My weekend started with a friend and I enjoying one of my favorite Las Vegas experiences. The day started with Happy Hour lunch at Pizza Rock. We played no-commission Pai Gow poker, blackjack, craps, and slot machines for a few hours at Downtown Grand and returned to Pizza Rock for midnight beers and meatballs at the late night Happy Hour.
I love Pai Gow poker and play often. This was my first time playing EZ-PG. After looking at the house edge on Wizard of Odds I think commission is a better version for the play.
There’s always something new in Las Vegas. We played a different version of Pai Gow poker inside the casino and ran into this neon-lit truck with a dude jammin’ on the drums afterward. I thought it was pretty cool but there weren’t many people looking on. Maybe it was the song selection. On to Vegas News from the past week.
Station Casinos Sets Plan For Palms
Earlier this week Station Casinos detailed their first phase of upgrades to Palms and announced the second phase. You can read all about it at Station Casinos Plan For Palms Much More Than Lipstick On A Pig. I won’t rehash the article but the plans are pretty hefty. The change in everything might be better received if they changed the name. Would probably take away any negative comparisons to the original Palms.
Monte Carlo > Park MGM Debut Schedule And Future Plans
Red Rock Resorts wasn’t the only casino operator to report earnings this week. MGM Resorts International posted third quarter earnings. A few things stood out but the company, again, pointed to Monte Carlo as being a drag on everyone and everything.
- Park MGM Timeline: Construction at Monte Carlo is almost at a peak right now. The property will be rebranded as Park MGM by the end of the first quarter of 2018. You can see the Park MGM preview website now. Most of the construction will be done by this time too. The property will feel like a new resort sometime in the second quarter of 2018.
- Park MGM Profile: The main casino-resort will be known as Park MGM. This property will be ranked slightly above The Mirage and MGM Grand of the MGM Resorts International properties in Las Vegas. The majority of the property will be seen as mid-level to upper mid-level. NoMad will be on par with luxury resorts in Las Vegas in every way.
- Park MGM Financial Expectations: MGM Resorts International expects the return on capital expenditure on the renovations and upgrades at Monte Carlo to be highest they’ve ever had. They’ve said this before but if the conversion meets their expectations we should look for more redevelopment in the future.
Fly Linq Coming To The Linq
Sorry, Mr. Wynn, you won’t have the first zipline on the Vegas Strip when Wynn Paradise Park opens. Caesars Entertainment is planning construction of a zipline at The Linq in 2018. Fly Linq will take off above Vortex and zoom over the outdoor promenade to the High Roller observation wheel.
There’s no opening date set yet because there isn’t a specific construction timeframe yet. Expect to hear more about this in the months ahead. You can read more about Fly Linq here.
Check out the first article for TravelZork by THE INVETERATE GAMBLER
Massive Quick Hits
It was another busy week of Las Vegas news. I don’t have much more commentary to add about the items below but will share where you can find more information.
- The Las Vegas Raiders stadium hasn’t started construction yet but they want to host a Super Bowl, World Cup game(s), NFL Draft, and more. Read more here.
- The headline says it all “AEG Presents and Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Present NICKELBACK FEED THE MACHINE LAS VEGAS.” Happy Sunday! Read more here.
- The Juice got the boot from Cosmopolitan. Read more here.
- A driverless shuttle debuted in downtown Las Vegas. A truck hit the bus on the first day of operation. Read more here.
- Casino.org has a post with 10 vintage Las Vegas videos from YouTube. Watch Vegas videos here.
- The Vegas Golden Knights have an original show on a Facebook. Read more here if you like hockey.
- Traffic to EDC is awful and the music festival will now offer camping packages to reduce hassle traveling. Read more here.
- Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto is hinting that he might open a ramen restaurant. If so, it will probably be at an MGM Resorts property. Read more here.
- Last but not least, Papaya King is officially closing its doors at both Las Vegas stores. Read more here. It has to be difficult to pay the rent by selling only traditional hot dogs. I recently visited the west side location of Dirt Dog and they have a business plan that could work for a hot dog shop. The hot dogs are delicious but they’re a bit expensive. Each fancy hot dog costs $6.25. Add fries and a drink (soda or beer) and your bill is somewhere between $10 and $15. That’s how a hot dog shop makes money in 2017.
REGISTER TODAY! ZorkFest – December 2017 in Atlantic City
So Much Buzz!
Read more about the vision behind this passion project. Also, special thanks to 360Vegas (zork360) (Listen episode 245 – 28 minute mark), Faces and Aces Las Vegas (Listen HERE) (and please consider using Hard-8 promo-code vegasstrong ), Cousin Vito (zorkvito) (Listen episode 57), You Can Bet on That (Listen #139: The Summit 2017) for mentions on their podcasts. Be sure to also check out the kind words by Pizza in Motion about ZorkFest, and recent mentions by Miles to Memories (zorkmtm) and The Gate.(zorkgate)
Be sure to sign up with a Hard-8 promo code to save! Visit our supporters, share you thoughts, suggestions and best travel and casino tips!
Be sure to see Seth’s most recent article for more insight on some of the great learning sessions planned.
Among the sessions on the agenda:
- Crossover of Hotel & Casino Loyalty – Hotels want in on the casino world in a big way and the blend of loyalty programs delivers on that desire
- Sweet Spot Award Redemptions – Knowing which points to use when and where matters a ton when maximizing value
- Behind the Scenes of Casino Marketing – When you know how the system is built it is way easier to optimize and maximize behavior
- Booking Tools & Search Engines – A well-prepared consumer has a lot of resources in their toolbox; these are some of the best for award and revenue alike
- Loving the LCCs (Low Cost Carriers) – There is absolutely a place for the “low-end” products and the net result can be pretty spectacular
- Social Media FTW – When life hands you lemons, tweet up a storm; how to do it right to get things fixed
Want direct access to casino news, casino reviews, narratives, loyalty programs and video poker?
Visit our casino/Vegas section directly at CasinoZork.
Please join the thousands of people who read TravelZork every month! Sign up here for one email per week updates.
(Email is sent weekly on Monday afternoon Eastern Time, and includes our popular weekly Vegas news series) All verified subscribers are entered into a MONTHLY contest to win a $50 eGift card.
As long as you remain subscribed, contest is ongoing and you have a chance to win every month.
TRAVEL DEALS – CRUISES
- 4 Night Bahamas Cruises from $204 on Carnival, only on Cruisedirect.com. $49 Deposits, Plus Up to $500 to Spend On Board!
- 7 Night Caribbean Cruises from $509 on Holland America, only Cruisedirect.com.Up to $1,300 to Spend On Board, Plus SUITES: FREE Drinks & Specialty Dining!
- 7 Night Caribbean Cruises from $1274 on Disney Cruise Line, only on Cruisedirect.com. CruiseDirect Exclusive: Disney Autograph Book, Plus Up to $1,000 to Spend On Board!