Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

May 21, 2007

Luxor May 2007 - I'd Rather Stay in a Tent

Posted by Hunter

I'm at Luxor for a convention for a few days - it's been awhile since I've stayed here and I've never been that impressed. Stlll, this place has fallen off even more than how I last remember it. My room smells bad, a bed that looks like it came from a military barracks and not even an in-room safe. Wow - the parking lot is probably more hospitable.

MGM Mirage has a TON of work to do if they want to make this place into any sort of a worthwhile endeavor. Honestly, I'm blown away with how bad this room is. Wow.


Read archived comments (21 so far)
May 21, 2007 10:50 PM Posted by Mike P.

Heh. We had to make a last minute business trip to LV and ended up at the Monte Carlo, which wouldn't have been in my top 5 or 10 choices if the whole town weren't booked. I'm not offended by the place though, except for the casino which is a not so vast wasteland of sucker bets. The room is OK except for the pervasive smoke odor and the legendary noisy plumbing.

May 21, 2007 11:17 PM Posted by mike_ch

Did you pick the tower where they've actually been renovating rooms?

May 21, 2007 11:20 PM Posted by mike_ch

I just realized how flippant that question sounded, but really, I last stayed at Luxor in, uh, 2004, in the tower. It wasn't bad. Haven't seen the pyramid rooms since 2002, but knew they were old then and still not changed now.

Really, if you've got the time, I'd love to meet and experience this terrible room you're talking about (or if nothing else let me joyride on the inclinator and snap a few nice shots) but if that's not in the cards I understand.

May 21, 2007 11:54 PM Posted by Hunter

I'm in the pyramid, on the 7th floor - the hotel is totally sold out and couldn't handle any of my requests (i.e. non-smoking, king bed).

Not to shatter Luxor's security profile but it looks like they took the guards out of the inclinator lobbies.

Mike_ch, yeah, if you want to see the room, I'm sure that'd be fine. Email me and we'll talk schedule.

May 22, 2007 3:37 AM Posted by sharky

View of the Sphinx's hindquarters perhaps?

Best post title ever BTW.

May 22, 2007 8:43 AM Posted by motoman

Y'know, Luxor does kind of look like a tent....

Seriously, mike_ch is right, the Tower rooms were always nicer. I've said I once liked the place but that was in the way early days. When I saw the extensive de-theming in January, it was clear the place has become a ghetto. Still tourists standing for photos at the big Egyptian statues by the entrance, though.

mike_ch, looking fwd to those pics, as always.

May 22, 2007 4:05 PM Posted by Leonard Stern

Hunter: After "experiencing" the wonderful accommodations offered at the existing Luxor, do you now wonder why Veldon Simpson has NOT designed, or even been commissioned, for any 'major' project, other than "architect of record" for MGM Grand II? My father, who was the 'consulting' architect on that project told me he made more money as a "consultant" on (this, his last project) than ANY other in his entire 50 year career due to the fact that he was NOT exposed to the E&O (Errors + Omissions insurance liability) since the MGM Grand (Bally's) horrific fire back in 1981. Luxor offered [Simpson] tremendous interior design opportunities that were never realized. Whether or not it was a result of Circus' budget limitations or not, that property had really great potential + unfortunately it ended up as an architectural disaster. Other than the Burj Al-Arab in Dubai, the Luxor holds the record for the second largest enclosed atrium hotel in the world.

May 22, 2007 4:07 PM Posted by Hunter

I've stayed here before in the past, though not for a few years.

I can say that things seem to have really fallen off - it's much worse than I remember. It's like an army barracks.

May 22, 2007 4:14 PM Posted by mike_ch

If Hunter's room sucks, it sucks. If it hasn't been cleaned in a week, it hasn't been cleaned in a week. It doesn't matter who was contracted to design where the walls go, it's the space inside those walls that are terrible.

Architecture isn't going to make a bad room better. I wouldn't sleep in a 10 year old hotel room even if Frank L Wright built the place.

