Summer is almost over! Have no fear, it’s always sunny in Las Vegas. The 100+ degree temperatures aren’t going anywhere for a few weeks and there’s one more big weekend to party. Labor Day weekend is one of the busiest of the year. There will be entertainment all over town for the long weekend summer send-off.
Labor Day weekend might be the end of summer to you. To me, Labor Day weekend marks the beginning of football season! We’ll have a TravelZork piece on where to watch football soon but here are a few items to get you ready for football season in Las Vegas:
Head off the Vegas Strip if you’re looking for a fun time that involves watching and wagering on football with adult beverages at reasonable prices.
Football Specials – Hot Dogs & Beer
Station Casinos will have $1 beer and $1 hot dogs during football games at their properties. I recommend Red Rock and Green Valley Ranch since they both have similar great sportsbook layouts. GVR also has Pizza Rock. Visit Palace Station if you don’t want to venture too far off the Vegas Strip.
Boyd Gaming will have $3 and $4 beer during football games. The $4 beer list includes Elysian Space Dust IPA which has a nice 8.2% ABV. For comparison, a $3 Bud has a 5% ABV. Might as well get more bang for the buck. I recommend The Orleans, Gold Coast, and The Cal if you’re looking for a Boyd sports book.
Here’s an option if you prefer staying on the Vegas Strip and watching the games outside. You can get your face painted at Beer Park at Paris Las Vegas. Don’t forget there’s an additional 5% fee added to each bill. It may not be a big deal for a single beer but it adds up if you’re spending four hours eating and drinking. Read about the face painting here.
Say Goodbye Hooters Casino + Goodbye SLS
Heads Up Chip Collectors! You only have a few days to get an SLS chip. Hooters is expected to be rebranded by the end of the year so you’ll have a few months to grab a Hooters chip. While we’re at it, the Hard Rock will close for renovations after the Super Bowl is played on February 2, 2020.
SLS Las Vegas will become Sahara this week!
The changeover of SLS to Sahara will happen on August 29th specifically. The next few days are your last chance to get an SLS chip. The renovations and additions to Sahara will continue into 2020.
Nightclub Details – Sahara
Eater has details on a new nightclub that’s being built at Sahara. The new club will be built above the old Foxtail space and look out to the pool. Also, Cleo closes tonight. The space will become a pop-up restaurant called Bella Bistro on September 1. According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, this sounds like a fancy modern Italian-American restaurant.
Some other changes you might have missed at SLS/Sahara, 800 Degrees Pizza is closed and there’s a new Starbucks.
Goodbye Hooters Casino
A couple of weeks in Vegas News after being the rumor of the week here, we have confirmation that Hooters Casino will become Oyo Hotel & Casino Las Vegas.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal says that Paragon Gaming will continue to operate the casino. The $1 blackjack and the William Hill sports book should remain. We should hear more about the changes in the next couple of months.
The Wall Street Journal says the new owners paid just $135 million dollars for Hooters. The property was recently renovated so there shouldn’t be too many renovations. All changes are expected to be done by the end of the year.
The purchase price seems low with the location that’s walking distance to the Excalibur tram to Mandalay Bay which will put guests right near the new football stadium. The new branding could bring a different customer to Hooters/Oyo. When the changeover is complete this might make this a good destination for anyone that wants to stay near the south part of the Vegas Strip.
MGM Resorts International Buys 50% Of Sydell Group
This week MGM Resorts purchased 50% of the Sydell Group. If the name sounds familiar, that’s the company behind NoMad Hotels. Sydell has 16 hotels around the world and operates LINE, Saguaro, and other hotel brands.
This is the first time MGM Resorts is ventured into boutique hotel operations. In part, this is a way for MGM Resorts to attract young customers. A spokesperson for MGM Resorts told the Wall Street Journal (read the non-paywall article at Crain’s) the Sydell purchase is “part of the next evolution of our growth opportunities.”
Larger hotel operators have been acquiring small hotel brands over the past few years. The wonderful Kimpton brand is now part of Intercontinental Hotels which also has Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza brands. The new boutique brands could become feeder properties for MGM Resorts.
Don’t be surprised to see MGM Resorts make another boutique hotel purchase in the future. The company has said they’re looking for real estate acquisitions during recent earnings calls. Maybe they’ll buy another casino but this is another way of expanding the brand.
These younger customers might not be gamblers but they’re accustomed to paying a little more money for a hotel room. There’s also a good chance that these customers will enjoy the fine dining and shows that MGM Resorts available at MGM casinos around the country.
Country Music Quick Hits
A few country music concerts/residencies were announced this week so I thought I’d group them together for the fans.
- Jason Aldean has a few shows at the Park Theater at Park MGM from December 6-8. That’s during the National Finals Rodeo (NFR). Read more here.
- George Strait added three more shows in 2020 to his residency at T-Mobile Arena. Read more here.
- Dwight Yoakam is starting a new residency at the Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas in December. Read more here.
Quick Hits will be all over the place this week. There were a lot of random announcements this week. For example, the second-largest LED screen on the Vegas Strip will be placed at Treasure Island. Who knew?!
You can read about it here. You can reminisce about the Sirens of TI Pirate Show below.
- Life Is Beautiful announced its comedy lineup. Read the press release here.
- The first bar I ever visited for a drink at the Cosmopolitan is getting a makeover. Read about the changes at Vesper here.
- Construction of The Sphere at The Venetian has ballooned to somewhere between $1.2 billion and $1.7 billion. For reference, T-Mobile Arena (same capacity) cost about $375 million to build. Read more here.
- Like Harry Potter but don’t want to travel too far to check out the coffee shop inspired by the book and movie? Well, I have some good news. A new Bad Owl Coffee location will be opening in downtown Vegas later this year. Read more here.
- The Fertitta bros invested more money in Red Rock Resorts. Read more here.
- A computer and video game store is coming to The Linq. Read more here.
- Eater has a bunch of random facts about the Block 16 food hall at Cosmopolitan. Check them out here.
- Tickets for the Tim Burton exhibit at the Neon Museum are on sale now. Read more here.
- Speaking of Tim Burton and the Neon Museum…The Killers are performing a celebration of Burton at Wynn. Read more here.
- The mediocre overpriced Italian restaurant at Red Rock that was replaced by another mediocre overpriced Italian which was replaced by another mediocre overpriced Italian restaurant is returning to Red Rock. Read more here. No word on the next mediocre overpriced Italian restaurant will be opening in this space.
- Happy Place is open at Mandalay Bay. This seems like a fun place to visit if you have kids when visiting Las Vegas. Read the press release here.
- An average slot machine player – not anyone that reads TravelZork – doesn’t know when slots are tight. Read more here.
- Another big convention is coming to Las Vegas. Heads up that hotel rooms might be more expensive than other mid-week dates during this convention. Read more here.
- There’s a sports bar opening at Excalibur. Read more here.
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