Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

March 8, 2007

Las Vegas Sands Upgrades The Venetian Las Vegas

Posted by Hunter

Well, we knew this was coming but finally a press release... Las Vegas Sands is spending $100 million to upgrade the rooms in The Venetian to the standard they are setting with their new Palazzo resort being constructed next door.

The upgraded rooms will retain the existing sunken living configuration but include automatic drapes and other amenities.

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Read archived comments (23 so far)
March 8, 2007 1:41 PM Posted by detroit1051

$100 Million for 4,000 rooms is $25,000 per room. I know the baths are first class and don't need gutting, but is $25K enough to replace all furniture, carpeting, TV's, etc and, I assume, do the hallways?

March 8, 2007 2:21 PM Posted by BrianFey

Good Point Detroit. They are nice rooms, but are in dire need or redoing. They have pushed them past the time frame MGM uses for rennovations. I can't believe they waited 8 years, I am sure the are pretty tired looking. I'll be cusious to see them.

March 9, 2007 2:48 AM Posted by hail2skins

Detroit, how old is the Venezia tower? I may be mistaken, but aren't the rooms in that tower kind of upgraded from the ones in the original tower (i.e. flat screen TVs). Maybe at least those 1,000 rooms wouldn't need the facelift as much.

March 9, 2007 11:43 AM Posted by mike_ch

Detroit hit the nail on the head. El Cortez claimed in yesterday's RJ to spend $20 million on renovation, and they only have 300 rooms. They're obviously renovating a lot more than the rooms over there with those funds because the whole property has been allowed to rot, but they could have spent as much as the Venetian is spending per-room on renovations and only used up $7.5 mil of that budget.

March 9, 2007 12:38 PM Posted by detroit1051

Hail2skins, good point. says Venezia Tower opened in June '03, so it's going on four years. I've only stayed in the original tower, but I found some Venezia room photos, and the decor is similar to The Venetian, over the top "old world". The press release says the renovation will be "a more modern European design", so if they exclude Venezia, it might look old or less desireable compared to the main tower and Palazzo.
I've never been impressed with the quality at Venetian, but the rooms were really designed very well, the best in Vegas, in my opinion. The floorplan is identical, but updated, to the Lanai Suites on the third floor of the LV Hilton where you walk in from the hall and have bath, bedroom and step-down living area. The original International was ahead of its time.
Here's the link to Venezia photos:

March 9, 2007 12:55 PM Posted by Mike P.

Yeah, the Venezia tower has pretty much the same decor and furniture as the main tower. Flat screen CRT televisions and high speed internet connections were the only real upgrades from the standard rooms in the original tower.

Mike P.

March 9, 2007 1:02 PM Posted by mike_ch

My bet is that Venezia won't be included. But that's from the language used in the press release. LVS is always really particular about their language, and saying "The Venetian suites" implies the older tower to me.

But then again, they like to break their own language rules in the spirit of making their projects sound more important, see also "Palazzo as a boutique hotel" versus "Palazzo as Venetian Phase III (and did we mention it's the largest hotel in the world?)"

March 9, 2007 1:15 PM Posted by detroit1051

I just noticed Venetian's website has been redesigned. I assume it's fairly recent.

March 9, 2007 1:22 PM Posted by Hunter

Yeah, I think about a month ago.

March 9, 2007 4:38 PM Posted by mike_ch

I'm posting this here because it's the latest topic related to Las Vegas Sands, and I suppose this is most relevant to that company than anything else:

Bill Gates (US, Microsoft) - $56bn
Warren Buffett (US, investor) - $52bn
Carlos Slim (Mexico, industrialist) - $49bn
Ingvar Kamprad (Sweden, Ikea) - $33bn
Lakshmi Mittal (India, steel) - $32bn

Gee, anybody notice a name disappear overnight?

March 9, 2007 5:04 PM Posted by Pikes

In the Forbes 400 U.S. richest Sheldon in # 3, Wynn is # 107...

March 9, 2007 6:45 PM Posted by Tom M

Sheldon is #3 on the US list at 20.5 billion. The list above is a worldwide list and I don't think Adelson has ever been in the top five of that list.

March 9, 2007 7:19 PM Posted by Chris

I wouldn't worry about Sheldon - last year Forbes had him at #3 with $20.5b, this year he "dropped" to #6 with $26.5b.

Seeing as his net worth has INCREASED 30% from last year, or "overnight" as you say, I really don't think he needs to worry about where he falls on the list. I certainly wouldn't consider making $6 billion in one year to be a failure just because someone else made $15 billion.

March 9, 2007 8:40 PM Posted by Mike E

Mike, Sheldon wasn't third richest in the world, but only in the U.S. According to that Forbes article, he's still third in the U.S., but that was estimated before LVS took a swan dive last week.

March 10, 2007 12:52 PM Posted by mike_ch

Ah. Well, if nothing else, I suppose it shows how much competition he has to contend with on his way to the top of the greed ladder. Heh.