May 22, 2007 5:39 PM Posted by MasterE

I have stayed in the Luxor five times since it opened and it has been on a steady decline since then. The last time (4 years ago) was the last time I would ever consider staying there. I was asked to fill in for someone working at a convention that my Family was putting on at the Man-Delay Bay. Since things were kind of last minute, I didn�t complain about having to say at the Luxor and was given a ground floor room in the Tower. Since I had to get up at 6am the next day, the first thing I did went I got to my room was call for a wakeup call � at least I tried to but I found that the phone in my room didn�t work. I made the short hike to the Front Desk who seemed confused by my situation � the clerk told me that they didn�t have anyone to fix the phone on the weekend and then asked me �So do you want the wakeup call or not ?�
But the story doesn�t end there � I go out to dinner with some friends and when I return to my room there is a loud high pitched wine or hum, the kind some travel alarms make, after a hour of detective work, I eventually track down to the idling bus which is park directly outside my window. I pick up the phone, only to be reminded by that lack of dial tone that I needed to do all my communication with the Front desk in person. A second short hike and I was met by the night manager, who assured me that he would call Security and have it taken care of. I return to my room and 30 mins later true to his word, a Security guard drives up to the Bu, get�s out and starts to have words with the Driver. In a few moments, the two of them are sitting on the still idling Bus having a few beers (did I mention that the bus was parked Right outside my window ?). I give them another hour to �talk out the issue� before storming down to the Front desk yet a third time (it�s now around 3:30 am and to say that I was upset was an understatement). I ask to see the Night Manager and am told that �he isn�t available�, so I get the fun of explaining everything to a new person who informs me that �This isn�t really a problem because the buses are taking people out on sightseeing tours at five am, so they will be gone in an hour or so� and that �The buses need to run their engines to keep them warm�. She was either completely unable to comprehend why I would be so upset OR she had the best poker face I�ve ever seen.

The punch line was when I was checking out that next evening, after not getting any sleep and having to stand all day (to say I was cranky was an understatement) and I asked to see the Manger. After yet another opportunity to explain this misadventure to him, I asked what he could do to try and salvage an awful evening � his response �I don�t see any real problem on our part, we don�t own the buses. Was there anything else ?�

That really showed me how much the Luxor valued me as a customer � not only will I never stay there again, but I tell everyone who talks about going to the Luxor how much fun I had the last time I stayed there.

May 22, 2007 6:04 PM Posted by detroit1051

MGM bought Mandalay Resort Group in 2004. I'm glad it wasn't MGM that caused MasterE all the trouble. I'm sure it wasn't funny, but the story made me laugh.
So, what has MGM done in three years to maintain or improve the property? From Hunter's report and other comments, MGM hasn't been any better than MBG in caring for Luxor.

May 22, 2007 6:42 PM Posted by mike_ch

They've removed some tackier pieces of decoration, renovated the tower rooms, shut down RA, got rid of Keno and put the Players Club desk there, replacing Isis with a new gourmet room, struck the Criss Angel deal, and replaced Nefertiti's lounge with the new Aurora lounge just the other month. There's construction walls currently up around the Nile Bar, RA, the shops that used to be between those two, the Hamada of Japan in the corner, and the elevated casino section that used to house Isis and Sacred Sea Room is closed. There's a new high limit area and the old high limit area is awaiting to be transformed into a new bar. The Pyramid Cafe got an extremely minor renovation late last year.

Unfortunately, it seems that the staffing is the same, and MGM really needs to improve employee training on almost all levels at these properties. First you have these Luxor experiences, I had a bad experience last week at Mandalay and I've heard of similar experiences (including managers who ask you what they should do about your problem) at Monte Carlo.

...And, on top of that, MGM seems content to let Mandalay Bay show it's age in ways that don't happen at Mirage or MGM Grand.

Almost all of this has been covered in my updates and emails, Detroit. Didn't you get the one I sent on Wednesday? :)

May 22, 2007 7:45 PM Posted by detroit1051

"Almost all of this has been covered in my updates and emails, Detroit. Didn't you get the one I sent on Wednesday? :)"
Sorry, I had a Senior Moment. Yes, I did get your report, Mike_ch, and I read all your updates.
Your list in this thread shows MGM has done a lot but there's still a lot left to do.
I'm not sure I've been in Luxor since it opened about 15 years ago whenI went there to take the Nile Boat Ride. I remember wondering whether the Nile in Eqypt also smelled like chlorine.
The closest I've been since was the Burger Bar between Mandalay Bay and Luxor.

May 24, 2007 6:32 AM Posted by Heff

Mandalay Bay has upgraded their rooms, top to bottom, and is still a great destination. These properties have been overrun with people since they opened, so it's not suprising to see the wear and tear so soon.Luxor is another story altogether, it's definitely headed in the direction of Excalibarn. Nothing like a bomb going off your parking garage to add to the charm.

May 24, 2007 11:51 AM Posted by mike_ch

Heff, I wouldn't hold that situation against them. The man who hatched that plot in the parking lot had been kicked out of the casino many times before. He had a beef with a woman who worked at Luxor, allegedly had a child with him but then left him for the victim of the event. The man had harassed her enough times for security to just kick him out on sight anymore, so he left that device on the car.

