Vegas News March 29, 2020
Las Vegas is essentially shutdown to slow the spread of coronavirus. You know that by now so I won’t rehash what’s going on. You can find that info in last week’s Vegas News. (Also, refer to the March 15th Vegas News — Mostly CoronaVegas.)
The day to day news is relatively slow while the casinos are closed. However, the casino corporations are still operating and they’re looking forward to possibly opening again soon. We have a few updates on the business side of things as well as information about how the different players clubs will be affected by the shutdown.
MGM Resorts Update
Last week we shared the news that MGM Resorts Internation’s CEO Jim Murren stepped down earlier than anticipated. This week MGM Resorts announced the new acting CEO, Bill Hornbuckle. His first public message above doesn’t address any questions customers might have about M Life Rewards. Thankfully that was included in the FAQ that accompanies the video.
MGM Resorts has suspended Point and Express Comp expirations through September 30. The company will be adjusting how many tier credits are needed for 2020. Lastly, M Life Rewards will try to reschedule offers from the closed period. They will be resending FreePlay, FreeBet, and Slot Dollar offers as well.
MGM Resorts’ target for reopening is April 17th. Of course, all property openings will depend on local governments allowing MGM Resorts to re-open its casino(s).
Caesars Entertainment’s current CEO, Tony Rodio, addressed Caesars customers with updates on the company and Caesars Rewards Loyalty Program. They’re treating the players club rewards similar to how MGM Resorts is. No rewards will expire while properties are closed. The company plans on modifying tier status earning requirements depending on how long properties are closed. Lastly, Caesars will reschedule offers and will refund Seven Stars experience credit redemptions.
Again, wait and see how Caesars will deal with any current and future offers. Scott from Vital Vegas was the first person to point out that Caesars is also taking reservations in Las Vegas for April 17.
A quick scan of the Cosmopolitan’s website shows that the property is taking reservations beginning April 19. The list price for the night is a normal rate of $170.
Cosmo Letter to Guests
In a letter to guests (thanks LG), the Cosmopolitan has a slightly different take on its Identity loyalty club from MGM and Caesars. While things are on hold, customers can see offers online. Expect to see a new batch of offers after the casino has an opening date. Most important in the note is that Identity tier benefits that were scheduled to expire on June 30 are extended to December 28.
Station Casinos Update
According to Station Casinos FAQ on the shutdown, the company says it expects to be closed through April 17. Boarding Pass players cards will remain active. Tier status and Boarding Pass points will remain intact when Station Casinos reopens. The company will have more information on tier status credits and Boarding Pass points expiration in the future. Lastly, all offers will expire but Station Casinos is planning to send out new offers when they have an opening date.
It’s possible that they will begin taking reservations on April 18. However, Scott from Vital Vegas is hearing that Station Casinos will re-open for business on May 1. He hears the same for Boyd Gaming.
Tropicana Sold And Nothing Changes
Remember when Tropicana was going to be the first casino sold in 2020? That feels like a rumor from three years ago at this point. Penn National Gaming finally announced the sale of the Tropicana in a press release about its efforts to help mitigate the financial impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Penn National Gaming (PNG) sold the real estate holdings of Tropicana to Gaming & Leisure Properties (GLPI). The company will continue to operate the casino in a leaseback deal similar to Bellagio, Rio, Mandalay Bay, etc. In return, PNG will receive credit on paying rent on the property. PNG won’t be paying rent for a while.
It’s possible that PNG will also look to sell gaming operations in a separate deal. I’m not sure that will happen. During its last earnings call, PNG said the company was considering a sale of the Tropicana – especially if they could find another home on the Vegas Strip for a Barstool Sportsbook.
This partnership with Barstool is important for PNG as a company moving forward. I think having a presence in Las Vegas for this sportsbook brand is a must. That might force the company to hold onto operations of Tropicana unless another operator steps up to partner with PNG on a Barstool Sportsbook.
Caesars Deal With Eldorado Resorts Still On
There have been lots of questions about how the coronavirus pandemic will affect the Caesars deal with Eldorado Resorts. The latest rumor at many media outlets is that the deal is still on. It’s still possible the deal terms will change due to massively lower stock prices.
I’ve seen different reporting on this almost every day this week so I’m not going to dive too deep into this right now. You can read the latest on the deal here.
Quick Hit(s) – Vegas News
We have one quick hit for ya this week! Well, two if you count the new Las Vegas commercial.
- Construction of Drew Las Vegas is on hold. Read more here.
- What do you think of the new Las Vegas commercial?
Week #1 TravelZork – ZorkCast LIVE!
Also, be sure to join the ZorkCast Group on FaceBook. This is the Facebook group to continue the conversation from the ZorkCast podcast and TravelZork website. Feel free to start a conversation related to anything TravelZork or ZorkCast.
Want direct access to casino news, casino reviews, narratives, loyalty programs and video poker? Visit our casino/Vegas section directly at CasinoZork. 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)