Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

May 22, 2006

Mapping Wynn's Encore

Posted by Hunter

We could also call this entry 'Why Hunter Isn't an Artist for a Living'.

Encore at Wynn Las Vegas, the 1,700+ room hotel that will sit next to WLV has broken ground. As is the standard with Wynn projects, it is somewhat shrouded in secrecy.

Other than Wynn's brief remarks about some kind of retractable roof coupled with county filings, we have little to go on.

I created a very basic site sketch with my guess as to how the buildings will be arranged on the property. Please excuse my limited Photoshop skills - I am not a graphic artist (and it shows). To see my rendering, click after the jump.

We know the tower will be similar to Wynn Las Vegas. I'm guessing it will look like the tower at Wynn Macau, with the 'swoosh' going the opposite way. From the sky, this layout position the towers in a vague 'S' layout and when viewed straight on, the two swooshes, combined with negative space, create something that could be called a 'W'.

Based on the county filing, the low-rise building will be up to ten stories, far higher than Wynn Las Vegas. It sounds like they are trying to use the available acreage by building much more dense this time around.

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I'm interested in comments, alternative theories or anything else!

Here's my drawing:


Here is the county planning commission's description of the project:

"The originally approved plans for the resort depicted a resort hotel composed of a 61 story, 656 foot high, 1,745 room resort hotel tower with 647,000 square feet of casino floor area, a 50,029 square foot convention center, and assorted ancillary commercial uses. The revised plans depict a 631 foot high tower with 2,049 rooms and suites, and 275,000 square feet of public areas which is connected to the northern portion of the existing resort. The elevation plans depict that the hotel tower is of a similar architectural style with a tinted bronze glass and beige banding consistent with the design and color scheme of the resort. The tower of the existing resort is located southeast of the proposed tower and was approved at a height of 614 feet. The special street intrusions are for the primary tower and only affect the top floors of the structure. The hotel tower will be on top of low-rise towers that are up to 10 stories and designed with metal roof domes. Behind the main resort tower to the east will be a low-rise building with luxury hotel suites surrounding the proposed pool area with cabana and live entertainment areas. The low-rise building will consist of shopping and restaurant areas providing outside dining, retail spaces, bars, and other ancillary commercial uses. Three access points are depicted from Las Vegas Boulevard South to the main portions of the site as well as the parking garage, which is located east of the tower. The applicant indicates that the existing parking structure known as the Desert Inn parking garage will be demolished at a later date when the proposed parking structure designated for the subject resort is completed."


Read archived comments (41 so far)
May 23, 2006 12:02 AM Posted by mike_ch

I doubt it would be THAT similar to the existing Wynn. Did they not seek (and get) permits from the city that would allow them to have rooms overhanging the ground, so that that building would slant outwards at an angle?

Vegastodayandtomorrow had a silly Photoshop render the author later said was wrong because "according to Wynn, the tower will be turned so that the concave side will face the north strip area." Now, I *did* fall asleep through most of my geometry classes, but doesn't that mean the curvature on your drawing should be switched around?

The one thing I do like about his render over your drawing, though, is the roofline beginning about where Wynn's tops out and continuing upward. That they both peak in the center at about the same height is, to me, less dramatic.

May 23, 2006 8:23 AM Posted by Hunter

I just updated the post with the county's planning commission description (the city doesn't get involved since we're outside the limits).

As far as rooms overhanging the ground and even a convex tower, do we have published sources on those items or are they rumor and conjecture?

Part of my motivation for posting this thread was to gather up the various sources of info from around the Web that others may have seen at one point or another.

If the concave area does face the N. Strip then this is backwards. Can we find a source for that quote?

BTW, the Chamber of Commerce property was purchased by Wynn (officially) in April. They own that corner now.

May 23, 2006 8:26 AM Posted by Hunter

BTW, in case the original story didn't make it clear, I am speculating here based on the small amount of published info I have. I don't have insider information on this.

May 23, 2006 9:07 AM Posted by Andy

Wasn't Encore going to have an attraction out front like: a mountain, special effects lake, or anything like that? I could have sworn I heard something along those lines. I know Wynn Las Vegas' mountain was supposed to be a special effects lake but Wynn wanted to shelter his guests from the Fashion Show Mall cloud and the New Frontier.

