Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

All Articles Published: June 2005

June 28, 2005

Wynn Macau Taking Shape

Posted by Hunter

Courtesy of Wynn Resorts, some new photos of the models for Wynn Macau, opening in just over one year from now.

Site With Superimposed Model
Wynn Macau Model
Wynn Macau Under Construction

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June 25, 2005

Changes Coming to the Blog

Posted by Hunter

A heads up to my loyal readers - we are currently working on a new design for the blog. The current setup is a generic template with some minor tweaks - not optimal. I've been working with a designer that specializes in this format to come up with something that is friendly, easy to access, can generate some advertising revenue and has a Vegas feel. This new look could be coming as soon as July 1st.

Also on the drawing board is a total re-design of, our sister site. The new version focuses on 'getting back to basics', meaning a re-focus on the core function of the site - hotel information and ratings. The new design will be very light, with lots of white space and large photos. This is only in the mockup stages but I'm pretty excited about it. Along with the redesign will come a new technology base that will flow better with the new look. This change is further out as it is much more involved.

June 24, 2005

Changes Coming to Wynn Las Vegas

Posted by Hunter

Some interesting changes are coming to Wynn Las Vegas, based both on guest feedback and some underperforming areas.

Here's what we've heard:

  • The baccarat salon will be further enclosed to make it more private. The glass walls will be replaced with mirrors and curtains added to reduce visibility into the room.
  • The 'B Bar' is considered a bit of a mistake - or at least a missed opportunity. A walk-up bar, perhaps with video poker, will be added to that area.
  • Corsa Cucina will be closed for a complete remodel to feature wood tones and leather. The restaurant is underperforming and the current 'race car' design isn't helping.
  • While the ultralounge Lure is doing very well, the nightclub La Bete is not. La Bete will be heavily changed, perhaps even being reborn with a new name.
  • The tiles that are coming up due to heavy visitor traffic are too much for maintenance to keep up with. They are trying to figure out ways to protect it.
  • The open waterways in the atrium villa will be getting a glass protective wall. Too many people have fallen in.

The goal is 'done by Labor Day', but that seems pretty ambitious, as most are still on the drawing board. One thing is clear - they are not afraid to change areas that don't work at Wynn.

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That's not my title, that was the name of the session at the Casino Design 2005 conference at Wynn Las Vegas.

While there were a lot of sessions that focused on general design themes and trends, this kick-off panel was looking directly at the recently completed $2.7 billion Wynn Las Vegas complex.

More after the jump...

This is a trip report from reader detroit1051. What I've done is to throw my new comments on Wynn into the mix as he discusses certain aspects of the resort. It's fairly long so you have to click through to read the contents. Enjoy.

June 23, 2005

Casino Design 2005: Wynn Las Vegas

Posted by Hunter

We're onsite for the conference.

Checked into Wynn and I can say at first glance, a lot of improvements have been made in the past 6 weeks.

I took some photos of Wynn and The Mirage's new high roller room.

They are going up on Flickr now: June 2005 Trip Photos

More updates to come tomorrow.

June 22, 2005

Gaming Executive Pay Scale

Posted by Hunter

VegasTripping compiled a nice little table of industry pay: Industry Pay Scales

Wynn's doing pretty well for not having a resort in operation until 2 months ago!

June 22, 2005

Monorail Use Dips

Posted by Hunter

Use of the Las Vegas Monorail has dipped in the last month according to this story in the LVRJ.

The Monorail is still well short of breaking even.

Monorail in LVRJ

June 22, 2005

Gambling Revenue to Reach $100B

Posted by Hunter

According to a PriceWaterhouseCoopers study, worldwide legal gambling revenues are set to reach $100 billion by the end of the decade.

Study in LVRJ

It is estimated that Nevada casinos will win almost $16 billion of that total.

June 20, 2005

Wynn Las Vegas Marketing

Posted by Hunter

Today I received a marketing mailing from Wynn Las Vegas. I get these from Las Vegas casinos all the time but this one was different.

This was a fold-out booklet that included a multi-media presentation on a CD-ROM, plus it even works on MacOS X.

Just an FYI for those folks that are following Wynn closely.

June 15, 2005

What's Next For Caesars Palace?

Posted by Hunter

Now that the Harrah's/Caesars merger is complete, many are left wondering how Harrah's can handle Caesars Palace. The venerable Strip casino has been a high-rolling icon since the 60s - a business segment that Harrah's has not reached in the past.

A piece in today's RJ looks at some of fear that circles the changing of the guard in the Empire.

What's Next at Caesars (LVRJ)

June 15, 2005

Duck Family Tries The $20 Trick?

Posted by Hunter

Many of you that have walked past The Mirage have surely seen the ducks that live in the lagoon.

Well, according to the LVRJ, some of those little guys have moved across the street, perhaps to see the self proclaimed 'world's largest standard hotel rooms' for themselves:

Ducks Move to Venetian (LVRJ)

No word on if The Venetian expects them to increase their bottom line or if they plan a similar installation in Macao. :-)

Seriously though, the ducks seem to be without food so I hope that this story has a happy ending.

June 14, 2005

Mirage Changes Continue

Posted by Hunter

The Mirage recently opened its new baccarat and high limit room, just across the way from the old facility (where the semi-private gaming used to be). The old baccarat area and Baccarat Bar lounge is closed for renovation as well.

June 14, 2005

Bally's To Be Imploded?

Posted by Hunter

An article in today's LV Sun mentions the possibility of Bally's being imploded to make way for a Horseshoe.

