A Closer Look At The Newest Entertainment Venue On The Vegas Strip: The T-Mobile Arena
Last week MGM Resorts and AEG opened the newest entertainment venue in Las Vegas, T-Mobile Arena. The new arena is located behind New York-New York and at the end of The Park which is open to the public on the Vegas Strip. This arena has been 2 years in the making and came with a cost of $375 million to build. Just about everything you could imagine in an arena has been included.
Arenas may not be very exciting at first glance since almost every city has one. However, in this era of new technology and elevated food and beverage programs, T-Mobile Arena offers a lot of things that you probably won’t see in an arena that was built 5, 10 or 20 years ago.
MGM Resorts has taken green building to heart with all new major construction projects for their Las Vegas properties. LEED, short for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is essentially a third-party certification program that has become a nationally accepted organization for design, operation and construction of high-performance green buildings. LEED is your baseline today for having an environmentally sound building.
T-Mobile Arena was built with LEED standards in mind. They used 7,000 tons of recycled steel to create the building and 40% of the other materials were sourced directly from neighboring states. Using local materials cuts down on waste and fuel used from travel. There are LED light fixtures are used throughout the arena which reduces their energy needs by 60%.
Greenscapes, cool roofs and solar-reflective materials strategically deter heat island effects and maintain cooler temperatures. Over time, this should be profitable for MGM Resorts and is also good for the environment.
Technology For 2016 And Beyond
In 2016 free wifi should be a right and not a privilege. T-Mobile Arena addresses this with 550 high-speed Cox wifi access points integrated throughout the arena. This kind of wifi speed and access is a must for any venue in today’s age where every moment is shared via facebook, Instagram, twitter, snapchat and periscope. T-Mobile users should also see faster 4G LTE speed since their name is on the building.
The technology isn’t only inside the arena. As you approach T-Mobile Arena, the first thing you’ll notice is the humongous mesh LED screen facing the Vegas Strip. The 200-foot-long screen can display anything from animated video to live performances. This massive screen is almost the size of a football field! Walking near it at night almost feels like an explosion of light.
Back inside the arena, the technology doesn’t end with free wifi. You’ll notice it when you look around and see a 30-foot screen projecting a performance throughout the venue. In certain areas of T-Mobile Arena, you also can use the network for one-touch ordering from your seat with provided tablets. This is just the tip of the iceberg for technology at T-Mobile Arena.
Elevated Food and Beverage
It’s not enough to just sell hot dogs, popcorn and beer at concerts and sporting events anymore. Guests want and expect a higher quality food and beverage experience than ever before. MGM Resorts took this to heart when building T-Mobile Arena.
The main concourse offers the kind of food you might expect to see an arena but it’s turned up a notch. Instead of the fast food burger that you might find in most arenas, you can experience a slightly more upscale burger from Shake Shack. Your pizza experience has the local touch from Forte Pizza who offer wood-fired New York-style pizzas. This isn’t just a greasy burger and a slice of ‘za.
Customized Concessions takes arena dining to another level with items like hand-carved pork Hoisin Bahn Mi, a made-to-order Ahi Tuna Poke Bar and Club lounges that feature duck fat fries, hand carved sandwiches, artisanal charcuterie and more.
If you think the food options are next level then wait until you hear about the beverage options. Drinks are on a whole other level at T-Mobile Arena. It’s almost too much to detail so I’ll try to keep this concise. There are approximately 100 mixologists located throughout the venue mixing and pouring craft cocktails. Grey Goose, Jack Daniels, Goose Island and others have their own designated bars and lounges. There’s even a Gastro Pub for Club Level guests on the main concourse.
The fanciest lounge at T-Mobile Arena is probably Hyde Lounge, which you might know from its other Las Vegas location at Bellagio. This 18,000-square-foot nightclub is located on the arena’s top floor that extends over the crowd. Hyde Lounge offers a great vantage point for the events as well as a DJ, bottle service and gourmet small plates and entrees. There aren’t many arenas that offer such a high-end experience.
Don’t Sleep On Toshiba Plaza
You’ll find Toshiba Plaza in between The Park and T-Mobile Arena. This area isn’t just a swath of land in between the two spaces. MGM Resorts looks at this as another “fan engagement zone.” Toshiba Plaza has three stages, four 40-foot-towers with LED screens and the best view of T-Mobile Arenas 200-foot-wide mesh LED wall. Toshiba Plaza will mostly be used for concerts before and after events but that’s not all. Toshiba Plaza will be also be used for live broadcasts and unique events like outdoor awards shows. On April 28, Toshiba Plaza will Freddie Awards for the travel loyalty industry.
The Freddie Awards
The Freddie Awards were created in 1988 by InsideFlyer magazine Publisher and Editor, Randy Petersen, to recognize the world’s most outstanding frequent travel programs. Petersen named the awards for Sir Freddie Laker in honor of Laker’s pioneering marketing efforts and competitive spirit. Today, Freddie Award-winning frequent travel programs are the gold standard against which all others are judged, much like Sir Freddie himself.
Laker himself said about the awards, “Seeing my name on the Freddie Awards gives me a great thrill. This whole business excites me so much, I can’t believe Randy thought to name them after me.”
Though Sir Freddie Laker passed away in 2006, his name and his spirit continues to inspire those in the travel industry in the form of the Freddie Awards—he is missed and forever remembered.
This year’s Freddie Awards will be on Thursday April 28th, and will take place at the Toshiba Plaza: the outdoor, park-like venue next to the T-mobile Arena. The Freddie Awards will be among the events it hosts during it’s grand opening in April!