The LV Sun gives us a glimpse into CityCenter Casino's server-based slot floor. Will players be apprehensive about a casino's ability to manage the games, denominations, paybacks and players' comp accounts from a central IT office? Or, in this age when everyone, including seniors, are at ease with computers, will the benefits be welcomed? In my opinion, it will be a huge success as long as players don't believe the casino can manage payback with each spin of the reels. This concern can be easily managed with strict controls from gaming regulators and through effective communication strategies by casinos. What does everyone think?
Server- Based Slot Floor At CityCenter
Mike_ch is back with the latest Strip Walk. This time we have a look at Encore at Wynn Las Vegas, Caesars Palace, New York New York and Luxor.
Notes after the jump, photos here:
On the most recent episode of The Strip Podcast, Steve Wynn talks about his ultimate plans for the golf course - two new hotels for a total of 10,000 rooms (including WLV and Encore) and a 1.5 million square foot convention facility.
Clearly, this would put Wynn Resorts in direct competition with the various other convention centers in town, most specifically Las Vegas Sands and their Sands Expo. No specific timeline was given for the development.
For my first stay in a condo-hotel, I picked the Trump International Tower, right off the Strip in Las Vegas. This is a short write up of our experience this past weekend.
Continue after the jump for more...
KLAS-TV has a three part, 30+ minute interview with Steve Wynn on its website. The audio is so poor that I haven't listened to it yet. I'll need headphones, but for Wynnophiles, it might be interesting.
KLAS-TV Interview With Steven Wynn
The Vegas Gang is back and this time we cover the important issue of building safety.
The details, including links to the show and iTunes are here:
Thanks for listening and we'll be back in another two weeks. I think I know what the next show will be about but we haven't totally nailed it down yet.
I really should have posted this earlier as it is a fascinating story.
It seems a gentleman that allegedly helped Adelson's company get into the Macau market believes he was promised more compensation than he has received (nothing so far).
Well, now he's suing the company in a Nevada court. Should prove a very interesting exercise.
The rumors are true! Gans will move to Encore when it opens, leaving The Mirage.
What's funny is that Wynn denied this point blank to Steve Friess in the last interview.
The story says it all - at least some of the doom and gloom is true enough to scale back.
Thanks to Brian and Detroit for pointing this out.
We spoke with 'Winner Takes All' author Christina Binkley a few weeks ago on the Vegas Gang Podcast. Personally, I enjoyed the book and I think that others would as well but Las Vegas freelancer Steve Friess pointed out a good number of, eh, 'issues' with some of the specifics and wrote about them on his blog and in his Las Vegas Weekly column: http://thestrippodcast.blogspot.com/2008/04/my-last-words-on-binkleys-book.html.
It seems Binkley's not backing down and is willing to back up her book. Well, to settle this once and for all I think the two authors should have a Las Vegas trivia show-down, broadcast live on the 'Net, to compete for their honor and to show all of us a good time.
Come on guys, what do you think? You in? I'll make it happen, you just have to show up (virtually).
Updated: Some people have asked me how this would work. Some of that is to be determined but I'm thinking sorta like a 'Vegas Jeopardy' type game with an array of questions on Las Vegas topics with each contestant accumulating points. I'd like to work in some sort of charity angle - still thinking of the best way to do that.
Harrah's Entertainment, the recently gone-private casino behemoth, has decided to change its name - to Caesars Entertainment. Fun.
It may have been a whole year in the works, but it felt like only yesterday that I had booked my flight as I was sitting impatiently at the airport. This was to be my last hoorah with Vegas until Encore's opening in December. Who knows if I'll hold true to that promise, but I planned this trip to the fullest knowing all too well that these rare opportunities don't come around very often.
(More after the jump...)
A Las Vegas-is-gonna-go-bust doom and gloom article from the Times Online in the UK.
The Wall Street Journal follows up on the condo-hotel bubble, and focuses much of the story on Residences at MGM Grand and Trump's new tower. The story should be available without a subscription:
"It's been a very bad investment," said Moji Adekunbi, a 47-year-old engineer, who bought a $550,000 condo-hotel unit in the Signature at the MGM Grand in 2005 in Las Vegas, where one of every four hotel rooms being developed is a condo-hotel unit. Mr. Adekunbi counted on the cash flow from renting out his unit more than covering his $3,000-a-month mortgage payment, leaving him with a tidy profit.
He said the developer's sales staff led him to believe that the hotel would have 94% occupancy and $350-a-night rates, Turns out, he said he is netting only between $400 and $1,800 a month before his mortgage payment."
Condo-Hotel Buyers See Investments Sour As the Market Weakens
Episode #5 of the Vegas Gang has been posted below:
This features Tom Breitling, formerly of the Golden Nugget, talking about his new book. Enjoy!
Steve Friess chats up Steve Wynn for this weeks The Strip Podcast and there is no shortage of great quotes, particularly near the end when he gets into Adelson's claim that at one point he had offered Wynn a job.
I assume the show will be posted sometime Thursday. It's certainly worth a listen, along with a few bits on Encore and the Binkley book, "Winner Takes All".
Thanks to a tip from David McKee comes this story about convention attendees at the Westin Casuarina who, when the convention organizer failed to pay their bill, apparently had their cards charged by the hotel to cover the loss.
If this is true, it is insane. Hopefully we'll hear more on this. The quote from the LVCVA is funny.
Some may recall that before the 're-opening' of the Aladdin as Planet Hollywood, I was quoted in a London paper by writer Steve Friess and gave a less than stellar prognosis for the troubled property. That subsequently lead to an exchange between Friess and Hollywood principal Robert Earl.
Anyway, as I said all along, I have nothing against the property or its operator and here's a story that indicates their strategy is indeed working, pulling PHo back from the abyss that was the Aladdin. For the sake of healthy competition, I hope we see this continue. Congrats to them for hard working paying off it seems.
Just a reminder not to believe basically anything you read today. The Web has a long standing tradition of great April Fool's pranks... We even participated last year with a story that indicated we had been bought by Wynn Resorts.
The funny thing is that sometimes these things sound real enough to get spun into actual news cycles. I had to add a disclaimer on my post which I'm sure says nothing about my perceived bias.
I almost did another prank post this year - I had a few ideas - but they sorta ran out of steam. Fortunately, many of my comrades at other Vegas sites are joining in so there's plenty to go around.
Two important stories on LVS:
Why would Sheldon Adelson make such public comments about MGM, Pansy Ho and Atlantic City?
Sands Chief Questions MGM Mirage's Motives
What is the real story on CFO Rozek's departure from LVS?
Robert P. Rozek resigned from his position as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Las Vegas Sands Corp