While I think it is highly probably that Bally's will be renovated and turned into a Horseshoe, I would be surprised to see a complete implosion. That's the Wynn way of thinking, not the Loveman way of doing business.

Bally's Imploded?

EDIT: Post your Bally's/MGM Grand memories in the comments!

An interesting article in the LVRJ that details how the two companies got together:

Documents Detail (LVRJ)

According to some Wall St. research published recently in the LVRJ, analysts believe that Wynn Resorts will have the third largest annual revenues in the industry by 2006.

Still, their $2.8B is dwarfed by the $9B and $7.5B that are expected to be generated by Harrah's and MGM MIRAGE.

For the full article, check out this link (LVRJ).

According to a press release issued today, the Nevada Gaming Commission has approved the merger between Harrah's and Caesars Entertainment. That was the last regulatory hurdle for the merger to be completed, which is expected to take place on Monday, June 13th.

Business Wire Release

June 10, 2005

Las Vegas Sands Expands Macao Plans

Posted by Hunter

Looks like Adelson is taking on more of action on his Venetian Cotai Strip project in Macao:

Las Vegas Sun

June 10, 2005

More On Yemenidjian's Exit From MGM MIRAGE Board

Posted by Hunter

The Sun has more info on Alex Yemenidjian's exit from the board of MGM MIRAGE and what he might be up to next.

Las Vegas Sun

June 10, 2005

Classic Las Vegas Screening at Cinevegas!

Posted by Hunter

I have had the pleasure of seeing several snippets and rough cuts of an upcoming documentary on Las Vegas history called 'As We Knew It: The Story of Classic Las Vegas'.

For those in Las Vegas, there is an upcoming screening of a work-in-progress print of the film.

If you can, I encourage you to check this out. What I've seen is great stuff. Details:

Wednesday, June 15th 1:00 pm:
A Work in Progress Screening of "The Story of Classic Las Vegas"

A rare chance to see the documentary in this incarnation.
Come learn the history of Las Vegas from the men and women who
lived it.

Brenden Theatres at the Palms Hotel

Tickets on sale through the Cinevegas website:
or beginning Tuesday at the Boxoffice.

A few quick notes for this Friday...

According to Norm! in the LVRJ, Wynn is trying to rescue his floundering nightclub, La Bete:
Norm at LVRJ

Wynn's Hiring Chief Discusses Ramping Up For The Opening (LVRJ)
Arte Nathan Talks

Could Lake Tahoe Have Scuttled the Harrah's Caesars Merger? (LVRJ)
FTC Looks At Tahoe

Gaming Win Down From March; Still Sets Record (LVRJ)
Gaming Win April 2005

June 9, 2005

Gaming The Industry by Hal Rothman

Posted by Hunter

UNLV History Chair Hal Rothman has written an interesting article for the Las Vegas Business Press on what is coming in the Vegas gaming industry.

It is a recommended read.

Hal Rothman at LV Business Press

Thanks to detroit1051 for pointing this out!

June 9, 2005

Encore at Wynn on Ice?

Posted by Hunter

As has been the rumor since the opening of Wynn Las Vegas, the article below seems to indicate that the schedule for Encore is being moved a bit.

Reuters Article

June 8, 2005

FTC Clears Harrah's Acquisition of Caesars

Posted by Hunter

According to sources familiar with the deal, the Federal Trade Commission today approved the merger between Harrah's Entertainment and Caesars Entertainment.

The last hurdle towards finalizing the merger is Nevada gaming authorities, who are expected to approve the deal on Friday, June 10th.

Once the deal is complete, Harrah's will own the following Las Vegas casinos: Paris, Bally's, The Flamingo, Caesars Palace, Harrah's Las Vegas, and the Rio. Harrah's has extensive holdings outside of Nevada as well.

AP Story: Harrah's and Caesars Merger Clears FTC

June 8, 2005

Mirage Nightclub, 'Jet Vegas', to Open Late 2005

Posted by Hunter

According to Norm in the LVRJ, the new nightclub going in at The Mirage will open in 2005 and be called 'Jet Vegas'.

It is being operated by the folks that run Light at Bellagio.

Last month I posted a copy of the letter that I sent to Wynn execs Steve Wynn, Marc Schorr and Richard Cotter (EVP Hotel/F&B).

Well, I received a response and I can say I'm disappointed.

The letter I got back (from Cotter's office) was a generic form letter response, same as you would get filling in any guest card. I would print it here but it would be pointless.

Maybe I shouldn't have expected more, but I did. Past letters to other resorts have gotten much more personal attention.

For instance, a letter to then Mandalay chair Mike Ensign netted a response from his office with specific mention of the items I discussed in my original note. A later letter to TI management was followed by a phone call with the head of Table Games.

I think Wynn Las Vegas folks probably do care and appreciate the response but if I take the time to write them a letter, I expect a real response - not 'Guest Letter Response.doc' with my name at the top. Maybe that's just me.

For what it is worth, the stationary is nice!

June 6, 2005

More Details on Wynn 'Urban Village' Emerge

Posted by Hunter

From yesterday's LVRJ:

Steve talked about this a bit at the shareholder's meeting. This has been a long term plan for quite some time.

June 2, 2005

Wynn Las Vegas Earns $140.9M in 34 Days

Posted by Hunter

Wynn Resorts today released operating details for Wynn Las Vegas through May 31st, 2005.

The casino segment earned $64.3M while non-gaming revenues totaled $76.6M. The average daily rate was $308 with 91% occupancy (room inventory was not 100% available at the time of opening).

In it's first 77 days, Bellagio generated $3M of revenue/day. Based on the above figures, Wynn Las Vegas generated $4.14M revenue/day.