Two Way Hard Three | Las Vegas Casino & Design Blog

All Articles Published: July 2008

July 29, 2008

Motoman's July 2008 Trip Report

Posted by Hunter

Regular reader motoman has been kind enough to share with us a report of a recent trip. Here's Moto:

"What follows is a fairly lengthy report about a fairly mundane trip (certainly not up to Mike E standards, but then, who could top that? ;-) It's roughly chronological but each paragraph has its own subject, so feel free to follow along, skip ahead, or skip completely as you prefer, after the jump."

Mike Ch is back again with his Strip Walk column. This time around, he shows us what's going on at The Mirage, Bellagio, City Center, Caesars and more.

Personally, I think that new entrance at The Mirage looks terrible - that sign is totally out of place.


This time we feature:

* Wynn Financials and Conference Call

* The Sahara and Sam Nazarian

* Steve Wynn vs. Bloggers

* UNLV Casino Gaming Study

* Consolidation in the Gaming Industry

The show is available via iTunes or here:

Feel free to comment below. Thanks for listening.

July 25, 2008

Lots of Vegas Podcasts Out There

Posted by Hunter

With the Vegas Podcast-a-palooza coming up in August, Chuck at VegasTripping has posted a list of Vegas and gambling related podcasts. It's a good list and reminder of all the great shows out there.

A lot of them are shows I haven't heard. I was a guest on This Ain't Iowa (nice guys) once but other than that, I have some catching up to do with some of these other shows.

Despite a softening Las Vegas market, Wynn Resorts pulled through with some strong company-wide numbers.

According to the Company: "Net revenues for the second quarter of 2008 were $825.2 million, compared to $687.5 million in the second quarter of 2007. The revenue increase was driven primarily by a 50.3% increase in revenues at Wynn Macau."

I'll have to listen to the conference call later - if there's anything good in there, I'll update the post.

Update: Listening to the call now - as Jeff indicates below, classic Wynn on display in the call. Lots of fun to listen to as he takes jabs at various parties - and he has the numbers to back him.

July 24, 2008

Trump Tower LV Laying Off 20% of Workers

Posted by Hunter

KVBC is reporting that Trump Tower in Las Vegas, the condo project from The Donald, is laying off 20% of its workforce.

This comes shortly after an article from Steve Friess where he predicted doom and gloom for the golden clad property.

I stayed there this Spring and while I'm not interested in going back, we had a nice time.

Thanks to Mike for shooting me the story this AM.

Here's a KLAS interview with Steve Wynn covering the Encore hiring, his take on City Center, Encore itself and more...,%20Jobs

Thanks to Chuck at VT for pointing this out.

Greenspun owned has launched a mobile site for cell phones and smart phones featuring show and event info, as well as some hotel and restaurant data. They also have a text messaging interface for some cell data.

It seems like a reasonable first effort, though the mobile site does require a ton of link clicking/tapping to get to the goods. I expect it to improve and maybe someday be the primary driver of their business.

Anyone that's followed this site for any period of time knows that I'm pretty bullish on mobile for stuff like this. I've had a cell phone/BlackBerry site for 2 years, an iPhone optimized site for one year and in maybe a month or so, a native iPhone app that integrates with the GPS for even more 'wow' factor (I was just going over icons with the designer today).

July 18, 2008

Palazzo Restaurants Reviewed (Part One)

Posted by Hunter

This link made the rounds last week and I didn't post it but I've been enjoying this blog so much, I now feel like I need to share.

If you love Vegas food, this is a site to visit regularly (or subscribe via RSS).

July 18, 2008

Nazarian Has Big Plans for The Sahara

Posted by Hunter

Today's Wall Street Journal (subscription required) has a great article on Sam Nazarian, new owner of The Sahara.

He wants to provide a superior experience, even for guests priced out of the market by the swing to luxury offerings - he plans rooms at about $200 a night. That doesn't mean implosion - he wants to work with the canvas he has, while adding to it and improving it.

It's a great read, check it out.

July 14, 2008

Open Topic Discussion - July 14, 2008

Posted by detroit1051

This week's Zoning meetings:

LVS is asking for a time extension on its approval to build a new Convention Center. The Agenda item says LVS is in the process of obtaining permits, but could the economy be a reason?
Las Vegas Sands Convention Center

Wynn has requested a deviation for Encore's signage:
Encore's Signage

July 12, 2008

Vegas Gang #12 - July 11th, 2008

Posted by Hunter

The show is up:

This time we feature:

* Wynn Hires Tim and Tim / Wynn Early Financials
* Nevada and Illinois Post Bad Numbers
* Tropicana E.Coli Outbreak
* Don Barden / Pittsburgh
* MGM Mirage / Wynn Resorts Market Cap

Comments welcome below.

Don't forget the Podcast-a-palooza:

July 12, 2008

Will Winslow's Guide to Las Vegas

Posted by Hunter

Dave Schwartz, fellow Gang member and Die is Cast blogger has released the latest 'Winslow's Guide'.

If you love Las Vegas, you'll love this guide.

July 11, 2008

UPDATED: Strange "Hack" Story

Posted by Hunter

My friend Steve Friess posted a story on his blog about a supposed "hack" at that supposedly offered illegitimate low rates to customers.

Based on the email that went out afterwords, MGM Grand handed this poorly.

Also, I agree with Steve - based on all I know from years of building Web applications for e-commerce, this sounds like BS to me... If it is true, they were likely penetrated extremely deeply, which would be even worse. Just own the mistake and honor the rates already!

Updated: Steve has more details - not a 'hack' - just a promotion that was used by those it was not intended to be offered to. Still, maybe not the best handling?

Just saw this fly across the wire - Wynn Resorts has announced preliminary 2nd Quarter results:

Operating income at Wynn Las Vegas is expected to be $18-22 million, down from $63.4 million last year. Wow, big drop. Looks like they are blaming it on lower hold percentages, lower ADR, and lower occupancy.

On the other end, Wynn Macau did much better than last year it seems with operating income almost doubling to $100 million or so.

The company also announced they will be buying back more shares.

I've been dropping hints for a few weeks and we can finally announce the event! The "Vegas Podcast-a-palooza" will be taking place on August 16th at the Palms in Las Vegas.

What is this event you might ask?

Live versions of Five Hundy By Midnight, The Strip Podcast and The Vegas Gang!

All the details are here:

I also need to give a big round of applause to Steve Friess for help with getting things setup, The Palms for hosting the event and taking a chance on a new idea, and to Chuck at for designing the fantastic info page.

Please, check out the page above and consider coming to the show - we really want a strong, lively audience there at The Palms.

Mike's returning with a new Strip Walk. This time we see Fontainebleau, Encore, Echelon, City Center, Luxor and more.

Keep reading after the jump and check out his photos:

July 8, 2008

Treasure Island 2008 Review at

Posted by Hunter

My good friend and fellow Vegas Gang member, Chuck at has posted an updated review of Treasure Island.

I used to stay at TI all the time and I used to recommend it as a great value. That was before the hotel went through massive transformations a few years back... The rates have gone up so it's less affordable than it was but there are still some good things about TI. I really like Isla and I am interested to try Social House. Mystere is still a show I recommend all the time.

Anyway, check out Chuck's review:

July 2, 2008

Tim Poster and Tom Breitling Join Wynn Resorts

Posted by Mike E

A surprising bit of news this morning.

"LAS VEGAS, July 2 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Tim Poster and Tom Breitling will be joining Wynn Resorts (Nasdaq: WYNN - News) subsidiary Wynn Las Vegas as Sr. Vice Presidents of Strategy and Development."