Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

January 22, 2009

Open Topic Discussion - January 22nd, 2009

Posted by Hunter

Throwing open another open topic but I got this little nugget to kick around from reader Jeff in OKC:

"Is Bellagio cursed? I don't know of any curse, or any Indian burial grounds, etc., but, I think there's some bad mojo at the Southwest corner of Flamingo and Las Vegas Boulevard. Since the Dunes was built there in the 50's, all kinds of unusual problems have plagued the property. Design and construction problems abounded there in the 60's and 70's. But ownership seems to be the biggest victim of strange things there. From legendary mob control, to the Japanese financial collapse that led to Steve Wynn getting the land. Spectacularly, for our purposes, Steve Wynn built palatial offices for Mirage Resorts, which he had to give up when he got in a cash bind and had to sell out in 2000. I understand MGM moved their HQ to Bellagio after the buyout, and Terry Lanni took over the same office. Lanni, as well, suffered an equally amazing fall from grace in just a few days during November, 2008. If I were Jim Murren, I think I'd move HQ back to the MGM Grand. Any thoughts?"


Read archived comments (69 so far)
January 22, 2009 11:43 PM Posted by Jeff Simpson

Amusing thought from Jeff in OKC. I know it's tongue in cheek, but I'll disagree.

First, Kerkorian bought Wynn out. It's not like Mirage Resorts wouldn't have survived. And while there preparing to hand over the company to MGM Grand, Wynn bought the Desert Inn, one of his most spectacularly successful deals. And it is hard to say he was cursed given his current plum perch and record of recent success.

Second, Lanni's tenure while his offices were at Bellagio was successful for seven out of eight years. Not until 2008 did he and MGM Mirage run into trouble. Sure, CityCenter wasn't fully financed (building costs underestimated, condo sales not nearly as speedy as planned) and the company's stock tanked along with almost every operator in the sector. But for almost all of Lanni's tenure he ran the company superbly, developed a great team of executives, reinvested in and kept up to date an impressive array of resorts and got billions out of Dubal when the market was at its peak. The resume flap that accompanied his exit was unfortunate, but no serious casino industry player would question his talent and the lion's share of his performance. I am a major fan of Lanni and his record of accomplishment.

So although the last two occupants of Bellagio's top executive office left in less than ideal circumstances, their legacies are secure. Sign me up for a curse that would end up with Wynn's 200 acres on the Strip and the cities best two resorts or with Lanni's record of achievement.

January 23, 2009 3:15 AM Posted by Doug

I don't know about moving offices (They'll probably put them at City Center at some point anyway), but I do know Bellagio is going to have trouble getting their usual 'big crowd' of British guests. The UK is officially in recession and the British Pound just hit 1.35 against the US dollar.

I don't think I've ever been in Bellagio when I haven't seen a lot of British guests - It's their favorite Las Vegas hotel.

side note - I think I've gotten a 'free room' offer this week from every hotel I've ever stayed at in Las Vegas -including Bellagio.

January 23, 2009 5:42 AM Posted by detroit1051

Here's a psychological boost for MGM. Mobil awarded Skylofts 5-Stars. Mike E, is it a 5-Star property?

January 23, 2009 1:30 PM Posted by Mike E

Detroit, based on my first stay, I'd say it was without question a five-star experience--probably the best hotel service I've ever had. My next two stays were only okay though and once I got passed the novelty of the butler that I never used, I realized I've been treated better at Wynn Tower Suites.

There are certain criteria that have to be met to qualify for the Mobil 5-star, one of which is to have two restaurants on site and I believe your own pool. Obviously, Wynn stretched this rule a bit by incorporating Wing Lei and Alex along with Tableau, but I have no idea how Skylofts got around these requirements. This does, however, confirm to me that Encore Tower Suites qualifies and will without question receive the 5-star once operations hit their stride.

January 23, 2009 4:02 PM Posted by Tom M.

Does anybody have a video of the changes at Switch yet?

January 23, 2009 4:05 PM Posted by Hunter

I took a video from inside the restaurant - not all that great but gives you an idea of what it looks like.

I've just been trying to find the time to edit it a bit before I post it.

January 23, 2009 6:42 PM Posted by detroit1051

Bellagio sent me an email survey today, asking why I haven't attended slot tournaments recently. It was very comprehensive, and when it asked what casinos I preferred, I replied Bellagio and Wynn. The next question asked me to write the reasons I like Wynn/Encore. When I finished, I was linked to Bellagio's slot page.
All in all, it made me want to make a return trip to Bellagio. Its website is much more complete and user-friendly than it used to be.

