Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

June 9, 2006

Encore, Palazzo Photos: June 9, '06

Posted by Hunter

I took a few photos today of Encore and Palazzo.

Photos of Encore and Palazzo


Read archived comments (32 so far)
June 9, 2006 7:52 PM Posted by Mike E

Thanks for the pics, detroit! Looks like the roof of the self-park garage has quickly become a prime spot to watch Encore take shape. Doesn't seem like they've done much as that's exactly how I remember it from almost two weeks ago.

Wynn's new VIP lounge looks very plush. It's hard to believe it used to be retail.

Any info on the B Bar renovation?

June 9, 2006 8:35 PM Posted by John

From the looks of the Palazzo construction, some of the rooms on the lower floors will be face to face with the low rise buildings. Is this really going to happen (it wouldn't surprise me with Adelson's penchant for high-density building), but that would be a new low, even for Adelson

By the way, Detroit, great pictures.

P.S.- I can't believe those elevator lobbies at the Wynn Parking Garage.

June 9, 2006 9:08 PM Posted by Nate

Thanks for the pics detroit! Hunter, you're right. It looks like they are literally using every inch of the property to build Palazzo.

June 9, 2006 9:12 PM Posted by Brian Fey

Wow, sweet! I love the pics! There is NO WAY IN HELL Palazzo is opening in Q3 of 2007!!!

Yeah you can quote me on that. If I'am wrong, I'll buy Hunter dinner! :)

June 9, 2006 9:57 PM Posted by Hunter

Thanks Detroit...

My favorite is the 'prison-esque' photo of the parking garage stairwell with the 'Why Steve?' caption. I agree.

June 10, 2006 7:33 AM Posted by detroit1051

"Any info on the B Bar renovation?"

Mike, no one seemed to know what's going in there, but I finally asked a contact in management who said the space will be divided into two parts. The front will be a bar with bartop vp machines, something Wynn has been lacking. The rear area will become a high limit baccarat salon. I told my contact I was disappointed that Wynn didn't have any low key lounges similar to Bellagio's Petrossian.

I told a bartender at Tableau it's too bad the room has never caught on with guests, probably because of its out of the way location. She speculated that the
Tableau chef and restaurant may become part of Encore. It will be interesting to see how Wynn and Encore complement each other and what kind of lounges Encore has.

June 10, 2006 10:35 AM Posted by josh

Is the underground parking garage of the Palazzo shown in the pictures or is it already under the rising structures on either sides of the elevator the way, is that going to be the room tower?
DO you know where the casino will be then, in between the rooms and the mall? or underneath the room tower?

June 10, 2006 10:48 AM Posted by charlie

The Tableau space has always conflicted me...At the same time it's primo space and dead space. On the positive side, it has great pool views, with access to the Tower Suite pools. Plus, it has its own unique feature - "the oval". However, it is hidden...So you need some sort of draw to get people there...But you can't as it would possibly detract from the Tower Suites environment and Baccarat room.

So what do you do?

If secrecy is a death sentence for restaurants in L.V., its a bonus for lounges/clubs. I have always thought the location of Lure was dead wrong. Everyone knew that nothing was happening why go in? If there is a way to route people into the Tableau space from the main casino, you've got something. First, let it be known, that I'm not Mr. Club Guy. But, if managed properly and kept under control, they can be a nice little diversion in L.V. That being said, this space if perfect for a "Lure" type lounge, with its own VIP area "the oval" and with access to the 2 small pools - and there are so many cabanas. I spent a day at the Cherry pool at Red Rock, and let me say, they make money hand over fist - bottle service in the heat??? who could have guessed...And that's at Red Summerlin. I have to say, it was a nice time, with a well behaved crowd, great vibe and great music.

Let's face it...there are too much high-end dining options at Wynn - they tend to overlap. Wynn has been lacking a casual, but nice/good, restaurant...ala FIX and STACK (both of which are outstanding). The Lure space is just absolutely perfect for this. And, it has what FIX and STACK don't, outside dining.

"Food" for thought,


June 10, 2006 1:57 PM Posted by detroit1051

Josh, I get confused by Palazzo, but I believe the elevator core is in the center of the hotel tower. The underground parking is covered by the main floors going up. The artist's rendering at LV Sands corporate site is the only image I've seen.

Charlie, Steve should retain you as a consultant!That's a great idea for Tableau with its pool and patio access IF it doesn't interfere with the Tower Suite lobby.

I had lunch at Country Club Grill an hour ago. The bartender said Encore will have a rooftop restaurant, but he said no other plans have been shared. The chef at CC Grill is also in charge of SW Steakhouse now. The bartender said he is making many improvements to SW. In my opinion, SW has been the weakest restaurant since Wynn opened. I agree there needs to be a casual, high energy restaurant similar to Fix.

Well, back to work.

June 10, 2006 4:35 PM Posted by Hunter

I agree with Brian - Palazzo looks to be behind schedule to me as well.