May 23, 2006 9:13 AM Posted by Hunter

Yes, we've heard rumblings about a hook of some kind but I don't think that anyone definitively said it would be 'in front'. Given Wynn's revelations regarding designing inside out and focusing on the guest, it could easily be inside the property or outside on the pool side.

May 23, 2006 10:33 AM Posted by mike_ch


Scroll down a bit and you'll see:
"My rendering - May 2006

4/28/06 This rendering is now wrong, according to Wynn, the tower will be turned so that the concave side will face the north strip area

My rendering (top left) is based on three sources; The first is from They state the height of Encore to be 200 Meters, 61 floors. Wynn Las Vegas is 187 Meters. 50 floors. The second source is an old article that mentioned that the additional tower will curve the opposite direction so that together, both towers form an 'S' shape. The third is from the Clark County Comprehensive Planning agenda sheet from 6/25/05 regarding the setback allowances. It seems that the top most floors will overhang the allowed street setback and since this won't affect pedestrian traffic it will be approved. This means that the building will be wider at the top thus my angled north side. The gap between the two towers allows for the existing parking structure. It is possible that the two towers will be closer together if they build over the existing parking garage."

May 23, 2006 10:38 AM Posted by Hunter

Yeah, I saw that but based on the reading of the county filing, do you draw the same conclusions?

May 23, 2006 5:05 PM Posted by mike_ch

Well, I certainly think there will be at least a subtle difference in height. WLV is approximately 614ft from the ground at it's highest point, and with Encore they're describing a 631ft tower sitting "on top of low-rise towers that are up to 10 stories."

Whether that means that the start of the 631ft tower begins at the roof of the 10 story low-rise or at the ground level is up to the interpretation of the reader. However, from the language used, I think it begins on the roof of the shorter tower, which would have a taller profile next to the hotel that's already there.

May 23, 2006 5:09 PM Posted by charlie

encore low rise buildings will extend over parking garage - 10 stories. do you really think steve would leave a bare garage structure front and center of his resorts?

May 23, 2006 5:09 PM Posted by charlie

encore low rise buildings will extend over parking garage - 10 stories. do you really think steve would leave a bare garage structure front and center of his resorts?

May 23, 2006 5:21 PM Posted by mike_ch

Being that this is our thread for playing with MS Paint and predicting the future, here's my handiwork. I don't know if IMG tags are allowed in comments so I'll simply link to it.

In front of WLV is the current buildings and the mountain overlapping it (yeah, you can see the buildings through the mountain, but I needed some scale). The buildings on the Encore side represent the buildings with the domes mentioned above. The line on the Encore tower represents about where I think the hotel rooms will actually stop.

Needless to say, the big "Steve" on the front of the building was just written there as a gag and I don't think he'll actually do that.

May 23, 2006 5:34 PM Posted by Hunter

Actually, I think he might just do that (leave the garage as is).

Clearly Encore was at least in concept phase as WLV was being developed and thus he deliberately put the garage there. Plus, while built under MGM MIRAGE, the Bellagio master plan included the Spa Tower which sits next to a parking garage...

Are you guessing about this overhang or do you have more info on it? The Encore parking plan doesn't mention the closure of the existing garage during construction.

As far as the height goes, it is measured from the ground at a spot near Desert Inn Road. This is specified in one of the supporting letters to the FAA.

May 23, 2006 5:35 PM Posted by Hunter

Either way, I love the ideas flowing.

It will be very interesting to see what ends up being the final design.

May 23, 2006 6:20 PM Posted by charlie

if you go back to the original Bellagio master plans (pre-MGM), in designing the Spa Tower, they poured a foundation slab over the top deck of the parking garage (ala Venezia) and put a park on top of it and rising landscaping from the front to this park. This was really awesome.

The biggest mistake in designing the Spa Tower was that they copied the design of the main tower (villa). A smaller guest "villa" with its own unique design would have been a more interesting visual. "Lake Como City Center"...but the strength of the Bellagio design is in the low rise buildings - how awful would it be if they all looked the same?

May 23, 2006 7:03 PM Posted by Brian Fey

Ok guys, as you all know, there are 2 garages at Wynn, and a third under construction. The low rise one, that houses the Ferrari dealership inventory, and service dept, are staying. There is a build in tunnel in the back 40' of the first floor, that will connect Encore to Wynn on the front side. The back will connect by The Country Club Grill, and Villa's and Convention Hall. The second larger garage on the north of his main lot, I think has to go? I am guessing this will come down before encore opens, and once the third one on Koval is done. Thats right behind the LVS convention center. Here is what I don't understand. I would buy your drawling Hunter, that's kinda what I assumed top view wise, however, look at the Encore pics on my site. There is a outline of what looks as if it could be the curved building. ?

