Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

According to filings with Clark County zoning, Boyd Gaming has updated their master plan for Echelon Place to include 1,000 more rooms than previously approved. In addition, the 1,000 condo/hotel rooms in the original plan have been jettisoned.

The plan now includes 5,280 rooms with some featuring kitchens. The site is still split into multiple towers, housing the various hotel components they have planned.

For development geeks, the filing is here:

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Read archived comments (17 so far)
March 5, 2007 1:27 PM Posted by socalduck

Interesting. They nixed the hotel/condos, but will build a bunch of rooms with kitchens. It sounds like they are keeping their options open with regards to selling these as condos at some point in the future.

On a related topic, is there any feedback on MGM's efforts to sell condo/hotel rooms within City Center?

March 5, 2007 2:53 PM Posted by BrianFey

That's a lot of rooms for that neighborhood!

March 5, 2007 6:39 PM Posted by Mike P.

What do you mean by feedback? Last time I checked the condo units in the Mandarin were sold out, or maybe very nearly so. The Veer towers had about 600 out of 670 units under contract. Vdara, which is the only condo-hotel in the project, had about 700 out of 1500 sold.

I'll probably visit the sales center in late March, and might have more feedback then. BTW if you haven't seen it they have some nice, but not too informative brochures online at

Here's another question -- if Asian stock markets continue their meltdown does that increase or decrease demand for Vegas condos? The case for increase is that real estate could now look like a safer investment. The case for decrease is that Asian buyers are now a lot poorer.

Mike P.

March 6, 2007 12:09 PM Posted by BillyInLasVegas

All I know is that CityCenter just hired over 70 new sales people in the last month. I think sales are going well.
Also all of the MGM Mirage properties will have some sort of CityCenter sales area. By the way if you say you're interested you get a free limo ride to the sales pavilion.

March 11, 2007 7:00 AM Posted by detroit1051

Sunday's RJ has an article on the growth of the North Strip from Spring Mountain Rd to Sahara. The aerial map shows the potential of the area. Even the LV Hilton will be back in a prime spot.

March 13, 2007 2:57 AM Posted by mike_ch

Echelon article in the Tuesday paper:

Interesting comment:

"I think to use word theme in relationship to Echelon is inappropriate," Boughner said. "Echelon, in terms of architecture, is more about designing a building that will evoke an emotion. A theme doesn't evoke an emotion, it evokes a cheap thrill. The best buildings in the world are designed to appeal to our sense of beauty."

March 24, 2007 9:36 AM Posted by Leonard Stern

Boyd has just released preliminary overall masterplan renderings for the latest version of Echelon Place. They can be found in Boyd's project presentation report on pages 26, 27 + 28. I don't think that CityCenter will have much to worry about based on these current design plans. Although these renderings are not detailed enough to be able to read the exterior facades + window wall materials, the whole scheme is rather disappointing, I was expecting more from Klai-Juba's two boutique hotel towers. This confirms my reasoning that certain architectural firms ("starchitects") have been able to achieve unparalled success + a world renowned reputation as being superior designers, both from a subjective as well as an objective viewpoint. This is clearly evident when comparing CityCenter to Echelon for example.

March 24, 2007 12:13 PM Posted by mike_ch

I know this is possibly going to set off some fireworks (I hope not!), but to my eye Echelon is at least identifiable as a hotel resort. CityCenter still has difficulty looking like it didn't fall out of downtown Anywhere, USA. Nothing in the sales pavilion nor the actual building going up is convincing me otherwise.

Now then, some combination of things could be happening, including:
1) Leonard knows something I don't
2) MGM is going to have a name/identity of the Pelli resort component that I don't know about, in which case the hotel will not be carrying the incredibly bland name "CityCenter."
3) The building could end up looking different than the renderings/miniatures would suggest.

I still reserve the right to get excited, since they haven't said anything about the hotel, the restaurants, etc. Then again, neither has Echelon.