Dear Detroit1051,
We regret that you were unable to join us for our recent Pigskin Payoff $125,000 Slot Tournament.
At Bellagio, one of our goals is to continually improve our slot tournaments and events to ensure that our customers experience a most enjoyable time. Please take a few brief moments to assists us by answering some questions regarding the reasons for your absence from the recent slot event. The comments you provide are strictly confidential.
Thank you for taking the time in completing this survey. We look forward to your future visit to Bellagio!
Warm regards,
Bellagio Slot Marketing Department

January 23, 2009 7:52 PM Posted by mike_ch

It seems to me that a Skyloft guest is usually looking for something different than a TS guest. If I were staying at Skylofts, I'd practically just live in my room, hitting up the free movies and seeing whatever else I can swing out of them. I'd go downstairs to use the pool, if I was a pool person (I'm not.)

It just seems to me that if you have the budget for Skylofts and you plan to gamble, why bother? The appeal is that it's practically a boutique hotel, with the drawback that you've lost a fortune just booking the room. To go downstairs and lose another fortune at tables just defeats the point.

January 23, 2009 9:20 PM Posted by Tom M.

I was just browsing thru the planet ho website and I saw this little blurb down near the bottom of a room discription:
Resort Charge of $4.99 per night (plus tax) includes:

Self parking
Free local and 1-800 calls
Daily newspaper delivered to your room
2 Complimentary Waters
Resort Coupon Book with over $3000 in value

I have not been to Vegas in over a year, but I don't recall seeing this kind of charge before. Is this typical now?

January 23, 2009 9:23 PM Posted by Hunter

Becoming more typical,yes... but at least P-Ho is giving customers something for it.

Other places are just charging it with zero benefit.

January 24, 2009 12:15 AM Posted by John

There's Youtube video of Switch.

January 24, 2009 8:31 AM Posted by Hunter

I dunno Mike, I'm pretty sure their average casino guest would disagree with that - for the hardcore gamblers often times the nice room is a status symbol but they really don't care about much more than their time at the tables. The formerly ghetto state of Macau's casinos are another example of this.

January 24, 2009 9:51 AM Posted by Jason Robar

Apparently Excalibur is also charging a resort fee now. Here's what you get for the $5/day:

-Free access to the Fitness Center;
-Free local and 800-number calls Domestic long distance phone call rates of $0.10 per minute;
-Two Free Drinks (well drinks, draft beer or a $5 credit toward any other beverage) per room per stay; and
-Two free Fantasy Faire Midway Games per room per stay.

January 24, 2009 10:13 AM Posted by Mike P.


We've only stayed at the Skylofts once, a couple years ago. The service and amenities there were in a completely different category from anything else we've experienced in Vegas. The only places I've had comparable service have been in resorts and boutique hotels in African and Asian countries with cheap labor where they can afford to have people waiting on you 24 hours a day.

I didn't think the Skylofts qualified to be rated by Mobil, but yeah, if their service standards have held up it definitely deserves 5 stars.

January 24, 2009 10:16 PM Posted by Phil

Does the new volcano actually have water going down it when its not erupting (during the day)? I've seen some videos and pictures and can't seem to find a shot that shows this. If it doesn't, does it come off as an ugly fake rock in the daytime?

January 24, 2009 10:35 PM Posted by mike_ch


I thought the point of SkyLofts is that the rooms aren't filled with hardcore gamblers? It's what hardcore gamblers get comped, and thus feel less inclined to spend time in.

If I was staying in a Skyloft for $600+, you bet I wouldn't spend much time in the casino. I can do that any day, so I'd want to mooch off all those amenities I've paid for.

January 24, 2009 10:50 PM Posted by mike_ch

Phil: It's pretty much the same deal as it always was until showtime. Water pours down a network of waterfalls instead of just raining down the whole face. It's a bit like a reduced size version of the Wynn Rock just up the street.

January 25, 2009 8:25 AM Posted by RoachClipCharly

MGM should move their HQ to CircusCircus.

January 25, 2009 10:51 AM Posted by Hunter

Mike: I think part of the inspiration was to have a place that non-gamblers would want to stay in Las Vegas but I believe the reality of it is that it's a high end amenity for a reasonably high-end casino and thus is likely filled with gamblin' fools most of the time.