With regard to the lower floors, often times they will use some or all of that space as offices, since the views can be *horrible*.

Still can't talk details but I'm working on getting you guys the dirt on Encore real soon now.

June 11, 2006 9:54 AM Posted by Brian Fey

Hunter, stop teasing me like that. All this talk now, I really hope you come through! :)

Somebody said something about a roof top place to eat at Encore, now that would really be cool! If the top of Encore is like Wynn, it can be in that upper corner behind the Wynn sign? But of course it will say Encore! :)

June 11, 2006 9:56 AM Posted by Brian Fey

I am probably most curious about the number of places to eat at Encore, and the room and pool details. And of course most of all...."the hook" or "feature"

June 11, 2006 1:14 PM Posted by Hunter

Yeah, at this point I had better deliver. I have high hopes. If for some reason I don't get the info I'm looking for I may be the most disappointed of all. Wish me luck!!

June 11, 2006 5:49 PM Posted by Brian Fey

Good Luck Hunter...

And May The Force Be With You! :)

June 11, 2006 8:18 PM Posted by detroit1051

Since I can't stand to have extra money in my pocket, I decided to not drive to Arizona but drove to Caesars Palace instead. I've never stayed here, but since I'm a Harrah's Diamond Member, I called to see if I could get comped. They said ok, so I drove up to the main valet and came into the lobby. I was greeted by what seemed to be thousands of fannypackers waiting in line to register. I asked where Diamond registration was and wound my way back to the Augustus Tower to register. It's a nice, quiet area with no people in line. I said I had never been here, so I didn't expect accomodations like I get at Wynn and Bellagio, but my only request was that the room NOT connect to another. The rep said I would be on the 30th floor and would have an excellent view of the Bellagio fountains. He said it would be in the Augustus Tower; that's the newest, facing Flamingo.

I can't believe it. It is an excellent room. It's large with a living area, fairly attractive furniture and a bath with a separate shower. Best of all, all of the lamps have three way bulbs, 50-100-150. It's bright enough to read by.

I've added some pics:

When HET added Caesars to Total Rewards, they put in the new Diamond
registration are and a Diamond Lounge which is large and has an
excellent selection of food plus a comfortable sit down bar. Gary
Loveman knows how to get dopes like me to open their wallets.

June 11, 2006 8:59 PM Posted by John

Thanks for even more excellent photos, Detroit.
I wish I could stay in the Augustus tower, but i'm not a Total Rewards member, and it is way to expensive (especially when I'm getting $149 a night for a lakeview at Bellagio) to justify staying there.

Oh well, again, great photos.

June 12, 2006 11:41 AM Posted by Brian Fey

Detriot -- I was looking at you this one...

And just when I thought the Aladdin/PH couldn't get any more ugly...they prove me wrong!!!

June 12, 2006 4:05 PM Posted by josh

Detroit, on the picture with Planet Hollywood on the background, is that blue color the final outer layer?
I agree, the Augustus Tower suites have nice decor and are quite large.

June 12, 2006 5:39 PM Posted by detroit1051

I agree, Brian and Josh. Aladdin/Planet Hollywood can't get any uglier. I don't understand why the lower third of the building is painted such an ugly blue. I should go over to check it out, but I have no interest in Aladdin.

Tomorrow, Red Rock for two nights. I'm looking forward to it.

June 12, 2006 6:25 PM Posted by charlie

Yes the "Blue Man Group" Hotel & Casino just jumped out at me as well. Thought about a comment, but I just can't find the words to describe how ugly it is.

Detroit - spent three fabulous nights at Red Rock...I hope you enjoy as much as I did. Unlike Wynn, RR is the Mecca of walk-up VP...all but 2 restaurants and 2 bars have VP at the bar. VP in the High Limit room bar is $1. You can actually make an evening of "VP Bar Hopping".

June 13, 2006 12:12 AM Posted by Mike E

I actually heard that blue color on the bottom third of the Aladdin is just primer, but it's been that way since March so who knows. This whole conversion (as most of us predicted) isn't looking very promising.

June 13, 2006 7:43 PM Posted by snark


I was at Wynn and Palazzo taking the very same photos on June 9th. You didn't see a gray haired guy standing on the parking garage taking pictures did you. I was in Vegas for the YearlyKos convention at the Riviera. I was gonna submit my pics to the site but they basically replicate yours.

Mike E.,

Agree completely about the Alladin/PH. WOOF! What a disaster that's looking like.

June 13, 2006 8:08 PM Posted by socalduck

I just returned from three nights at the Venetian, and will leave tomorrow for two nights at Wynn. The Venetian gets a lot of criticism in this blog, but I will say that despite the worn condition of the guest rooms and many of the public areas, the service was uniformly good for our entire stay, something every Vegas hotel struggles with on the weekends.

