Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

June 1, 2006

New Frontier/Montreaux

Posted by Hunter

Hail2skins alerted me to this update on plans for the New Frontier property. It appears on the Vegas Today and Tomorrow site.

Phil Ruffin's Montreaux resort


Read archived comments (27 so far)
June 1, 2006 6:52 AM Posted by Brian Fey

Hum...the tower kinda has that Bellagio look sorta. It looks like a cross between Aladdin and Bellagio.

June 1, 2006 7:37 AM Posted by Hunter

Man, that is one ugly building.

It has the lines and contours of the New Frontier it is replacing along with what is obviously a highly Bellagio influenced color scheme.

It's amazing how some people have so much money but so little taste.

June 1, 2006 8:58 AM Posted by Nate

"Swiss-lakefront?" Bellagio was themed after villages on Lake Como, right? Well, the lake borders Switzerland as well. It doesn't sound like Ruffin looked that hard for inspiration. It looks like he blatantly copied off of Bellagio!

June 1, 2006 10:22 AM Posted by eponymous coward

There's this, too...

June 1, 2006 10:27 AM Posted by josh

Did Ruffin's plans include a lake?
Is it just me or does this new resort seem plain boring?
I prefer luxury contemporary or luxury European, but his looks like he is trying to add luxury to a very average interiors.
Do you know if this hotel is aiming for a 4 or 5 star rating?

June 1, 2006 11:21 AM Posted by Brian Fey

Nate Yeah, I agree. And I wondered...Shouldn't a swiss lakefront hotel have some water somewhere?

June 1, 2006 12:44 PM Posted by MGK

The high rise building definitely reminds me of Bellagio�s Spa Tower, however the low rise buildings with domes kind of reminds me of the exteriors of Sunset Station.

June 1, 2006 1:27 PM Posted by devon

that is a really ugly attempt to be a bellagio after taking so much time to make the designs. it has the domes that aladdin has, an horrible attempt to recreate bellagio's tower. (notice the odd roofline and weird window placement) Also I can't see how it is a swiss lakefront town with the domes. the sign seems to resemble a cross of wynn and bellagio and the feris wheel looks out of place. lastly the interior pic of the hallway looks very close to wynn's hallways (at the top of this screen) with the curtains, potted plants, and chandeliers being near perfect copies of wynn. this hotel will be cheaply done as it is to compete with the likes of Paris and Mirage.

June 1, 2006 1:50 PM Posted by detroit1051

I liked the link to the Forbes piece on Paul Steelman. If anyone can make it work, Steelman can, even though it is a limited budget. I had to register (no charge), but it is worthwhile.

June 1, 2006 2:53 PM Posted by Brian

Later in the day the VTT site had a picture of construction underway at City Center, in the area where the main hotel is slated to be located. In the foreground to the right was the Cosmopolitan. Is it just me, or does it seem like there's never any progress made at the Cosmo? At this rate, Encore (slated for 12/08) will probably open its doors before the Cosmo does.

June 1, 2006 3:04 PM Posted by Daniel

Montreux is a huge disappointment. There is no question Ruffin's plan is a completely recycled version of one of Wynn's masterpieces. We are not blind. I pray that somehow the plans change to reflect something fresher.

June 1, 2006 3:33 PM Posted by brianfey

Well, I wouldn't exactly call 1.9 Billion Cheap. But I just see another Aladdin working here. I mean anyway I look at It, I am thrilled to loose the current Frontier, and gain something newer, anything will be better, but this is somewhat disappointing.

Brian, yes I agree, Cosmo, is crawling!!! Encore may just beat them, who knows. I still am yet to grasp how Palazzo is on schedule for a Q3 of 2007 opening though. And this is a date that Aldelson, once again stated just a few weeks ago, and put in print last month in their annual report. I guess we'll find out more this next week at LVS's annual shareholder meeting. If they know they are going to be late, they might at well just warn Wall Street now, cause they don't like suprises!

June 1, 2006 4:08 PM Posted by devon

did anyone notice this? i'm pretty sure this isnt that common.

Ruffin plans to build Montreux on the cheap side, Steelman came up with a plan to use only 85 types of building materials. Every door, wall and piece of molding will be similar throughout.

June 1, 2006 4:25 PM Posted by John

Well, this is definitely a disappointment, in some senses. It looks the people who worked for station when Sunset was built just came over to Montreux, but they wanted to try to mimick Steve Wynn's style as well.