January 25, 2009 11:17 AM Posted by mike_ch

I suppose. I thought this kind of customer might exist since the last podcast had a minute or two about non-gaming customers and why they really put the screws to Harrah's business model. That and the whole nightclub audience, which is at least as fiscally wasteful as gambling without any chance of return. :)

January 25, 2009 12:54 PM Posted by Andrew H

No one has made mention of the Steve Friess interview with Phil Ruffin. It's typical good Steve stuff.

Highlights include;

Mystere goes on until 2016.
Deal closes 4/1/09 (hopefully).
New out door café on the strip.
Would never buy a Harrah's resort because of Total Rewards.
And a $171,953,438 tax check paid for the New Frontier hotel deal.

The exchange about how a Harrah's customer is not loyal to a Casino, but loyal to Total Rewards is interesting, and a great open topic discussion starter.

January 25, 2009 1:45 PM Posted by Jeff in OKC

I agree, Andrew, it was an excellent interview. One item I especially wanted to know what others thought is where near the end of the interview, Ruffin infers another Casino deal, by him, is very near. Since he said near the beginning of the interview that he had no interest in another Strip buy, I wonder where Ruffin could be talking about. Any ideas?

January 25, 2009 1:55 PM Posted by Mike P.

Hunter and Mike: We gamble some, but we're dedicated low rollers who'd never get comped into Skylofts level accommodations. There is a sliver of the Vegas-going market that doesn't mind paying for high end suites. Well, we didn't mind paying once, during the week, in a slow August. Most of the time their rates have been out of our price range.

January 26, 2009 12:43 PM Posted by G

On a different note...

Rumor going around the Venetian from multiple sources, (including management) is that they are considering closing the Venezia Tower and mothballing it until the economy comes back. Interesting idea. Nobody would really notice the closure because of the secludedness of the tower. Only problem would be Bouchon. No foot traffic and guests would almost mean the demise of this fantastic restaurant. I assume they could save a ton of money by the closure. What do you think?

January 26, 2009 1:11 PM Posted by Brian Fey

They could give them free rent or something, their name is good enough, maybe they'd make it. I don't know, besides that, it does make sense. They still got 6000 rooms to fill. On the other hand, maybe if you give them away for free, you can still make enough in the casino to cover the cost of the tower, and still at least break even, or even make money? Besides utilities, and housekeeping, not sure what else you really would save, off the top of my head. I assume that can't be much in the scheme of things for them. For some of their bigger conventions, they should have no problem filling all 7000 rooms, that's their whole selling point.

January 26, 2009 2:06 PM Posted by LeoNYC

I just saw a video on youtube showing a salon suite at Encore Las Vegas. It looks bigger than the one at Wynn Las Vegas, but I still preffer the decor of the salon suite at Wynn Las Vegas. The carpet looks better and the bathroom looks bigger at Wynn. I still think the Tower Suites with its private pools, "private" restaurant, and its location seclude from the casino are the best Vegas has to offer. Encore is a beautiful property but Wynn still my favorite. I'd love to hear your opinions, especially from MikeE.

January 26, 2009 8:00 PM Posted by Mark D

Rumor is that the Mirage volcano is shut down thru mid February for repairs or adjustments or something.

January 26, 2009 11:09 PM Posted by Mike E

Leo, it's hard to play favorites right now. I've stayed at Encore once and Wynn eleven times--no way can I declare Encore the victor until I give them a few more stays and see how it holds up over the course of a few years.

Some things that, at least for me, are better at Encore:

-The standard guest rooms of course. I've even seen them cheaper than WLV on a few nights which makes choosing between the two a no-brainer.

-The overall color palette, especially in the standard guest rooms. I still can't get over the hideous burnt apricot of WLV's Resort side.

-The casino. As many have said, Wynn looks dark and dare I say, dated in comparison. Love the chambers at Encore, too and the vibe is top notch.

-The spa. Superlatives don't suffice.

-The bars. This one is close, but as much as I love Parasol Up, I can't get over Eastside.

-The Tower Suites. Maybe it was an opening day thing, but Encore Tower Suites service really blew me away. The staff to guest ratio is far greater. While it's not as isolated and lacks its own pool, the area is more exclusive and gets less foot traffic than WLV's.

WLV's strengths over Encore:

-Tableau, Country Club, Alex, et al. I specifically mentioned those three because they stand out above and beyond. I can't do a trip without lunch at Country Club.

-Suite color schemes. Encore has no color schemes for their suites while WLV has three. The Parlors at Encore are nice and large, but they don't stand out above the standard rooms and I still prefer the ones at WLV. I like the Encore Salon's color scheme, but others I was with that saw it didn't at all.