We had dinner at the Country Club Grill on Saturday, and it was outstanding. It was on par with the meal I had at SW last year, which is saying a lot.

June 14, 2006 11:59 PM Posted by MGK

Detroit- loved your pics of Red Rock; how was your experience there (rooms, service, & dining)?

June 15, 2006 7:25 AM Posted by detroit1051

I have mixed thoughts about Red Rock. I'll be writing a few notes when I get home early next week.

June 15, 2006 2:19 PM Posted by Mike E

detroit, did you happen to notice any villas at Red Rock? I heard there are three of them and they all conveniently open out to the pool, but also have their own hot tubs as well.

June 15, 2006 3:05 PM Posted by detroit1051

Mike, I didn't notice the villas, but I'm sure there are some. They are building condos, a la MGM Grand. They'll be on the property as a separate guard-gated property. Prices haven't been set yet, but they'll probably start close to $1 Million. Crazy prices! Station Casinos is planning to build its corporate headquarters on the Red Rock property as well.

June 17, 2006 4:45 PM Posted by detroit1051

Charlie wrote a comment on Red Rock, but for some reason it didn't post. He expanded his comment in an email to me. I will cut and paste it below. When I get home next week, I'll share my comments on Red Rock and all the properties I visited. Here is Charlie's comment:

Comment was little more than confirmation that there are 3 villas directly above the spa level at RR. Each with their own pool and outdoor entertainment area (gas grill, etc. - similar to new GVR tower Villa Suites. There are also some large suites within the tower. The Station Casino's Annual Report has some good pictures of the some the suites and the RR press release decribes each of the major suites.

You may share some of the thoughts as I on RR (or not). Overall I really liked the place. Rooms were very nice - especially the bathrooms, which I thought superior to Wynn. The rooms could be a bit a larger to give you more sense (and actual) space....but they were very functional and the beds/lines were first rate.

I really liked the layout of the casino and its size.
However, it just doesn't have the feel of a top
property - too many chain smoking locals. I think this will be a major issue for RR - how to balance a 850 room high end resort and meet the high
expectations of the customers it seeks, and balance that with the locals crowd. With 850 high-end rooms & suites, they need to establish a hotel customer first operating model. As a guest, it seemed there was nothing I couldn't do in the resort (pool, casino, pool, Cherry pool) that I couldn't do as someone in the general public. If they tighten up there
operations with a hotel guest first model, they may very well drive away some of the locals. But at the same time, they would increase the viability of this 850 room property at the high-end and may also expand the patronage of the higher income local customer (who is gets turned off by the same chain smoking crowd). There choice on this very strategic decision will determine the long-term future of the property and its place in the Vegas hierarchy.

Another subtle, but important change, that needs to made is putting table games in the casino space
between T-Bones and Onyx Bar. I like club music, but even I need a break from the 24/7 bass line emanating from the Lucky Bar. I did think the High Limit room was very well done...great service...and appropriately accessible. Obviously, my thoughts expanded over the original email...feel free to publish...

June 17, 2006 5:12 PM Posted by charlie

please excuse my poor grammar/spelling...there instead of their (twice)

June 21, 2006 9:02 AM Posted by mike

SoCalDuck mentioned Country Club Grill and SW Steakhouse. That reminds me: a bit off-topic, but what exactly happened w/ Chef Klein at SW? Figured if anyone in the world could shed some light, it would be you guys here at Two Way Hard Three....

June 21, 2006 4:18 PM Posted by detroit1051

Mike, I asked a bartender elsewhere in Wynn that question. All I was told was that Steve was disappointed that SW didn't distinguish itself; it was just another steakhouse. The bartender also said David Walzog, Country Club Grill chef was planning "exciting" improvements to SW. I noticed that the Wynn Las Vegas website shows Walzog as SW chef and shows Executive Chef Grant MacPherson's photo at Country Club Grill. My understanding is Walzog will oversee both restaurants until someone else takes over Country Club. Several people have told me they had better steaks at CC than at SW. I've only had breakfast and lunch at CC. It was very good, especially to sit outside in the morning with the 18th hole waterfall in the background. My two dinners at SW were ok, not great.

June 27, 2006 9:32 AM Posted by motoman

Initially after hearing about Klein "leaving," I noticed Walzog's pic on the website at both SW and CC. Maybe the chefs figured the Wynn wasn't big enough for two steak gurus?

Read that they were all at South Beach representing the Wynn back in Feb. and Walzog was promoting his "New American Steakhouse," when Klein was supposed to be the "steak guy." I though Klein's Alsatian touches were meant to distinguish SW and was looking fwd to going there.

However, it certainly speaks well of Walzog that he's been tasked twice now with taking over a restaurant at Wynn. So I'll still look fwd to a dinner at SW soon. Detroit: I've heard others also say CC is great for breakfast and so I'll hit that too, before the golf course view is history.

(I had posted the chef question as "mike," but to avoid confusion I'll go by my email handle, "motoman.")