Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

April 7, 2007

Worst Las Vegas Podcast #15 - April 6, 2007

Posted by Hunter

We're back after a few weeks off and this time I'm joined in the studio by two friends, Carter and Kevin.

Discussion includes Harrah's buyout, Macau updates, CityCenter and more, plus some oh so witty banter and a call from Mike E.


Here's the link to all the most recent photos:

A reminder - feel free to call in and leave us a message about anything Las Vegas or Web site related. The call in number is: 702-508-4232.

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Read archived comments (14 so far)
April 8, 2007 12:15 AM Posted by Mike E

Best podcast yet, Hans! "Big ups" and "shout outs" to Kevin. I look forward to sharing dinner with him again sometime.

I could hardly understand myself in that phone call. I tend to mumble I guess, but also because I was in the Tower Suites lobby, I didn't want to be the obnoxious guy on the cell phone. What I meant to say was, they're installing a revolving door in place of the Tower Suites pool entrance and will most likely include a key checker/scanner since it was pretty much unguarded before. The temporary wall isn't just any other wall though. It's seriously as nice as the quality you'll find at Venetian, which isn't that nice at all, but still impressive for a temporary project. There was an armoir, vase, and chandelier there. Not bad considering that it was created specifically to ease three days of construction to the eyes.

April 8, 2007 1:15 PM Posted by Tom M

I was surprised by your excoriation of DT. Certainly he opens himself up to ridicule based on how he promotes himself publicly. Also, I agree that his casino's in AC are total crap but so were all the other casino's there until the Borgata was built. Now everyone in AC is upgrading, including Trump, because the success of Borgata has broadened the marketplace. I have not toured any of his apartment buidings that he owns or operates in NYC but I have been to some of his buildings' public spaces and found the quality to be very high. I don't like his architectural style at all but I don't agree that these are poor quality buildings or that he is the "Paris Hilton" of business. This guy knows what he is doing even if you don't like his style(personal or architectural). Have you toured the sales pavilion at the las vegas property? I would be interested to know why you think the property is poor quality. Also, fyi tonight's episode of the Apprentice is based on the property in Las Vegas so you might watch it just for that even if you can stand it.

April 8, 2007 5:49 PM Posted by Hunter

Hey Tom,

First off, thanks for listening. Trump isn't really all that involved in the AC casinos any more, due to the fact that he ran the company into the ground and it was about an inch away from defaulting on its debt. Previous to that, the company had such poor credit that all cash flow was going to debt service/interest and they had practically no money to spend on keeping the place up. The Taj was literally falling apart and ragged when I last visited a couple of years ago.

Not all the AC properties are that bad. The former Golden Nugget (now AC Hilton) was pretty nice in its day and Caesars is at least a few notches above Trump. My AC experience is limited and others may have more relevant feedback on this topic and if so, I'd love to hear it.

Trump's taste literally scares me. What he thinks is 'the finest quality' is typically what I would use as an example of a terrible Versailles knock off.

On the show, I wasn't the one who compared him to Paris Hilton but I do think it is funny and somewhat apt. He's now more famous for being 'Donald Trump' than he is for his various business ventures.

Regarding the Las Vegas property, I haven't toured the sales pavilion, no. I'm basing any opinions of that property on the scale models, renderings, and blueprints that I've seen.

An acquaintance of mine lives in Trump Tower in New York. I asked him all about what the place was like as a resident and what he thought. He told me that he had had a load of problems that had required a lot of work to be done. We didn't have a chance to get into the specifics but it sounded like he was less than impressed. Of course everyone's apartment is a bit different but that conversation has colored my opinion of his work.


April 8, 2007 9:02 PM Posted by Tom M

Thanks for the feedback on Trump. I agree that his taste is scary bad. But that is different than poor quality. Good to hear about your friend in NY, that tends to lend some credibility to your argument. I just don't believe that wealthy people would continue to pay top dollar for building after building that he puts up if the real estate wasn't holding its value and if he didn't deliver what he claims. In real estate this would be a big problem for his reputation at the high end if he failed to deliver. By the way, on the Apprentice tonight, he announced he is going to build the second tower(you probably already knew this).

