Monday, January 22, 2018

West Wynn

When Steve Wynn purchased the former Alon / Frontier land last month nobody really knew what he was going to do with it. The common thought was that Wynn would sit on the land and save it for development sometime in the distant future.

Turns out Steve wants to build, and build fast. Wynn Resorts wants to develop this land (along with their Golf Course / Paradise Park project) as fast as possible and is going full speed ahead on Las Vegas development.

Wynn will be building a two to three thousand room new hotel on the Alon land in a project they are calling West Wynn. Steve has been thinking about this project for a long time, and always thought he would end up acquiring the property.

The West Wynn property (or is it Wynn West?) will be connected to Wynn proper via an air conditioned walkway over the Las Vegas Strip.

Steve Wynn's bullishness on Las Vegas seems to be sparked by the new tax reform bill, along with the company's strong results in Macau.

With Wynn looking to build, this could be the much needed boost for the North Strip we've been waiting for. If Resorts World and Fontainebleau (now Project Blue) get underway the North Strip could become a lot more exciting.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

The Londoner Macao Announced

Las Vegas Sands today announced the redevelopment of Sands Cotai Central into a new European themed resort called The Londoner Macao.

The $1.1 billion project will rebrand Sands Cotai Central into a new destination integrated resort. The Londoner "will feature dynamic new attractions and features from London including some of London's most recognizable landmarks, an expanded and reimagined retail mall and 350 luxurious new suites, the St Regis Tower Suites."

The high level of investment on the Cotai Strip shows the strength of the Macanese market, which was down in previous years but has since been making a strong recovery.

Unfortunately it doesn't look like Sands has any intention of building anything new in Las Vegas anytime soon other than their announced music arena.

I would like to see them do something with the stalled St. Regis building on the Las Vegas Strip which is currently unfinished, but it seems they are content with leaving it as-is for now.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Fontainebleau Sale Rumors Heat Up MGM Call

Rumors about a sale of Fontainebleau are nothing new. It's been over a year since the last round of speculation about who could possibly buy the property and maybe open it someday. Back then a sale was expected by the end of summer 2016.

Needless to say that never happened and we've been in a holding pattern ever since.

The lack of news about Fontainebleau made today's MGM Resorts International earnings call that much more surprising. Seemingly out of the blue Carlo Santarelli, Wall Street analyst at Deutsche Bank asked CEO Jim Murren about the property and how long it would take for a company to get it up and running.

Murren joked about the "rumor" and indicated MGM was not interested in the property, but speculated it would take 2 or 3 years for the resort to be operational. He also commented about Fontainebleau possibly being in a good location once the expanded convention center is finished, and thus would be more focused on the lodging aspect of the resort (rather than say gaming).

It's probably true that MGM isn't buying Fontainebleau, although it might be an interesting project for their MGM Growth Properties REIT subsidiary. Either way, hearing this chatter in the middle of the earnings call definitely got my attention. It seems like somebody knows something about a transaction happening soon. Or maybe they don't. The waiting game continues.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Wynn Second Quarter 2017 Earnings

Wynn Resorts released second quarter 2017 earnings today and held their earnings conference call. Revenue and net income were both up year over year due to the addition of Wynn Palace in Macau and helped by higher hold percentage in both Las Vegas and Macau.

Steve Wynn discussed the plans for the redevelopment of the Wynn golf course in Las Vegas. It appears that plans for the course are on track and drawings are being finalized.

The golf course will be redeveloped to include a lagoon along with new hotel rooms and convention space.

Steve Wynn commented that this land is extremely valuable due to its proximity to the Las Vegas Convention Center along with the Sands Expo Center.

Wynn also updated operations in Macau. Wynn Palace is doing well but is currently being somewhat adversely affected by construction at the neighboring MGM Cotai resort being built.

Back stateside Wynn Boston Harbor opening date will be in 2019 with construction now well underway. The company is also buying more property in the Boston / Everett area with an eye on future expansion.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Raiders Relocation Announcement Imminent

The Oakland Raiders are set to file relocation paperwork officially announcing their intention to move to Las Vegas according to a report by Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.

The move would need to be approved by a vote of 24/32 league owners which would take place in March. It's not clear how the owners would react to a move to Las Vegas, but it seems like previous concerns of gambling might be lessened now that casinos are present in many of the leagues cities.

Financing of a new stadium appears to still be up in the air. Original plans would call for a new room tax in combination with funds from Sheldon Adelson, but the Raiders have been looking to secure alternate financing as well. With the decision to file relocation papers it looks like they're confident financing for the stadium will come through someway, somehow.

In addition to the Raiders playing in the new stadium, being in Las Vegas opens it up to entertainment like music festivals and concerts. I could also see large conventions taking place on the domed stadium floor. Other sporting events like UNLV football, Soccer, and the Final Four could be possibilities as well.

With Las Vegas looking to expand and diversify their entertainment portfolio, having pro sports teams and the accompanying stadiums would seem to fit into those plans perfectly.