March 10, 2007 5:54 PM Posted by Leonard Stern

Once again, I find compelled to chime in here, Mike E is 100% correct in the fact that, within the last year, Sheldon was the third richest in the [U.S.] based on the Forbes current list of billionaires. Well, it now appears that Adelson's net worth has INCREASED by at least SIX BILLION DOLLARS since then to approx. $26.5B whereby Wynn's net worth, on paper (even after considering the maximum run-up in the share price of WYNN), has advanced by slightly more than $1.1B, added to his existing net worth now estimated at $3.5B. And, one must consider that Adelson's plans, including the completion of Palazzo before Encore, collectively represent only around 10% of what he [LVS] intends to develop in both Macau + Singapore operating as a monopoly for U.S. investment there. LVS hasn't even begun to reap the insane profits they will eventually realize in Macau after Venetian Macau opens there + when they proceed with the Cotai masterplan + the other (non-gaming) Chinese properties, already pre-approved by the Chinese government, that they plan on developing. I predict, with reasonable certainty, that by 2010, Sheldon Adelosn will have a personal net worth of a least $40B at an absolute minimum!

March 11, 2007 2:03 PM Posted by Gregory_Zephyr

Speaking of automated curtains, the first time I stayed at Bellagio and entered the room I could not figure out how to shut the curtains. I looked for a cord on either side and I tried pulling them closed manually to no avail. I gave up and left the room for dinner. Getting back I sat on the bed and went to turn on the reading lights over the bed and flipped the switch on the wall. Voila! the curtains closed. I wonder how many people call the front desk to ask why the curtains can't be pulled closed. I don't consider myself unsophisticated but I thought they could have at least had a label on the switch or something.

By the way, IMO, the other hotel rooms that are way overdue for an upgrade are the Four Seasons on top of Mandalay.

March 22, 2007 12:05 PM Posted by motoman

I have a question, and I seriously don't want this to become incendiary, but just wondering. I too saw the updated Venetian site and it caused me to wonder: why has this group (myself included) been so hatin' on LVS? I previously wrote that the place seemed pretty amazing on first impression, although clearly I agree with the current consensus.

My negative impressions since that first visit have more to do with the extremely poor flow through the public areas, and the lack of a warm fuzzy about LVS in general. And yes, I surfed the archives back to Hunter's very first post which pointed out the shortcomings, and have absorbed the culture here since that time.

But the variety and quality of room product looked pretty amazing. (In fact it made me realize just how quickly Wynn's standard Resort and Tower rooms might potentially go stale.) Yes, over-the-top Old World, and I'm curious just how modern they're going to go with the updates. Granted, judging the overall property from a few web images is the proverbial "book by its cover" analogy, but still....

LVS has had plenty of time to learn from the shortcomings of Venetian as well as the successes of Wynn, the Bellagio decline and resurrection, and their own Venezia addition. I find myself actually looking forward to Palazzo just to see how well the lessons are implemented.

(Meanwhile we're already saving/planning for our next return to WLV -- perhaps even the long awaited try for a Fairway, for a night at least -- curse you, Mike E! ;-)

March 22, 2007 1:52 PM Posted by Mike E

Moto, you haven't been showing the video to the guys at the office, have you? ;-)

When are you going?

March 22, 2007 2:52 PM Posted by mike_ch

I only stayed once at the Venetian, but I feel it's a poorly laid out place. If you're staying in the hotel and you need to go to the front desk for something, it's not just trapezing through the casino, but also down that long hallway. There's just something about the design of the place that makes it feel that like they intentionally wanted to make it hard for people who are staying there to be able to leave the property. Mandalay Bay, Wynn Tower Suites, and even the fairly modest Paris all provide the hotel guest with fair convenience to leave. Venetian is there with MGM Grand in the sense that both hotels really want to trap you.

I feel Venetian is a strong hotel VS Wynn, but that's because I feel that Wynn hasn't matured yet and may very likely be built upon a poor philosophy, if Steve himself is really calling all the shots on all the operations he claims he is. That's something I could expand upon, but I don't really want to turn another discussion thread into critiques and defenses of WLV.

Overall, Venetian is something I would recommend to people who like Caesars but want to try something a little different.

March 22, 2007 3:03 PM Posted by detroit1051

Motoman, I too am looking forward to Palazzo. The Venetian was built on the cheap, imo, and much of the trim, both exterior and interior, started falling apart from opening day. I remember signing up for Venetian's mailing list when there was a temporary sales office on the Strip during construction. There was a furnished mock-up of a room, including bath. With the step-down living area, it brought the Strip to a new level. When Venetian opened, I received a glossy, expensive marketing piece which extolled the new level of luxury in Vegas. I will always remember the photo of the grand hallway with the globe. Running down the floor was a contractor's heavy duty extension cord and in the background, a piece of the ornate baseboard molding was missing. I thought, if they can't do a marketing piece right, what else won't they do right.

Well, they do a lot of things right, and I won't repeat my previous comments on the great restaurants, but Venetian doesn't have the "feel" of either Bellagio or Wynn. Venezia Tower was a big improvement, and I'll bet Adelson is building an entirely new class of resort in Palazzo. I want to stay there even if I have to wait until 2008.

April 18, 2007 5:02 AM Posted by detroit1051

$1,500-$2,000 sq ft for LVS' Palazzo condos? Unreal prices all along the strip. LVS' cost to build will be $465 Million; sales will generate $1.45 Billion to $1.94 Billion.

April 24, 2007 7:55 AM Posted by detroit1051

Has anyone been to TAO? The brand has been very good to LVS, Bistro, Nightclub and now Beach: