is in great need of a facelift and this Los Angeles based company may be just the one

to complete that task.

In celebration for acheiving AAA Five Diamond status for the third year running, The Venetian Las Vegas and the Palazzo Las Vegas, owned by Las Vegas Sands, are running a “Five Day Five Diamond” promotion through social media. All you have to do to join is follow @VenetianVegas and @PalazzoLasVegas on twitter and throughout the week this week they will be tweeting clues with the hashtag #5day5diamond about where on their properties you can find a “diamond.” Then, you have to snap a photo of yourself with the diamond when you find it and post it to Twitter with the hashtag and the Twitter handles of one of the properties. Prizes include high end gifts like a diamond necklace, spa getaway and free hotel stays at either property.

I think this is a pretty clever promotion. I am loving the use of social media to get cusomers involved. Yesterday, there were a series of clues posted such as, “#5day5diamond Scavenger Hunt – Hint #1 looking for this Diamond might involve water. Hope you don’t get seasick. Rules: http://t.co/wItq1Wy” Yesterday, they included 4 separate clues, and based on the posted picures I saw, the diamond was somewhere along the canal, I believe in the Venetian, on a light post. If I lived in Vegas, I’d probably take a day this week to go scope out the property and try to find the diamond. It’s also a great way to promote the fact that your company just earned such a prestigious award. It gets people through the doors that may not already be venturing there, and it’s a good way to get your name buzzing on Twitter.

Overall, a solid promotion. Who doesn’t love diamonds?

It’s snowing outside in lovely Reno, Nevada, so what better way to spend the evening than blogging about lessons we can learn from Las Vegas. The 90s were categorized in Las Vegas by a building boom. It all started in 1989 with the grand opening of the Mirage. This was followed over the next ten years with the openings of Treasure Island, Luxor, MGM Grand, Stratosphere, Monte Carlo, Bellagio, Venetian, Paris and Mandalay Bay. Steve Wynn was the pioneer of the mega resort in Las Vegas and the period from 1989 until basically the end of 2006 showed tremendous growth in Las Vegas. Housing boomed. Casinos boomed. And with that, construction boomed.

The Great Recession that started in 2007 crashed the entire market in Las Vegas. The crash was widely unexpected and many mega-resorts in Las Vegas were in the works of being created. This is more of what you will see in Las Vegas these days:

Note the cranes. The center photo is of unfinished construction in Las Vegas. You can read on the steel “Sin City Iron Workers Local 433.” There are structures in various states of finish all up and down the strip which include CityCentre, which has only caused MGM heartache since it’s inception, as well as Fontainebleau, and Echelon – neither of which have ever seen their grand openings. The really unfortunate part is that most of these structures that have exposed steel, like the center photo above, will never see the light of day. The steel is weathering due to elements and will likely have to be scrapped at some point.

So, the real question is, could we see this coming for Las Vegas? Perhaps the financial crisis could have been seen; after all the housing bubble was never going to be sustained, but Las Vegas should have seen that it could not just grow and grow and never see a decline in gaming revenues. The gaming industry in Nevada has defied most principles of the business life cycle, and has seen a period of industry growth that has rivaled even the most successful industries. But all industries must see a period of maturity and decline, and we are beginning to see that maturity and decline taking its toll in the face of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.

Suggestions for the survivors?


About Me

This blog is devoted to the gaming industry news and information - keeping you up to date on the happenings in the gaming world. My personal expertise lies in event planning and entertainment in casinos.

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