I live near AC and visit frequently. I agree that the Trump Casino's have been badly managed and, to me, he is not someone that should be in the casino business. By the way, The Borgata is adding an addition that has topped out and looks pretty interesting. Are you interested in AC construction photos and updates?? There is alot going on there right now and I think it could be very interesting for the next 5-10 years.

April 8, 2007 9:55 PM Posted by Hunter


I've posted all that I know and you make a good point about his ongoing reputation. Hopefully someone with more knowledge will speak to that.

On the Las Vegas development, yeah, the second tower has been in the works for some time - it's on sale already. It's a carbon copy of tower number one.

As far as AC stuff, I've LOVE it. Send anything to and we will certainly post it.

April 9, 2007 1:14 AM Posted by mike_ch

I was talking to Mike about Trump, and how on the first (and only acceptable) season of The Apprentice, before it became an hour promotional for the sponsor, they would sell Trump's garbage and tchotkies and sort of advertise him instead. My favorite episode was selling "Trump Ice" water, which is bottled water with Trump's mug (in his usual glare) on the label.

I won't go on the details, but he sent people out to restaurants and clubs to try and convince them to buy Trump water at an increased price because it's worth it since Trump's face is on the label. It put me in stitches and easily explains everything I hate about Trump at the same time.

I haven't bothered to listen to the podcast yet, but since it sounds like you cook the guy over an open fire I'll listen post-haste.

April 9, 2007 8:37 AM Posted by Hunter

I totally remember that episode and it is EXACTLY what I'm talking about.

BTW, I believe I read somewhere that it turns out the water came from some city water main in NJ.

April 9, 2007 11:05 AM Posted by Tom M

Only Trump has the balls to sell NJ city water for a premium. I think he made up a bunch of Trump brands in the first year of the Apprentice to see if he could expand the "branding" of his name and give the apprentice candidates projects to work on(for free of course). I frankly, don't get too excited about bottled water of any kind, whether it is Trump, Perrier or Pelligrino et al. I don't see paying a premium for tap water. When is the Hunter brand coming out :)

April 9, 2007 2:11 PM Posted by mike_ch

Ah, well if you've seen that episode, maybe you'll remember my favorite line of the show:

"I am a big connoisseur of water." - You know who, I'm not going to type her name here because she probably Googles her name and uses the number of returned hits to sell herself on additional reality TV shows.

That's my favorite puff-up phrase ever, since who over the age of 12 is not well acquainted with bottled water? "Water connoisseurs" has become one of my Vegas in-jokes, referring to casino visitors who think they're more important than they really are. For instance, STACK seems usually full of water connoisseurs on Friday nights. Yeah, it won't catch on like "The Vegas," but since it's an insult that's sort of the point.

April 9, 2007 2:26 PM Posted by Hunter

Oh man, that's the worst. I do vaguely recall that bit from the episode. That's just too much.

April 10, 2007 11:38 AM Posted by Tom M

Wow, I had actually forgotten about Ms O until I read your submission. Thanks for memories! Now I will have to drink myself to sleep to try and forget again :)

April 13, 2007 8:58 PM Posted by josh

Are there any renderings of the Venetian room renovations? or and pictures?
Im planning to stay there in late may...will any of the renovated rooms be completed by then?

April 13, 2007 9:56 PM Posted by Hunter

No significant work will be done in time for your stay - sorry!

April 18, 2007 12:04 PM Posted by Mike P.

There is work in progress at the Venetian, and a host told me some of the high end suites have been renovated. Not the one we're staying in, unfortunately.

On the Venetian restaurant front a couple new ones have opened on "restaurant row" and Lutece has been replaced by a room offering "authentic Asian cuisine." From a look at the menu I'd say they've definitely not made too many concessions to American tastes. I've passed by lonely looking hostesses a couple times -- I suspect that location is doomed as a restaurant.

Mike P.