Episode #74 is up!
This time on the show:
- Wynn vs. Okada
- MGM Results and CityCenter's Flaws
- Dr. Dave's Banging Week
** Sure Bets **
Lots to talk about here. We're doing a special Vegas Gang show this week to discuss.
I'm very happy today to have a post from a guest writer, Paolo Mello.
Many of you will undoubtedly know Paolo from Twitter, where he posts as @paolomello. You'll also find him contributing to comment threads here and at VegasTripping.com where his username is 'middleclassbuzz'.
Paolo is a Nevada native and Vegas expert, currently living in New York City. In this excellent piece, Paolo muses on the future of leadership at Las Vegas gaming companies.
You'll find his text after the jump - enjoy!
The Casino Formerly Known as the Atlantic City Hilton (and currently known as the ACH) has just announced its new name: the Atlantic Club. It's also got a new game: the locals and low-rollers market. I'm really undecided about this one, but I thought I'd share some of my thoughts.
Episode #73 is up!
This time on the show:
** Sure Bets **
I've been spending a little time at the M Resort, partially for a column you'll be able to read in Vegas Seven this Thursday, and it's gotten me thinking about star/diamond rankings. What use are they, and what exactly do they do for you, the paying public?
Monte Carlo has introduced a new iPad app, featuring 3d-ish walk-throughs of parts of the property.
If you ever used the flawed-but-ahead-of-its-time Quicktime VR, you have a sense of how this works. Pick a part of the facility and you have a finger-pannable panorama, giving a good feeling about how the place looks and feels.
Tour the rooms, restaurants, casino, spa, meeting rooms and even Hotel32. All of the major areas are represented here.
The iPad-only app weighs in at a relativey hefty 151MB and includes a few extras like integration with Google Maps and their various social media pages.
Overall, the app is a bit clumsy and feels more like a technology demo than a finished product: the pseudo-slot interface certainly doesn't help. That said, there's something about these realistic panoramas that really make you feel like you are there.
I give Monte Carlo points for doing something different and blazing a new trail, especially when it comes to building apps on smartphones and tablets.
More of this kind of innovation, please.
[Thanks to Dave for pointing this out.]
As probably everyone that reads this site knows, Wynn Las Vegas launched their re-designed Web site yesterday. The result is another sad chapter of decline for the company.
Chuckmonster at VegasTripping.com sums it up very well:
What you see before you on WynnLasVegas.com is not only a representation of Steve Wynn's declining eyesight, but the sheer lack of vision (and courage) by the team he has hired to execute orders.
Read the whole piece, it's a great take on the seemingly Jitterbug-inspired abomination they've created.
Not only is the new site ugly and brand destroying but it's also less functional. They removed restaurant menus, all the information on the casino including credit applications, the poker room stuff (there is a separate site for poker but good luck finding a link from the main site) and more. Maps? A site map? Gone. Pretty much the only thing it has going for it is some great photography. The in-room tours are basically just re-encoded versions of the videos that run on the Wynn TV channel in the guest rooms.
Again, back to Chuck:
Steve Wynn trusts Roger Thomas to turn every drywalled cube into a lustful space filled with fantasy and wonder. Where is Steve Wynn's "Rog Thom" of the internet?
Excellent point. Wynn as an organization has never fully mastered the 'net. That was starting to happen a few years ago as the e-strategies team filled out and their advice was heeded... and then they all left as the Spiegel-era set in. This is the result.
It's pretty amazing to see a well-respected company fall so hard on it's face with something as public as a Web site, especially an organization that's ostensibly all about design. I'm sure the people that worked on this project are nice folks but this is just embarrassing. It never should have left the lab and honestly, someone that's doing this level of work shouldn't be at an organization like Wynn.
The fact that Steve made a big deal on their earnings call about how proud they were shows that he's completely Internet-tone-deaf. Somehow a guy that typically has excellent taste not only approved this but thinks it's great. Steve - you may be an expert on hotels but I am confident I am more qualified when it comes to the Web: this is not good.
I showed this off to colleagues that build Web sites. They burst out laughing... and don't I wish I could share the choice comments that some in the industry sent to me.
Wynn should ask for their $29.99 back, revert to the old site immediately and, if they really want to break ground on the Internet, start over and do something that's worthy of all of the brand equity they've created through excellent hotel design.
Blow our minds with some cutting-edge responsive design that seamlessly works across all screen sizes and platforms. Integrate more of their backend systems to give the guest more power to control their stay from the Web. There's a ton of things they could do to be a leader in their industry online.
Or just leave it like it was...