Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

All Articles Published: June 2007

June 30, 2007

iPhone Delivers

Posted by Hunter

Well, this has nothing to do with Las Vegas but I am having so much fun with my new iPhone that I decided I had to post something. It is living up to the hype - it is awesome.

June 30, 2007

Weekly Open Topic-June 30

Posted by detroit1051

Last week's topic had 64 replies, so let's start a new one.

Kerkorian's initial interest in acquiring Bellagio and CityCenter certainly helped MGM during the month of June. The RJ summarizes share price changes in June for operators and slot manufacturers. MGM leads the pack.
Kerkorian's bid boosts MGM Mirage

June 27, 2007

MTR Gaming Sells Binion's in Downtown Las Vegas

Posted by Hunter

Binion's, formerly Binion's Horseshoe in Downtown Las Vegas, has reportedly been sold by owner MTR Gaming to TLC Casino Enterprises, the folks that own the Four Queens.

Binion's is a property full of history - once one of the most popular spots in town, it's been heading downhill for years.

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So, there's another story here on the site that was posted recently about Fontana closing... Well, we've learned that the closing is NOT for good, just for the balance of the year. It will be used for private gaming as other parts of the casino are remodeled... Look for Fontana to return in December 2007.

When it DOES re-open, there will no longer be food served due to the genius of the NV Clean Air Act.

I was just going to update the other story but a few other sites picked up on this and I wanted to make sure they got the updated info as well.

So - that's the story and I'm 100% confident in the sourcing on this one.

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June 23, 2007

Weekly Open Topic-June 23

Posted by detroit1051

Brian wrote, "I hope we get a new open topic section this weekend, this one is getting kinda long!"

Excellent idea. I'm sure Hunter won't mind if we start a new one.
I've got a question for you Californians: Do the tribal casinos have Class II or Class III slots? If they're Class II, then they are bingo games where you're playing against others in the casino instead of against the machine.

June 20, 2007

Bellagio Closes Fontana Lounge

Posted by Hunter

I have confirmed reports that Bellagio is closing its Fontana Lounge, a small live music/dancing venue overlooking the lake that's been there since the hotel opened in 1998.

Casinos change amenities all the time but this closing is notable because it offered lounge music and a low-key dance environment for slightly older customers, important as most all nightlife is focused on younger patrons and loud, club music.

MGM Mirage hasn't finalized plans for the space, though previously there have been poker tournaments held there and clearly it could be a prime restaurant spot.

Does anyone know of any good alternatives?

Update: See this story for more:

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June 20, 2007

Kerkorian Withdrawing from CityCenter, Bellagio?

Posted by detroit1051

The 6/20/07 WSJ reports that Kerkorian will withdraw his plans to take over Bellagio and CityCenter. Since the original announcement, MGM's share price is up 37%.
Was this only a ploy by Kerkorian and MGM to get the stock moving? Regardless, imo, MGM is still in play to be taken private.

An announcement may also be made today regarding a joint-venture between MGM and Kerzner Inetrnational to develop a multi-billion dollar casino resort on the 40 acres at the Strip and Sahara.
Subscribers to the WSJ can read the story at:
Kerkorian's MGM Plans in Doubt

June 19, 2007

Boyd Breaks Ground on Echelon Place

Posted by Hunter

Boyd Gaming broke ground on Echelon Place, the complex that will sit where the Stardust did for 50 years.

David's got some good coverage and it's also been all over the 'Net today.

You guys excited about Echelon? After seeing Borgata in AC, I can say that Boyd has it in 'em. Could be great.

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Thanks to Dave Schwartz for allowing us to publish his recent Atlantic City trip report.