-Fairway villas. They'll be even better once the lake is completed. Not that it applies to me, but WLV still has the top accommodations with their six premium villas as well.

-More prestigious stores at WLV and in a nicer Esplanade, too.

-Places like Zoozacrackers, Sugar and Ice, and the cafe next to the Drugstore where you can grab a bite to eat for under $20. Encore only has the Lobby Bar to serve this need.

As far as the pools and nightclubs go, I won't know until summer. Encore's cabanas look spectacular though.

Wow, writing that took longer than I thought, but it only confirms that WLV and Encore complement each other exceptionally well.

January 27, 2009 10:12 AM Posted by Mike P.


There's already been one restaurant closure at Palazzo (Mainland), and more are rumored to be on the way. I'd imagine Bouchon could make a quick move and be better off for it than they are now.

Brian, LVS is giving rooms away as fast as they can. I get about 3 offers a week in the mail, and a few more by email. If they're going to mothball some rooms closing the Venezia tower for the duration would make sense. Except for adding flat panel TVs those rooms haven't been redone since the tower opened, and they're looking pretty tired.

January 27, 2009 10:21 AM Posted by LeoNYC

Thank you, MikeE for your extensive (but valuable) point of view. I'm doing some researches before planing a trip to Vegas in July to celebrate my b-day. And I got some great rates for Wynn salon suite from 7/5 to 7/9 at $650/night. But with your remarks, I'll be checking the Encore rates regularly. BTW, I heard the Encore Spa will be open to the general public starting next month.

January 27, 2009 1:35 PM Posted by Socalduck

Leo, the Encore spa is open to the public, but only for treatments scheduled prior to 8:00 am. My understanding is that there are no plans to expand access.

Checked into Encore yesterday (standard Resort room), and definitely agree the rooms to be superior to Wynn. Casino is gorgeous; it literally glows. I still love the Wynn, but Encore deserves the accolades it has received.

January 27, 2009 3:56 PM Posted by Hunter

My fairly bad Switch video is on YouTube:

January 27, 2009 4:20 PM Posted by Tom M.

I first heard this concept of a changing restaurant environment on the Disney cruise ships with Animators Palate. The room/waitstaff starts off in black and white and slowly it transforms during the meal to color. I was hoping that Wynn had somehow taken this idea and improved upon it. I know that the two video's are not great quality, but I am under-whelmed by what I saw. It seems a little gimmicky to me.

January 27, 2009 8:26 PM Posted by JK

I'm caught here. Going to vegas this summer and need help deciding where to stay because Encore has just opened. The rate for Wynn is 189, the rate for Encore is 199, the rate for the Wynn Tower suites is 279 and the rate for the Encore Tower Suites is 289. Basically, I'm asking Wynn Tower Suites for that price, or Encore Tower Suites for their price. And can Wynn Tower Suite guests use Encore's pool?
I've only ever stayed at Wynn, but not in any of the Tower Suites? Suggestions?

January 27, 2009 8:33 PM Posted by Hunter

I'd stay at Encore, either on the Resort or Tower Suites side, personally. If at Wynn, the TS...

Encore Resort rooms are more than acceptable. They're great.

Encore's pool is for Encore guests only - though they're pretty lax with card checking.

January 28, 2009 5:22 AM Posted by detroit1051

Question on Botero:
The photo in a brief RJ article makes it look like the floor is mosaic, not carpeted. If it is tile, is the restaurant noisy?

January 28, 2009 9:26 AM Posted by Hunter

It is tile.

I didn't really think of the restaurant as noisy but it is not meant to be a quiet, SW kinda place. It's more of a N9NE steakhouse kinda place, which is louder anyway.

January 28, 2009 12:47 PM Posted by steve_c

I was shocked when I was in the pool area how open Botero was to the rest of the patio deck. I thought this was a nice touch. I thought that whole area (as well as the rest of the resort), was very well thought out... the views of the pool are breathtaking.

JK- Go for Encore if you can. We had friends staying in a resort room at Wynn a few days while we were at Encore, and to compare the rooms... well they don't really compare. The standard Wynn rooms feel really thrown together when compared to their counterpart at Wynn (as do the elevator lobbies and hallways). Even with the divider in our room, the space was somewhat bigger. The bathrooms are very similar, but that was the extent of it. They were a bit taken when they saw our room.