As to Cosmo, you'd think they would have started on the subterranean parking garage by now.

June 1, 2006 4:55 PM Posted by Hunter

I think Steelman is a good architect (though I think DeRuyter Butler and Joel Bergman are better for casinos) but this thing looks like a design by committee nightmare.

I don't see any singular vision or continuity of design. It's like they had a checklist of stuff and just kept adding until all the pieces were there.

June 1, 2006 5:15 PM Posted by detroit1051

"I guess we'll find out more this next week at LVS's annual shareholder meeting."

Brian, will you attend? I had already scheduled my flight to Vegas before I knew the date, and I can't change it now. If you go, we'd be interested in your report. Thanks.

June 1, 2006 7:46 PM Posted by brianfey

No, I am not going. I wish I was,and I could. But I shouldn't. I would love to see MGM, LVS, WYNN, and HET, all hold their meetings in the same week, then I would just come in, and hit them all at once. The only one I own enough to really truly justify going to is Wynn. But I hope someone covers the LVS meeting, on the web, be a live feed, or just a verbal description of what takes place. I have to admit, I like hearing about Macau, and I know that's where the money is, but I just don't see myself going there too often, maybe once every 10 years or so. I would like to visit it once the Cotai Strip is close to or done. What I am most interested in personally is Vegas. I can't wait to hear what they have to say about Palazzo. They are going to need a act of god to get that place done on time! :)

June 2, 2006 12:35 PM Posted by Nate

From what I read at, the Venetian changed its opening dates several times. Also, they had to send guests to other hotels because they overbooked! I hope Adelson has learned from his mistakes and that history won't repeat itself with the Palazzo. On another note, I had a funny dream last night. I was walking along the strip and came up to the Venetian. It looked like it was slanting like the Tower of Pisa. I pushed it with my own hand the and the hotel tower started to wobble! haha, well I thought it was funny.

June 2, 2006 2:10 PM Posted by devon

in today's issue of forbes, the article goes into much more detail and includes 7 pictures and a floorplan. the casino shots gaudy and look nothing like the swiss waterfront. where is the swiss part going to be thrown in? it also shows a very ugly garage and the layout is very seperate with everything in one spot. it's not mixed at all and the dining areas look almost like one big food court will be there. Ruffin is also planning on a 15% return. (wynn's is 12%)Also a lot of the things that are key aspects of this project are already at wynn such as bright areas, short distance walks, and the red and gold color scheme. overall it looks very choppy and cheep for a hotel more expensive than the great bellagio.

June 2, 2006 2:11 PM Posted by devon

also if anyone has any questions about the pictures feel free to ask

June 2, 2006 4:38 PM Posted by brianfey

Yeah, the first night Venetian was open, only 200 rooms were occupied, that's all that were ready, and all they were allowed to occupy due to fire safety problems. It was a mess. Only a fraction of the Canal Shops were done and open. This is only place Wynn is amazing, his places open done, and 100% finished and ready. He's a pro!

June 2, 2006 4:53 PM Posted by socalduck

Two parts Bellagio, one part Venetian, one part Aladdin. Certainly no new ideas. The curtain wall on the first 15 floors looks almost exactly like the Venetian tower.

I'm not sure what Swiss lake front he drew inspiration from. Certainly not from any part of Switzerland I ever saw. What a disappointment.

June 2, 2006 8:30 PM Posted by Mike E

Nate, that wasn't a dream. Give it a few years.


June 3, 2006 2:28 PM Posted by Doug

The design for the outside of the hotel is so similiar to Bellagio, that I would think MGMMirage would be ableto, and would want to sue Ruffin for copying the design.

June 20, 2006 11:16 AM Posted by detroit1051

2Way Hard3 is famous! Here's a link to the LV Business Press which is a good source for Vegas and gaming information:

June 29, 2006 11:38 AM Posted by Krunch

Okay...who's the prankster. I just looked at the design photo of the Montreax and could tell someone spliced pictures of the Alladin and Bellagio together.

Can someone give me the link to the real future Montreaux design plan?

July 18, 2006 6:53 PM Posted by charlie

My intuition tells me the "press released" Montreaux photos are 'bait and switch'. Given his most recent comments and his trend in projects, expect a modern but warm design for Montreaux.