March 24, 2007 1:44 PM Posted by Leonard Stern

mike_ch: Let's see, if you were Monty Hall, "I would choose "Door #1" in responding to your comment. I DEFINATELY know something you don't in connection with the final + future design plans for project CityCenter. Let's just leave it at that for the time being. The Pelli tower @ CityCenter has NOTHING whatsoever to do with brand/name recognition. Although the "miniatures" you refer to are actually/correctly called "presentation architectural scale models" of CityCenter, trust me, you will not be disappointed in the final design details of the Pelli tower in particular. MGM/MIRAGE has intentionally left out specific design details of the exterior tower(s) skin in both the models + renderings + they have accordingly included a disclosure statement reflecting this in all of [their] published materials. With respect to Boyd's "ghost" schematic CAD renderings just released, it is too early to tell how well executed the 'final' design of Echelon will ultimately become. I can tell you from a professional point of view that the site development, poor direct Strip frontage access + the need for a secondary road to service vital components of the property, as well as the proposed location of the respective multiple towers does NOT reflect the most efficient use of the massive acreage that they have to work with when considering Echelon has more site development area than that of CityCenter. Let's all hope that these renderings represent a "work in progress", otherwise we will end up with ANOTHER boring, mega-billion dollar resort just like WLV/Encore at the north end of the Strip when what desperately needs to be built there are trend-setting projects like the proposed LVT, Fontainbleau + hopefully something really "first-rate" by the developers of the pending New Frontier deal when it finally closes.

March 24, 2007 4:25 PM Posted by Brian Fey

I think MGM has said all along, CityCenter may not be the final name of the main hotel on that project. I think the main PCC tower does look really good. And I too was disappointed in the look of Echelon Place, its ok, but it does seem like its not laid out all that well, and I agree it does seem like the land use is not being used to its full potential. Fountianbleau, has released almost no information. Are you telling me it will be better and nicer than Wynn? I hope you are correct. But I won't hold my breath.

March 25, 2007 11:25 AM Posted by Leonard Stern

Brian, from everything that I've heard floating around the industry + Glenn Schaeffer is keeping Fontainebleau's details very close to the vest, however, it is expected to be a significantly far superior property than WLV/Encore, particularly in overall quality + design. Just because WLV/Encore is the newest + greatest at the present time doesn't necessarily make it the "best". Fontainebleau Las Vegas is intended to become an "iconic architectural symbol" similar to the original Morris Lapidus-designed [Fontainebleau's] impact in 1954 had on the future of resort hotels in Miami. Lapidus was the father of "Miami Modern" architecture that in turn influenced the future of resort architecture in Las Vegas by designers like my father among others. Architecturally it will make WLV/Encore look like just another Steve Wynn over-hyped boring design + architecturally "insignificant". In todays SUN there is an interview with Steve re Macau + L.V. whereby Wynn offers his "expert" design critique in the manner that only a bull shit artist like himself can do by suggesting the Altoon+Porter designed "Cloud" at the Fashion Show be imploded when the New Frontier bites the dust since he considers it to be an eyesore. One might also suggest that his own ugly ass towers be considered in the equation as well. Steve just doesn't understand progressively designed architecture. Keep building those Roger Thomas designed 'whorehouse interiors' Steve, they are sure to become iconic contributions to great design! Thomas' epitaph should read "Here lies the world's greatest designer of gaudy + garish bordello interiors" LOL

March 25, 2007 7:26 PM Posted by Brian Fey

Interesting, Now Wynn is back on his Q4 2008 opening of Encore it would seem. That was the original plan, then they were staying Q1 of 2009. I guess we'll just have to wait and see.

March 25, 2007 8:55 PM Posted by mike_ch

I don't care much Wynn's inside spaces either but that might be going a little too far.

A broken clock is right twice a day, though, and I don't think the criticism of the Fashion Show front is somehow invalid just because it came from Steve. I've never seen any good use of that space other than to sell iPods 24 hours a day. And in the summertime it can be absolutely brutal.

June 18, 2007 8:28 PM Posted by detroit1051

More details on Echelon Place. Cost rising; groundbreaking June 19:

Delano and Mondrian Hotels:

June 19, 2007 8:06 AM Posted by detroit1051

What's the opinion of you more knowledgeable bloggers on Chad Oppenheim, Klai Juba, Marcel Wanders, Piet Boon and Cagley and Tanner? Is Boyd/Morgans Hotels going to give us a first class Echelon Place?
I'll check out Oppenheim's work next time I drive to Miami.

June 19, 2007 1:19 PM Posted by detroit1051

Comprehensive Echelon site, but it takes a lot of clicks to see everything.

June 19, 2007 7:39 PM Posted by charlie


Something about Echelon seems that it will be just right...more approachable than CityCenter...not the massive size and lack of integration. I also favor the design much more than Wynn...not so much "Wynnmsy" or less "Wynnmsical" the same time, you feel that Boyd will treat as a real, valued patron of Echelon (similar to Wynn)..and not a number.