The National Finals Rodeo (NFR) is over and we’re entering one of the slowest periods in Las Vegas. Before moving here, I used to visit Las Vegas during the weeks leading into Christmas. Hotel occupancy is typically low and prices are cheap. Hotel rooms are often low enough to have a noticeable discount or to upgrade to a higher end property that might normally be too much money for the same budget.
Quiet Las Vegas is a great Las Vegas. It’s still my favorite time to enjoy Las Vegas. Crazy trips to Las Vegas are fun too but the quiet time of the year allows fairly easy access to restaurants, clubs, or shows that might normally be busy or sold out.
News from Las Vegas is sometimes quiet during the slow period too. Businesses sometimes take time away from announcements to focus their big news when more people are paying attention. That might be the case moving forward. However, the past week was chock full of news.
Wynn Buys Alon Land
Wynn Las Vegas confirmed the Vital Vegas scoop from last week that they have purchased the land across the street and next to the Fashion Show Mall. You may be familiar with this land that was formerly the site of the New Frontier casino and was more recently earmarked for Alon Resort.
According to the press release and this article from the Las Vegas Review-Journal, there are no plans to develop the land. It seems as though the land was purchased at such a low price that Mr. Wynn couldn’t pass it up. If there’s any progress with Resorts World, Project Blue (former Fontainebleau), All Net Arena, etc. the company can come up with a plan to expand Wynn Las Vegas or sell the land for a profit. Seems like a sound business decision.
On a related note, it appears construction on Wynn Paradise Park is still on schedule to begin next year. You can read all about the plans here.
Bye Fontainebleau, Hello Project Blue
The big blue monstrosity on the north Vegas Strip, Fontainebleau, was sold in September. You can read about the sale here. Since the purchase, the new owners have been referencing the unfinished casino as “2755 Las Vegas Boulevard South.”
According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal the owners recently hired a construction team to finish the project and have filed new paperwork that says the new working name will be Project Blue. When the casino is sold and finally opens there should be another new name.
The current owner/developer hasn’t announced a start date or an approximate completion date for Project Blue. Expect to hear more about this soon.
Twilight Zone Monster Mini Golf Opens At Bally’s
Sources have told me that there are people who visit Las Vegas and bring children. I witnessed one such family last week at the Umami Burger/William Hill sportsbook at SLS Las Vegas. Dad wanted to place a wager on a game but had 3 small children with him. The ticket writer at the sportsbook informed him that the children couldn’t be at the window with him. He walked them just outside of the sportsbook and placed his wager.
Mom could have been watching the kids while he was betting but I didn’t see her. Moments after the bet was placed I did see the two parents walk the three children through the sportsbook to the Beer Garden outside at Umami Burger.
Anyway, this mini golf course looks cool if you’re into that kind of thing or have children with you when visiting Las Vegas. This short video from KTNV has prices and sweet glowing images of the new Bally’s Twilight Zone Monster Mini Golf.
World Series Of Poker Releases 2018 Schedule
The World Series Of Poker (WSOP) will take place at Rio from May 29 through July 17, 2018. The schedule is different than previous years. The Main Event will not be the final poker event at WSOP. You can see details about the new organization for WSOP here. You can find the schedule with dates and times for all tournaments here.
There’s no cost to attend any of the events at WSOP at Rio. There will be hundreds of poker games in action and it’s a site to see. I’m not sure it’s worth a trip to Las Vegas just to watch people play poker. However, it’s definitely something that is a unique Las Vegas experience that you might want to check out if you’re in the area. You don’t have to be a poker player to appreciate the action.
Lucky Dragon opened its doors just over a year ago. I was lucky enough to snag a preview hotel room and spent a day and night exploring the first new casino to be built from the ground up in Las Vegas since the Cosmopolitan. Looking back my first impressions weren’t good or bad.
However, an American casually dining at Lucky Dragon may have been a preview of what was to come for casino-hotel. Restaurants, casino games, and hotel design are geared towards Asian customers. It appears as though some non-Asian customers don’t feel comfortable being the outsider.
Meanwhile, potential Asian customers are finding better deals at other casinos that may not focus on Asian guests but target a segment of Asian guests. “Lucky Dragon appears to be struggling in Las Vegas” by the Las Vegas Review-Journal seems to confirm some of the rumors about business being slow for the casino.
Maybe they’ll add the craps table or a sports book many of you have been asking me about since the casino opened.
I don’t have too much more insight to offer than a sentence or two for the following Las Vegas news bites. You can follow the links to learn more if you’re interested in any specific items.
- Tiesto will continue his residency at Hakkasan nightclub and Wet Republic dayclub at MGM Grand through 2020. Read more here.
- Gordon Ramsay’s new restaurant at Caesars Palace opens in January. You can win a trip to Las Vegas to meet the chef here.
- Circus 1903 at Paris Las Vegas just closed and there’s already a replacement. INFERNO is the name of the new show at Paris. Read more here.
- The Tropicana continues to add new restaurants. They will open an Asian eatery (This week I learned they’re no longer called restaurants) in 2018. Read more here.
- Shake Shake opening another Las Vegas location this week. Their newest burger joint will open in downtown Las Vegas this week at the Las Vegas North Premium Outlets. Read more here.
- Scott Conant will open an Italian restaurant at Red Rock Casino next year. He makes a delicious short rib and I can’t wait to try it. Read more at the Station Casinos blog.
- Earlier this week I shared insight into and construction pictures from Monte Carlo and Park MGM here. Motley Fool offers a take on the finances of the renovation here. I found this quote to be interesting. “Conservatively, upgrading Monte Carlo to Park MGM could be an increase of $176 million for MGM’s top line.” That’s a good reason to invest in this kind of renovation.
- Las Vegas loves ground breaking ceremonies. The Las Vegas Convention Center will get their expansion rolling in early 2018. Read more here.
- The Auto Collections at The Linq will close on December 30th. Maybe the extra paid parking spaces generate more revenue than rent from the car dealer. Read more here.
- The WNBA team that will play their home games at Mandalay Bay will be called the Las Vegas Aces. You won’t be able to wager on their games at MGM Resorts International properties since they own the team. You can read more here.