The report is after the jump and the photos that go with it are here:

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June 14, 2007

Planning Meeting Agendas: Hard Rock, Caesars

Posted by detroit1051

Expansions at Hard Rock and Caesars Palace are on the agendas for next week's Planning Meetings.
Hard Rock: The plans indicate that the proposed expansion involves the
construction of 6 new high-rise towers to accommodate the additional
2,671 hotel rooms, with 4 of the towers located on the northwest side
of the site.
Hard Rock Expansion

Caesars: This is a request to modify the height of a previously approved high-
rise tower in conjunction with a resort hotel (Caesars Palace). The
tower was originally approved at a height of 295 feet with 1,017
guestrooms with a Tuscan villa design. The new elevations depict a
350 foot high tower with a design that is similar to the existing
Augustus Tower located just east of the proposed towers site.
Caesars Palace Hotel Tower

Station requests time extension on plans for resort at Tropicana and Industrial (Dean Martin Drive):
Station Resort

June 11, 2007

Roger Thomas Among Architectural Digest's 100

Posted by Mike E

Roger Thomas, Executive Vice President of Design for Wynn Design and Development, is among Architectural Digest's 100--a list of some of the world's most influential designers.

AD delves deep into his fascinating life and personal residence:

Also, an exclusive feature on Wynn's six Apartment (Atrium) Villas:

Be sure to view the slideshows for both articles (and what should be the fourth slide in the latter article here).

It's refreshing to read articles such as these that focus first and foremost on interior design and the specific companies Wynn D&D commissions for their custom furnishings.

The Mansion has definitely been dethroned for this level of accommodation. We can only wait and see what Palazzo, CityCenter, and Encore have in store.

June 10, 2007

Weekly Open Topic - June 10, 2007

Posted by detroit1051

This Open Discussion has become so popular that, at Hunter's suggestion, we'll start a new thread for this week.

I'll start with the latest on Israeli developer Yitzhak Tshuva. He has another billionaire partner joining him on the New Frontier property.
Elad Group Has Equal Partner in New Frontier Development

June 7, 2007

June 2007 Las Vegas Strip Development Update

Posted by Hunter

Thanks to mike_ch who is back with another Las Vegas Strip development/construction update.

The photos are here:

Keep reading after the jump!

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I was in town in May for a few days and I got another peak at the plans for Encore, the addition to Wynn Las Vegas currently being constructed just North of the existing tower.

I've written about this in the past but I wanted to see how things had progressed since the last set of plans. Well, not much has changed since the last round, honestly. Since at this point we've already been privy to the high-rise setup - multi-story suites, a new 'tower suites', the service configuration, the most interesting thing is probably the specifics of the casino and garden area. Unfortunately, this is an area still in flux and provided in least detail.

A couple of notes:

* The 'standard' Encore rooms have a similar configuration to those at Wynn Las Vegas, though they are larger.
* The sub-basement level includes another employee dining area, room service kitchen and other back of house facilities. Fortunately they won't have to run room service from the main WLV room service kitchens which would have had potential for cold food and bad service.
* There is additional valet parking under the new garden/casino space.
* There is a lot of cooking capacity, suggesting maybe ~6 new full size dining outlets and a handful of other smaller facilities (i.e. 6 restaurants and maybe 3-4 places like Sugar and Ice or the coffee shop).

I've also got some new documents to review, such as utilities layouts for the new building and if they shed any new light, I'll update this post.

I posted some photos previously but here they are again: My main camera was busted so I had to use the point and shoot. Hopefully next time I can send some photos from my new iPhone (yes, I'll be in line 6/29 - I love Apple more than I love WLV!)

Update: I have been contacted since this ran by multiple sources that indicate the 'garden' plan, as previously reported, is basically out, with the majority of that space being used for gaming and some dining. There is still some floral areas but more along the lines of what we have at WLV now, nothing grand in scope. This is of course, always developing but I've now got this from two sources, people that have proven credible in the past... We'll see!

Also, on the self-parking, we're hearing that a large portion of the new garage will be new self-park.

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June 2, 2007

Weekly Open Topic - Open Discussion

Posted by Hunter

Here's our weekly open discussing topic - talk about whatever you'd like.

For me, we tried to do a podcast last night... I say tried because I had been drinking a little bit and turns out I had been drinking more than just a little bit. It's pretty incomprehensible. I doubt that I'm gonna release it but hey, ya never know. The 'lost episode'.