Look at these two pics???'s%20Next%20Great%20Property!!!%20%20Encore!.html

I would not think the building would lay like that, but what else in the would are they doing??? The length is about right, and so is the curvature.

May 23, 2006 7:12 PM Posted by Brian Fey

I don't see a overhang coming. And I will be shocked if Encore or any part of it comes over the low rise parking garage. I don't think that's the plan, but I could be wrong, I was once! :)

May 23, 2006 7:18 PM Posted by Hunter

The parking structure on the North side, the old DI structure, is coming down. That's confirmed in the county filing.

My guess is that it is too early to look for any signs from the site itself but who knows. There were stakes in the ground during the grading of WLV that represented the tower.

I've uploaded some blueprints that show where Encore will connect to Wynn in front, near the theaters. You can also see where the potential third theater will go if they build it (they probably will). The fourth theater was going to go in back between the Broadway Theater and the villas and since Avenue Q is leaving, the fourth theater won't be built. Instead the convention space will be contiguous between the resorts.

The red areas are the connectors to Encore.

May 23, 2006 7:41 PM Posted by charlie

I think Encore is going to face (concave) more SE across the golf course diagonally to where the Chamber of Commerce is rather than face more due East to the Convention Center. It will maximize views on the golf course side, and provide the convex side of the building to view Montreaux (edge nearest Wynn), Echelon (middle of the tower), and straight up the strip (on the north side of the tower).

May 23, 2006 10:36 PM Posted by mike_ch

They're gonna share that current guest parking garage? Ah heck, I was hoping it was temporary. Not that it doesn't seem big enough (I've never had a problem finding the place to park even though it seems small for a property of it's size) but that it's so difficult to access. It forces visitors to drive on the Strip, and no one driving their own car wants to be forced into doing that.

May 23, 2006 10:43 PM Posted by Hunter

Yeah, they are sharing it. They are going to have 1,000 valet spaces underground at Encore but no additional self parking.

The North lot is currently employees and we know they are moving across the street.

May 24, 2006 3:43 AM Posted by Brian Fey

One other thing, you guys are all showing the building the same length as Wynn, and it won't be. I think Wynn is 600' long give or take a little maybe 660' is the figure that sticks in my mind. Encore won't be this long. I also wonder if the curvature will be the same exact radius as Wynn? It could be tighter, or more relaxed. But I don't see the building flaring out as it goes up. Wynn said it would be almost exactly the same, except wider, and taller slightly.

Hunter those plans ??? Where did you get those? Impressive. You have a set of plans for Wynn?

May 24, 2006 6:10 AM Posted by Pikes

Hunter, Where did you get the Wynn blueprints? I would love to score some for myself.

May 24, 2006 8:14 AM Posted by detroit1051

Brian, did you take all the photos at They are great. Thank you very much!

I thought the existing self-park garage was going to be enlarged to accomodate Encore. Did I hear wrong?

May 24, 2006 8:44 AM Posted by Hunter

The old DI self-park garage WAS expanded pre WLV opening but it will be torn down completely once the new parking arrangements over off Sands are available.

According to the filing, no new self-park spots are being added, just underground valet. Actually, the justification for this is kinda funny. They say 'Because Encore is an 'all-suite' hotel, self-parking is not required.' Basically they got permission to piggy-back on WLV's parking.

May 24, 2006 8:47 AM Posted by Hunter

I have all sorts of neat stuff. :-)

I also have the renderings for Bellagio, all through the design process... About 100 images that were used to plan the B, all the different concepts they didn't go with. Interesting stuff. I bartered my way into some cool items, though a lot of this stuff I can't post online... Sometime we'll do a in-person meet-up in Las Vegas and I'll show off my collection of crap.

May 24, 2006 12:56 PM Posted by Brian Fey

Detriot -- Year that's my site, all are photo's I took.

Hunter -- Wow!!! I am jealous. I would love to meet up with you. Now just find some pics of Encore for us!!! :) I hope the enclosed pool is huge, like that of Wynn, if done right, he could make it that large, and enclose it. The enclosed pool, and the "hook" or "feature" is what I am dying to know about. Wynn said he will never not control his view again. So does this mean another mountain is coming???