Having seen Hunter's trashy room first-hand (even the alarm clock isn't working, what the..) I commented that Excalibur would likely have been better than that, guaranteed so if you got one of the brand new widescreen rooms (which would come out for about the same price since they like to charge a small premium for Luxor.)

May 24, 2007 1:20 PM Posted by DavidF.

It does look like all the Ex-Mandalay Resort Group Hotels are not being given priority, I am sure someone here will correct me, but IMHO the Mandalay Bay was refurbished out of necessity as it gets a lot of convention business.

My wife stayed at THE Hotel in March,(it was a �Girls� Trip to Vegas before you wonder why no T.R. I can�t write what I didn�t go to :o) Anyway bearing in mind this was Mandalay Groups �Flagship�, yet she found the Room to be �Tired� and service distinctly lacking, throughout, from Reception, through Housekeeping to the Concierge, definitely compared to High End Properties on the Strip. I have seen several other reviews that appear to reflect this and I remember when the place opened it was lauded for setting high standards throughout.

On top of that unless I am mistaken, since the initial news of THEPlace in March things have been very quiet on that front since the Plans were submitted last August.

I do wonder if this apparent �lack of interest� in former Mandalay Properties is related to the MGM news announced earlier this week?

May 24, 2007 2:09 PM Posted by mike_ch

I stayed at THEhotel in December 05 and there was a big coffee stain on the living room rug and what appeared to be a blood splat on the wall by the door. Service didn't seem to care.

I don't think CC/MB Resorts ever did as good a job as they should at employee training, I have met a few good people at Luxor and MB in the past eight years but I've also seen a lot of incompetence. I think Glenn Schaeffer brought a lot of interesting ideas to the table and I want to see what he's dreamed up at Fontainbleu or however it's spelled, but it seems he never really improved employee training/treatment much further than what CC already had. That's why he couldn't reach that goal of matching what Wynn's joints were doing. We'll see how things go with an all new staff in a few years.

Mandalay Bay itself though is aging faster than it's being kept up. I wouldn't be surprised to find out it's maintenance budget got cut because it's getting a bit obvious and it's no longer a flagship on the ol' corporate totem pole, the third wheel behind Bellagio and MGM Grand, maybe even the fourth wheel now that Mirage is posting good ROI.

May 28, 2007 1:52 PM Posted by cinenaut

I stayed at Luxor for five days in mid-April, my first time staying at that property (I've stayed at Hilton and IP previously). The check-in was quick and polite, room service was prompt and polite, and my tower room was clean, didn't smell, and in good condition. The parts of the hotel that I saw weren't dirty, with the exception of a cigarette burn on a lampshade in the hall leading to the east tower elevators. Based on what I'd read here and on other sites, I was expecting a much less pleasant experience, but frankly, in comparison to my last stay in LV at the Hilton, Luxor was heads above. Guess it's fortunate that I was there on a good week.

May 28, 2007 5:17 PM Posted by Hunter

Glad you had a nice time. I think most people that end up in the Tower portion are happier than the Pyramid - they've let it go quite a bit on that side.

I will say that my room service food was actually really good, so points for that!

May 28, 2007 9:55 PM Posted by motoman

Perhaps I was harsh in calling it a ghetto. "Under construction" is probably more appropriate. Although, one would expect more obvious signs of progress. Understandably, MGM Mirage has a full plate right now.

I just thought it said something when there was a ghost town atmosphere between the bustle of Mandalay and the crowds in Excalibur's casino on a Sat. night.

April 26, 2008 6:41 PM Posted by Marcos Ruiz

Bad and sad is the only way to describe our trip. The facilities are not well kept or maintained properly. It appears as of money is the only focus for management at the Luxor. Our check in time was so long� over 25 minutes� the room was dirty and not worth the over $280.00 a night for the �Luxury Spa Suite�� after our complains fell into deaf ears as all they wanted to do is give us coupons for some crappy buffet� in light that it was my wife�s b-day we check ourselves into the Marriott and that was the only thing that saved the weekend. I gladly paid the extra money in the Marriot and after we complained, a supervisor who would not give us his name but promised to cancel the bill for the two nights that we did not stayed there� well guess what? My MasterCard bill came in last week and what surprise!!! They charge me the whole thing!!! Even the crappy buffets!!!
Now, some rep from the hotel sent me a boiler template where the text in the body of the letter is so different from the font in the name that once I pointed that out to them they had now choose to complete ignore my case� I guess that shows how valuable we are to them and how much attention to detail they put into things. Several letters have been sent still no response but the fact that they have a boiler template already typed and ready to go tells me that complains are an everyday thing� in in the one ear out of the other.
Do yourselves a favor and go somewhere else, don�t believe their empty promises.