Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas! I’m happy to report that the weather in Las Vegas has been so beautiful that I haven’t turned the heat on…yet. It’s a Christmas miracle!
The weather might dip below freezing for the first time this winter, so that could change. Enough about me, let’s talk about Las Vegas and Vegas News!
Park MGM Grand Opening This Week
This is a big week in Las Vegas as the years-long conversion of Monte Carlo to Park MGM is finally complete. Here is the first of many articles on TravelZork about the conversion if you don’t remember the beginning of this journey. The final two venues, Eataly and On The Record, will open by the time you read the next Vegas News post. If you’re in Las Vegas this week, you can visit Park MGM for various Grand Opening ceremonies on December 28.
Related: MGM Resorts announced a transaction with their REIT, MGM Growth Properties, for Park MGM. CDC Gaming Reports has specifics if you’re curious about real estate transactions. Here’s a promo video for the new nightlife venue at Park MGM.
Hard Rock Closing For Virgin Hotel Conversion
Virgin Hotels announced that they purchased the Hard Rock on March 30th. The initial plan was to open in late fall of 2019. In September we learned that they wouldn’t begin work on the transformation until early 2019. The project at that time was supposed to take two years. Well, the beginning of the transformation of the Hard Rock has been pushed back again. Vital Vegas was the first outlet to report that the changeover of the Hard Rock to Virgin Hotel will begin around Labor Day 2019. Unlike Park MGM and Palms this will be a relatively quick renovation. Virgin Hotel is planning on being open less than a year later. Unlike the other casino-resort conversions, they’ll actually close the property to do much of the work. The Hard Rock will close for four months. Employees won’t lose their jobs according to CBS Las Vegas. The new timeline says that Virgin Hotel will be open by the first half of 2020. Not much has changed with the plans but Vital Vegas has a few new tidbits.
Goodbye Total Rewards, Hello Caesars Rewards
In 2019, Total Rewards will be rebranded as Caesars Rewards. There aren’t many changes to the players club besides new cards that you can get at any casino on February 1st, 2019.
- Platinum tier members will receive 1 free night (up to 7 nights) in Las Vegas or Atlantic City for every 5,000 Tier Credits earned in 2019.
- Diamond tier members will *also* receive 2 free nights at Caesars Resort Dubai destination.
Just about everything should remain the same. You can see their FAQ here.
Super Bowl Parties
Super Bowl (AKA Big Game) parties are being announced almost every day now. Follow Vegas Big Game on Facebook if you’re planning on visiting Las Vegas for the Super Bowl. They have a great community that shares party info as it’s released. Many of the members have enjoyed Las Vegas for the Big Game and have lots of insight on previous experiences. Here are a few of the Super Bowl parties announced this week:
- Beer Park and Chateau at Paris Las Vegas will have an outdoor party. Read more here.
- Downtown Las Vegas Events Center (across from The D) will have a huge Super Bowl party with prices starting at $0. Read more here.
- SLS Las Vegas will have at least four viewing options for the Super Bowl. Read more here.
Vdara Club Lounge Coming In 2019
Earlier this year Aria debuted a new level of rooms called the Aria Resort Club Lounge. Access to the lounge is somewhere between $45 and $75 per night. This concept isn’t something new or special for Las Vegas. I’ve paid for lounge access in different cities when I used to travel often. Lounge access with drinks and snacks make for a nice getaway while on vacation if you can swing it. Earlier this week John Morris noticed that Vdara Club Lounge will be opening in 2019. The next level rooms will have lounge access (duh) with different food and beverage service throughout the day, dedicated concierge and priority check-in. Don’t forget that they also use robots to deliver some food and drink. Vdara offers a different Las Vegas experience since there it’s on the Vegas Strip but doesn’t have a casino or many dining options. It’s a stone’s throw from Aria but you’ll have to walk outside for about a minute if you want to access those amenities. Expect to hear more about the Vdara Club Lounge when a press release is sent out in January. Speaking of CityCenter, MGM Resorts International announced a new president and COO. You can read about it here.
The news doesn’t stop in Las Vegas. There’s even more action happening today, tomorrow, next year and beyond. Here are a few more dispatches from Las Vegas.
- I know plenty of people that are looking forward to Tim Burton’s coming to Las Vegas. You can check it out at the Neon Museum from October 15, 2019, to February 15, 2020. Read more here.
- More than 300,000 people are expected to visit Las Vegas on New Year’s Eve. The Vegas Strip will be closed for part of the night. There’s a huge fireworks show at midnight with explosives being shot from MGM Grand, Aria, Planet Hollywood, Caesars Palace, Treasure Island, Venetian, and the Stratosphere. Read and see more here.
- You can read about New Year’s Eve road closures here.
- A fancy new movie theater opened at Palace Station. Since the casino website has no info you can see all the info about food, beverage, luxe seats etc. behind the paywall for the Las Vegas Review-Journal here.
- CG Technology has a new sports betting app. You can download here.
- Curling returns to Las Vegas next year! Read more here.
- Trip Advisor users say that Mon Ami Gabi at Paris Las Vegas is the #2 restaurant in the country. Read more here.
- Oprah’s True Food Kitchen is coming to Las Vegas next year. Read more here.
- More people were in Las Vegas for the National Finals Rodeo this year than last year. Read more here.
- MGM Grand celebrated 25 years on the Vegas Strip. See pictures here.
- Earth Wind and Fire are returning to The Venetian for another limited engagement next year. Read more here.
- Wynn Las Vegas is offering a bunch of special dinners called the Winemaker Series. Read more here.
- The World Series of Poker announced dates for 2019. Read more here.
- This new southern restaurant might make me visit Texas Station for the first time. Read more here.
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