May 24, 2006 4:12 PM Posted by charlie

the thought has crossed my mind a couple of times that the pool we be on the strip side of Encore - it is the west side. With a 10 story low rise, Wynn could build casino & retail on the bottom floor, and have a Mansion-like set of villas around the 'super-pool' on top. And in typical, Wynn fashion, he could have these villas drop straight down into the casino. In addition, the stucture itself could block any unwanted views.

Also, he is going for a more youthful/party atmosphere with Encore. How much would the celebs/athletes spend to have a have a high-roller villa overlooking the 'super-cool'. Wynn has also mentioned that the pool would serve as a nightclub - "a big sucker". Again, how much would the celebs/athletes spend to have a villa that overlooks/integrates into the club. The whole concept would put the new Palms tower to shame. Then he could use the back for more fairway/lake villas, for the more conservative & guests and business people.

Probably just a crazy idea - but I kind-of like it. I wish Steve would just build something completely random - way out of the box. But it is likely Encore will be another Mirage, TI, Bellagio, Wynn derivative.

May 24, 2006 7:03 PM Posted by Brian Fey

I know the filings said up to 10 story low rise buildings, but I can't see him building tall buildings like that right up to the strip, I don't know. That would be unlike Wynn and unlike his style. And maybe Wynn won't put the pool on the ground, maybe it will be several stories off the ground, on top of other low rise buildings, a pool deck not unlike Venetian or Palazzo, but is able to be covered?

This is my single biggest question for Wynn and Encore....There was room for "Up to" 4 theaters. Spamalot theater has been canceled, and is moving into Ave Q. This allowed him to add more convention space and keep it all together, but no mention has been made of this 4th theater??? Is the 4th or what now would be the 3rd theater gone now? Or is there still room for a 3rd theater, with the new Encore plans, and the addition to Wynn that will help connect them?

So is this concert venue theater still coming, or is that plan gone, and that space being used just for Encore common area and convention space now?

May 24, 2006 7:11 PM Posted by Hunter

As far as the ten story low-rise buildings, I'll admit I was pretty surprised when I first read it - it does seem extreme and very un-Wynn like. We'll see. I hope to have some concrete info for you guys in the not too distant future.

Regarding the theaters, here's what I've heard...

Originally the plan for the combined Encore/WLV was for four theaters. Two of them have been built, the 'Aqua' theater (Le Reve) and the Broadway Theater. They were going to build another theater for Spamalot and it was going to go East of the Broadway theater, where part of Encore's convention area is now going to go. We all know what happened here - 'Q' is leaving and thus Spamalot will go in there and thus the Spamalot theater won't be built.

The other theater is still slated to be built just North of the Aqua theater as part of Encore. It is supposedly going to be setup to handle comedians, small bands, etc... Sorta like the Danny Gans Theater at The Mirage. There's been talk of a permanent headliner of some fame and then using the off-time for other folks, again like the way The Mirage handles Danny Gans.

It is in the Encore budget and Wynn really wants a 'theater district' in his resort complex, interestingly enough, where the two resorts will be joined (at least as far as the most common public entry point - the convention areas will also be joined and provide access).

Everything I have heard and seen indicates that this additional theater will be built. The space is reserved so even if it is boxed out and finished later, that's what that space is going for.

It's funny that Wynn's entertainment offerings have sorta faltered, at least commercially. I personally loved 'Q' and will miss it. Le Reve, while getting more popular, has fallen short of the 'O'-like goals they set for ticket sales. Spamalot will hopefully be a hit. Wynn needs to reset the clock on the entertainment buzz for WLV and hopefully Spamalot will do that... And perhaps a long-term headliner in the other theater.

May 24, 2006 9:12 PM Posted by charlie

two words...

dana carvey


May 25, 2006 2:15 AM Posted by Mike E

I had the pleasure of seeing a small selection of Hunter's "collection of [casino] crap" over lunch one beautiful Santa Barbara day. Definitely interesting.

Charlie, poolside villas are in the plans, actually. I'm predicting they're going to be much like the Fairway accomodations at Wynn--more "modest" villas, but no word yet of course and nothing really mentioning villas in the scope of Wynn, Bellagio, and Mirage. Villas taking advantage of the resorts pool in one way or another aren't completely new though. Check out this old construction photo of WLV:

While I can't say for sure, I'm fairly certain that Villas One and Two (from the top) have a view of the resort pool from the second floor master bedrooms.