I have never stayed at Wynn, so I can't speak for the service, but the service at Encore just blew me away. We didn't pass one employee who didn't stop and ask us how we were doing and if there was anything we could do for them. Half the time we couldn't make it down the hallway to the ice machine without someone offering to get it for us. (on that note, the only downside to Encore was the location of the ice machine, which was located at the most eastern portion of the tower. completely opposite of us in E6310).

More often than not, you can find Encore rates for cheaper than Wynn... and the $150 free slot play they sometimes offer is an added bonus too (especially when your girlfriend can turn that into $230 and essentially pay for 2 nights we didnt get comped).

January 28, 2009 1:44 PM Posted by Roger

It seems that the Wynns might be divorcing again:

Wonder what this would do to the company? Would she get half his shares? What if she sold them?

January 28, 2009 2:57 PM Posted by detroit1051

Roger, interesting gossip. If it is true (Page 6 usually gets it right), it's critical that Steve and Elaine keep functioning as a business team. My understanding is Elaine has been responsible for many of the good decisions made by Wynn Resorts after Steve left Mirage Resorts. Neither will want to jeopardize their financial success, but sometimes emotion can screw things up.

January 28, 2009 2:59 PM Posted by Hunter

I've been told a few times that Elaine is a big part of the design process - Thomas said she is very involved with interiors as well as employee uniforms and stuff like place settings in the restaurants.

January 29, 2009 12:29 AM Posted by Doug

From what I understand Elaine holds a top executive position(director?) at Wynn Resorts - but who knows what will happen. Everything I've ever read about Elaine is that she is a great person and everyone likes her.

As for Encore...I keep reading reviews that say the standard room walls are 'paper thin' and the conversation noise from other rooms is loud - is this true? Also, isn't the 'island gaming pit' in the pool area open to the public? - I think it has to be under Nevada gaming law. And wouldn't that put non-guests in the pool area anyway?

January 29, 2009 7:19 AM Posted by Evan

Caught this article about the Encore sky casino - hadn't seen it posted elsewhere...

300K to get in the door....

As for the discussion on Wynn vs. Encore - I stayed at both during a recent trip over New Years. It's tough to say one is overall better than the other. Instead, they really are more of a complement. As one dealer at Encore put it, they are Wynn's "hip little sister". Wynn could stand on it's own (obviously it did for a few years) but Encore takes it to another level.

You can compare individual elements, but overall, like I said - you really can't because Encore isn't really a complete resort. Encore's casino makes Wynn's (my personal favorite until now) look dated. As for shopping, the to Esplanades are very different in my opinion - some would favor Wynn, other Encore - it depends on taste. Dining - I think Wynn still takes it here - Encore's got some great places, but Wynn has a great variety (both high end and less expensive). Rooms - Encore wins here, especially on the resort side - and the rooms typically don't have much of a price difference.

Just thought I'd add my two cents...

January 29, 2009 8:34 AM Posted by Hunter

I didn't notice any sound from other rooms on either stay.

As far as the pool gaming - yes, it is open to the public and technically non-guests can force themselves in.

January 29, 2009 7:22 PM Posted by TC from Boston

I thought "paper thin" walls have been a major complaint of WLV as well?...or am I just be selective with my review readings...

January 30, 2009 6:27 AM Posted by Brian Fey

I've spent dozens of nights at Wynn LV, and don't recall noise ever being a problem. I do recall hearing a voice in the room next to me at Encore on one occasion, in the middle of the day, on opening night. But once again, I don't recall there being any big objections to the noise level in my room.

January 30, 2009 7:57 AM Posted by Mike T

I've stayed at the Wynn, and I didn't notice any problems with noise from other rooms. Of course, that really depends on the people you have sharing a wall with you. Some people are so loud that no amount of soundproofing or insulation is going to keep all of the noise out.

January 30, 2009 8:44 AM Posted by TC from Boston

During my stays at Wynn...I didn't hear anything either I was just throwing it out there for discussion, this of all things seems like a very selective complaint that someone might have in a hotel that causes negative reviews

January 30, 2009 10:21 AM Posted by detroit1051

Sound is the reason I established one requirement at hotels which I never give in on: : I wii not stay in a connecting room. Even at Wynn, sound comes through connecting doors.

January 30, 2009 3:21 PM Posted by steve_c

I couldn't hear anything from the neighboring room during my stay at Encore, but there were a few times when we could hear voices and screams from the Sky Casino we were sharing a wall with.

January 30, 2009 5:34 PM Posted by Doug

Well, I'll be at Encore in March so I can find out for myself...

