Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

July 17, 2005

Chicago Tribune Looks at Wynn Las Vegas

Posted by Hunter

Sometimes the blog seems like 'all Wynn all the time'... Well, with the hotel still so new, there's just a lot of news out there.

The Chicago Tribune weighs in on the Strip's newest casino.

Chicago Tribune: Wynn Las Vegas - Where Did The Money Go?

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Read archived comments (15 so far)
July 18, 2005 1:29 AM Posted by Michael

This evening, for the first time, I noticed that the usual classy music I've come to expect from the Fountains of Bellagio was replaced with Elvis music.

At first, like someone who has found that his Maxwell House was replaced with Foldgers Crystals, I thought there must have been some kind of mistake, or perhaps some kind of experiment or special event. I was across the street so at first I blamed it on Barbary Coast, but no, there's actually Elvis blasting outta the lake.

Well, gentlemen, that does it. Good taste is dead.

July 18, 2005 9:23 AM Posted by detroit1051

Michael, I hope the Elvis music isn't permanent. Nothing was better than sitting on the Fontana patio listening to the fountain show music. My first disappointment with Bellagio was when Caramel replaced Allegra Lounge and its great music. I suspect MGM Mirage took some polls that said Bellagio needed to do more to appeal to "everyman."

July 18, 2005 10:51 AM Posted by Mike P.

Hunter, could you perhaps provide a synopsis or non-copyright violating excerpt when you link to registration required articles? I'm not anxious to register with either the NYT or Chicago Tribune.

The wife and I got a chance to check out Wynn's public areas Saturday night. My first impression: Bellagio with a different color scheme. The wife noticed some design touches from the Mirage as well. The restaurants look to be even more overpriced than at Bellagio. In the casino the tables seemed to be doing brisk business, slots not so much.

We're booked for dinner at Tableau later in the week; maybe I'll drop a review on your ratevegas review site.

That reminds me one touch I did like is the separate Tower suite check in, and it seems you can get to your room without trudging through the casino. We'll be trying the hotel in October. For now though I just wonder about all the strange complaints about Bellagio. Elvis music for the fountain show is bad how? He's at least as much emblematic of Vegas as their usual Rat Pack accompaniment.

Yes, this does seem to have turned into the Wynn blog lately. But then, the whole idea of blogging is to write about what interests the blogger, so I guess that's OK.

Commenting from Fabulously hot Las Vegas -

Mike Peck

(every other commenter seems to be named Mike or Michael, so I'll leave my full name)

July 18, 2005 10:56 AM Posted by Hunter

I didn't realize that the Tribune required registration... Yes, we'll include more blurbs from stories, as copyright allows.

Regarding the massive amount of Wynn stuff, I expect that to slow down. I have quite a few articles on the pipeline that don't really have anything to do with Wynn.

July 18, 2005 11:20 AM Posted by Ehrlich

After looking at the Bellagio's website and the songs that are listed for the fountains, ecstasy of gold and viva las vegas (Elvis) have now been added and are the two last songs consecutively found on the music list. The previous song that was last on the list was All that Jazz from the broadway show Chicago.

July 18, 2005 5:20 PM Posted by Mike P.

A quick Bellagio update: they seem to be doing some small scale remodelling in the casino area this summer. Sometime overnight Sunday the shops just off the lobby were drywalled over, and just this afternoon (Monday 18 July) a bank of slots near Circo disappeared in a cocoon of drywall. There's an older, but still new to me, walled off area near the Keno pit, which has disappeared.

Is it normal to wall off areas just to change slot inventory?

Mike Peck

July 18, 2005 7:10 PM Posted by Mike C

I'll follow Mike P's lead and use something a little more identifiable to help distinguish what seems like several of us with the same name here.

I was the one commenting about Bellagio above, and my offense to the Elvis music is that in my mind Elvis represents one thing about Las Vegas, and Bellagio represents something very different. Kind of like comparing Harrah's to Wynn, it doesn't work well because they represent two different kinds of experiences.

Both kinds of Vegas are done over the top and larger than life, but Bellagio has represented that smooth, sophisticated Rat Pack style Vegas over the gaudy, Hawaiian shirt Elvis style Vegas.

