The best news of the week in Las Vegas is that I finally kicked the cold that has been in my system since the Super Bowl! Well, at least it’s the best news to me. The big news is that the Big Blue Monstrosity on the north end of the Vegas Strip has an opening date. Let’s start there because I have even more information today than when the announcement was first made.
Fontainebleau Renamed Will Open In 2020
The Drew (formerly Fontainebleau and Project Blue) will open in late 2020. You can read all about it here. When the news was first released for The Drew we knew that Marriott International would be involved but now we know how involved they will be.
Marriott has purchased an ownership stake in The Drew for $50 million, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. This is actually a tiny investment in The Drew. The Witkoff Group is expected to spend about $1 billion between the original purchase and completion of the building.
The Drew will be a J.W. Marriott and Edition property from Marriott. Specific details on the hotel operations haven’t been revealed just yet. Expect more to come as restaurants and other amenities are announced. I reached out to see if there was any news on the casino operations and gaming but I was told it’s a bit too early. John Unwin, the former CEO of the Cosmopolitan, will oversee the gaming.
The Drew will have a bridge connecting the hotel to the convention center and a partnership with high-end Marriott brands. There’s no doubt convention and business guests are target customers. There will have to be more to entice leisure tourists on vacation. That’s what I’m personally looking forward to learning about.
SLS Not Sold Yet
Just a reminder that SLS Las Vegas hasn’t been sold yet. The deal may be held up as the culinary union seems to have some issues with potential ownership. You can read about it here. The unions usually send out press releases to negotiate jobs.
On a related note, your favorite rumorer, Vital Vegas, is hearing that Alex Meruelo might buy the Lucky Dragon as well as SLS. The issues the union has with Alex Meruelo might affect a deal for Lucky Dragon. We should know more about the future of Lucky Dragon soon as the auction is set for February 22.
The Cromwell And Stratosphere Now Have Charging At All Table Games
We all have mobile devices and like to keep a charge whenever it’s convenient. It looks like 2018 will be the year that Las Vegas casinos upgrade their table games to offer to charge. Earlier this year Palms, Palace Station, Binion’s and Four Queens all started offering USB chargers at table games.
The Cromwell and Stratosphere both announced that all of their tables will offer USB charging. Of course, dealers and pit bosses will probably get cranky if you try to use your mobile phone at the table. You should definitely not take a picture of a dealer while they’re looking right at you.
Caesars To Check Occupied Rooms
All Caesars Entertainment hotels will have someone do security checks of hotel rooms every 24 hours. They will check each room regardless if there’s a “Room Occupied” sign on the door (they’re removing the “Do Not Disturb” signs). The Las Vegas Review-Journal is reporting that these checks will be made by security if the room hasn’t been serviced by housekeeping.
I’m not sure a housekeeper should be responsible for hotel security but that can’t hurt. I fully expect Caesars Entertainment to begin charging a fee to use the safe in all casinos to offset the additional cost. I’m half serious, Caesars Entertainment used to charge a $3 per day safe fee at Bally’s about four years ago. I’m not sure if they still have that fee.
Related: Caesars, NOT Caesar’s Palace
CES To Aria! (Kinda)
Aria officially completed construction on their new meeting and convention space. The new space has an additional 200,000 square feet of technologically advanced, flexible meeting space on four floors. They now have a total of more than 500,000 square feet of convention space.
Aria will host a small segment of the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in the new convention space next January. The bulk of CES will remain at the Las Vegas Convention Center but the programming dedicated to media, advertisement and entertainment will take place at Aria.
You can read about all of the MGM Resorts convention upgrades here.
MGM Resorts International Earnings This Week
MGM Resorts will report earnings this week. Unlike Wynn Resorts, I’m expecting a mundane earnings report. There should be a lot of news about MGM Cotai opening as well as plenty of updates on Park MGM. I’m hoping for something new but don’t expect much.
On a related note, look no further if you love MGM Resorts and missed their investors presentation in January.
In an effort to leave no interesting Vegas News stone unturned we have a section of quick hits. These news items are interesting but I don’t have much more to add beyond their existence. Except for the first quick(ish) hit.
- I woke up and flipped on the local news to see if there was anything interesting happening. As usual, there was nothing major happening around Las Vegas. However, the local ABC affiliate had live helicopter coverage for 30 minutes of a bull roaming the streets of Las Vegas. It was fascinating. I feel blessed (seriously) to live somewhere that this was breaking news. It’s a far cry from local New York City news I would watch when growing up. See and read more about the bull roaming around town at KTNV.
- The D Las Vegas will be the first casino in downtown Las Vegas to have the Fortune Cup horse racing game. It will be on the second floor next to Sigma Derby beginning February 28. You can read our review of the new horse racing game from last year here.
- The CEO of Station Casinos, Frank Fertitta III, is part of a party that is might buying the Carolina Panthers. He might have to sell his stake in Station Casinos if that happens. Read more here.
- A new baseball stadium for the Las Vegas 51’s is breaking ground this week at Downtown Summerlin. Read more here.
- I feel like we’ve given the Palms sign a lot of quick hits. The letters are down. Party. Read more here.
- A lot of people showed up for the first preseason game for the Las Vegas Lights soccer team. Read more here.
- EDC announced the 2018 lineup. Read more here.
- Silverton opened Las Vegas’ first Lightning Link Lounge. They now have 36 slot machines devoted to this game. Read more here.
South Point Renovating All Rooms And Suites
South Point announced that they will be renovating every room and suite in the hotel. The first rooms will be available in May and the first tower will be complete before the year is over. The remaining rooms will receive their update one tower at a time in 2019 and 2020.
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