As far as Encore's actual pool, I dearly hope the entire complex isn't in a retractable solarium as that would be a complete eye-sore. I'm willing to bet there will be a small, year-round indoor pool with a retractable roof from a selection of several outdoor options. This is a shot in the dark, but have you guys ever heard of the new Monte Carlo Bay Resort in Monaco that opened in October? They have a pool under a solarium that's part of the spa and it flows into the main pool outside. See it here (refresh until the photo slide show starts showing the outdoor areas):

Makes me wonder if Wynn got any ideas from seeing it. I really hope Encore's pool does something similar--it's gorgeous!

May 25, 2006 3:59 AM Posted by Brian Fey

Well thats good, I hope you are right. I saw no mention of this 3rd theater in the Encore data I've seen. As we all know Entertaiment is the key to getting people in the door, and filling the casino at night.

May 25, 2006 6:21 PM Posted by Brian Fey

I just remembered something. I got a Xbox 360, mostly for Project Gotham Racing 3, Las Vegas is in that game. The detail is amazing, of the Strip, in its acuracy. Its almost like they hired a Vegas expert, because that game was in development long ago, yet its very up to date. They show Aladdin already converted to P.H. They show all the ironwork up on Palazzo, and on Wynn, they show the entire Encore Tower, up and completed. Now I don't know how, I could get that on my computer for you guys to see, but Now I wonder if just how accurate it is. Its just like Wynn described, its the same glass color, and has the bands, yet its taller, and curved in a different direction. Interesting....

May 25, 2006 7:36 PM Posted by josh

Yes, I agree, having the pool and entertainment attractions on the Strip side would be stunning.
By saying the low buildings will be 10 stories, does Wynn mean that there will be 10 floors or just 2 or 3 levels totalling 10 stories tall?
I was kind of disappointed by the standard rooms at the Wynn; do you think Encore's room will truly be spetacular, or similar to the Wynn ones?

May 25, 2006 8:22 PM Posted by Hunter

I haven't thrown in PGR3 since I got my XBox but I am going to take a closer look at it now that you mention this.

As far as 'what does 10 stories mean', my guess is that the highest point in the low-rise will be 10 stories, not the entire building.

May 26, 2006 3:45 AM Posted by Brian Fey

Yes I would expect the Encore rooms to be a lot like Wynn's only maybe larger. I liked them, but I don't see them as light years ahead of the competition. Wynn has never really set the standard as far as rooms go. I have to give this award to LVS for Venetian. I though the Wynn rooms lacked in their trim (moldings) somewhat. Crown Molding in the bathroom, amoung other things should have been standard. But I don't look for the Encore rooms to change your life. I know he will have to stick with the flat panels, in both the bath and main room, and I am sure if they are reasonably problem free, he'll have to offer us the automatic window curtains, which is one of my favorite features of the rooms. Once you offer something like that, you can't hardly take it away later.

May 26, 2006 8:57 AM Posted by Hunter

Steve is on the record saying that the rooms at Encore will be bigger. It will be 'all-suite' in the way that the Venetian is - the standard rooms will be large (750 sq ft) and have a separate sitting area, but it will be in the same room.

Of course there will also be suites though he hasn't said if he'll do an 'Encore Tower Suites' or not.

I hope to be able to bring you some more definitive information on the Encore designs soon. I have someone working on it but that's all I can say for now.

May 26, 2006 12:39 PM Posted by Mike E

With a casino half the size of WLV, Encore's take on Tower Suites would probably be the epitome of convenience for the lazy Las Vegas traveler... I get butterflies just thinking about it. There is reason to believe that Encore will have that option since Wynn said he's going even more intimate with Encore.

May 28, 2006 6:36 AM Posted by detroit1051

Steve Wynn in Sunday's LV Sun. Passing mention made to Encore's pool with retractable roof:

May 29, 2006 7:18 PM Posted by Hunter

While I can't totally guarantee it, and I don't know what level of detail yet, I expect to have some *concrete*, unpublished information on Encore in the next two weeks... I don't want to say where it's coming from yet to make sure I don't ruin it but of course I will share whatever I learn with y'all.

May 30, 2006 8:42 AM Posted by Brian Fey

Oh Hunter, Don't tease me like that! :)
I look forward to what you get for us!