To me, going to Bellagio and hearing Elvis is like walking into O'Shea's and seeing the Three Tenors performing in the middle of the room. It doesn't make much sense.

I went in today and noticed they're changing the color scheme a bit from pinks and tans to more gray, silver and brown. The old brassy signage is being replaced more and more with the modern signage from the Spa Tower. They HAVE replaced some of those old dogs of slot machines they used to have with some newer ones, though. But they're still about 3/5ths of the way to making me take my (admittedly meager) gambling to Wynn.

July 18, 2005 7:37 PM Posted by Brian

I agree with Mike P........what's wrong with Elvis being part of the fountain show? The Lake of Dreams at Wynn needs more of, as Detroit put it, an everyman it stands now, the show is too artsy and makes little sense.

And I'll mention again that I'm still waiting for the Wynn show to be audible from the hotel rooms, like the Bellagio show is.

July 18, 2005 7:49 PM Posted by Hunter

I dunno... If it was up to me I would probably not have included stuff like Faith Hill in the fountain line up.

My faves are Sinatra, etc... Some of this other stuff seems to sorta cheapen the majesty of Bellagio.

MGM MIRAGE disagrees but I think that it is that attitude that will slowly move Bellagio away from being special and more towards a classier MGM Grand.

July 19, 2005 12:02 AM Posted by Steve

FYI, those who don't want to register to see the Wynn Las Vegas piece from the Chicago Tribune can find it on my website at

There's no copyright infringement this way. I own my own work.

Steve Friess

July 19, 2005 1:42 PM Posted by detroit1051

Steve, I wonder what your opinion would be had you been a leisure traveler who only visits Las Vegas three or four times a year. I shared my comments on Bellagio and Wynn in this blog the last week of June. Although I called Wynn a work in progress, I grew to appreciate it during my three nights there. That may be partly because since the beginning of 1999, I've only stayed at Bellagio. It was fun to be in a new hotel with new restaurants and a different atmosphere. I'll be interested in my reaction when I return for a second visit in August. I have an idea some of the deficiencies I noticed will be corrected by then.

I did enjoy your article in the Chicago Tribune and will look for your byline on future Las Vegas stories.

July 20, 2005 9:13 AM Posted by Mike P.

Thanks to the author of the Tribune piece for providing a link to his article.

I found another way to get around registration requirements is just to go to Google news and enter an appropriate search term. Both the Tribune and NYT reviews were accessible that way. Another recent review from the Salt Lake Tribune (different review, different corporate entity from the Chicago Trib) also turned up in a search.

Mike Peck

July 24, 2005 8:29 AM Posted by cgriff

To Steve Friess and others; Please, you simply must stop with the innane criticisms about the font used in Wynn's signage.

Yes, Wynn promised that a lot of things would be done differently at his new resort, but there are some 'wheels' that just do not need to be reinvented. And this is one of them!

Was the Bellagio criticized at the time of its opening for using the same signage as seen at Treasure Island and The Mirage? No. Reason: These were all Wynn resorts. If Wynn started the trend of using this font, then he is the person most elligible to continue employing it; even today; and even at Wynn Las Vegas.

By the sound of it, there are enough valid reasons to be critical of Wynn Las Vegas than to have to split hairs about the font used in its signage.

October 6, 2005 2:22 PM Posted by Steve Friess

Hey Vegas lovers...

This is Steve Friess of the Tribune critique of the Wynn Las Vegas. I just wanted to announce that I've now got a weekly one-hour interview podcast on all things Vegas. So far we've had Steve Wynn (throwing a fit at me, no less), George Maloof, Clint Holmes and others on the show.

This week, we'll have the artistic director of Blue Man Group, which moves from the Luxor to Venetian this month. Plus, every week we give away a Vegas-related CD for whoever we draw from the correct answers from our trivia question, and we dispense the TOP SECRET TOURIST TIP OF THE WEEK.

Check out for all the info. Or go to to find all the shows.

Or subscribe via iTunes with this RSS feed:

Steve Friess
Freelance Writer and "Vegas S&M" co-host

February 4, 2007 2:09 PM Posted by Sean

What font does Wynn use for his hotel logo?