Of course, when people review hotel/casinos I can't help thinking that other things influence their review.
Example: They won in the casino and got lots of good free drinks - "Hey, this place is great!" Or, the cocktail servers are drop-dead beautiful - "Hey, this place is great!" get the idea...

January 30, 2009 6:40 PM Posted by mike_ch

I can only speak for myself, but I don't have fleeting opinions like that at all.

I don't have the budget to do anything anymore, so all my opinions are formed from simply spending a lot of time in these places and seeing what's consistent. The only time I got treated to anything was Encore opening night, and while I got to hobnob with various important well-dressed people, I wasn't as thrilled with the place when I got back to my room as some people here..

January 31, 2009 2:33 PM Posted by Anthony

Found this article with some details of Aria.

February 1, 2009 9:35 AM Posted by Jeff in OKC

Hunter, are you putting out a podcast this week?

Also, do you have plans to cover the M opening? From a distance, I think it's going to be different than most new properties.

February 1, 2009 9:38 AM Posted by Hunter

Nope, no podcast this week. I was sick and had to cancel.

As far as the M opening, at this point probably not covering it live, no.

February 1, 2009 10:39 AM Posted by mike_ch

M: I'm probably not in town when it opens, and even if I am (or if I tried to get to it if I come back), there's no public transit access to it anyway. Bussing it to South Point and then taking a cab the rest of the way just doesn't seem like a fun time, so I shall let better eyes and ears than my own cover that one.

Heck, I'm having a hard enough time finding any time to go to the Strip right now, although I shall try again this week.

February 2, 2009 4:14 AM Posted by detroit1051

"Norm's" comments about some WYNN execs threatening to leave if Elaine leaves are disconcerting:

February 2, 2009 9:48 AM Posted by Jeff in OKC

It seems that this could really hurt the Wynn stock value, since they are both so intertwined with the image of the company and its developement. This really seems like a bad time for this to happen. I also wonder where Wynn could find the time to develope a life changing relationship in the midst of everything he is doing in business.

February 2, 2009 1:18 PM Posted by Anthony

Is anyone attending the M Resort opening? An interesting fly through video of what to expect. It seems using natural light is the new trend.

February 3, 2009 1:32 PM Posted by LeoNYC

I've just called Bellagio reservations to book a Penthouse to one of my friends and the lady who I spoke to said that all suite guests have access to a separate room where they can check in. She said it is not the old VIP room, but it is a different "room" separated from the lobby invited guests line. I was wondering if it is the Executive Suite Lounge they show on the website. According to the website this lounge is open to Hotel Suite guests. Also, they now brought back the limo transfer to all Penthouse guests.

February 3, 2009 2:22 PM Posted by detroit1051

Yes, it is the Executive Suite Lounge, but I thought it was the former VIP Registration/Lounge which has access to the private elevators for Floors 29-36. I hope your friends clarify this. I can't imagine Bellagio having the expense of two separate high-end registration areas.
Unrelated, MGM must wish it had never heard the word "condos":

February 4, 2009 12:26 PM Posted by steve_c

Video Photo tour of my trip to Encore a few weeks ago.

February 6, 2009 8:58 AM Posted by Anthony

CityCenter has to show proof that all of the other towers are sound.

February 9, 2009 9:39 PM Posted by mike_ch

Allegedly, Macao is down 30% for January. I saw a story on this on Voice of America today (VOA is the US' state broadcaster to the rest of the world, like BBC World Service but with a history of propaganda in previous wars) but they didn't list a source. Doing a Google search brought up a Xinhua story (likewise, mainland propaganda agency) also reporting this and sourcing a daily paper in Macao, but I couldn't find that paper and what it was sourcing on.

So, there you have it, according to two state agencies from governments that don't always see eye to eye, but not well confirmed beyond that. The VOA article is here for the curious.

February 9, 2009 9:43 PM Posted by Hunter

I saw some other unsubstantiated numbers that weren't quite that bad but were in the ballpark.

LVS reports Q4 on Wednesday so that will give us some insight, even if not January.

February 13, 2009 5:52 PM Posted by Mark D

Now Harrah's is trying to tap the remaining cash in their credit line, the same way Station Casinos did, indicating that their financial liquidity problems are getting worse and portends possible bankruptcy.

February 16, 2009 7:28 PM Posted by Mark D

Now it's Harrah's turn to get slapped with a class action suit by creditors.

March 2, 2009 1:00 PM Posted by Joe

I still can't believe that MGM didnt replace Jasmine at bellagio!!!

March 12, 2009 8:14 PM Posted by Mark D

Crown is terminating their purchase of Cannery.