Monday, July 25, 2016

Sands Arena Opening Late 2018 or Early 2019

Las Vegas Sands reported their second quarter 2016 earnings earlier this afternoon.

As usual most of the earnings conference call centered on the company's primary casino operations in Macau and Singapore, but there was one tidbit about Las Vegas:

The Sands music arena which will be built with Madison Square Garden will begin construction in early 2017.

The arena located behind Venetian and Palazzo will take 18 to 24 months to build, which means the opening date will be Late 2018 or early 2019.

I suppose that timeline is perfectly reasonable for a new arena to be constructed, but 2019 seems like a long way off. I was looking forward to the Sands arena and T-Mobile Arena squaring off and competing for top musical acts, but I guess we'll have to wait a few years.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Riviera Monaco Tower Implosion

The first of two Riviera implosions took place this morning as the Monaco Tower was taken down. A series of fireworks and live musical performances marked the occasion as onlookers flooded the sidewalks to see the tower fall.


Video: Jay Brannan.

Riviera's Monte Carlo Tower will be imploded later this summer. It was delayed after asbestos was discovered.

Friday, June 03, 2016

Park MGM is new Monte Carlo Name

Monte Carlo will be renamed Park MGM as part of a $450 million remodeling project. The new name was announced in an MGM Resorts International press release earlier today.

The property will also feature a "hotel within a hotel" concept with NoMad Hotel occupying a small portion of the rooms. NoMad will be operated by the New York City based Sydell Group.

It's unclear what will happen to Monte Carlo's current "hotel within a hotel" concept Hotel 32.

Re-naming Monte Carlo after the adjacent Park promenade was a fairly predictable move, but attaching the MGM brand to the property is kind of a head–scratcher.

While I understand "MGM" is a valuable brand name to the company, having two different properties on the same street with MGM in the name could become pretty confusing.

I could see a drunk tourist who cant remember the exact name of the hotel telling a cabbie to take him to MGM which would probably get him dropped off at MGM Grand.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

MGM buys Borgata - Monte Carlo Rename Next?

Boyd Gaming has agreed to sell its 50% ownership stake of The Borgata in Atlantic City to MGM Resorts International for a purchase price of $900 million. MGM was already the owner of the other 50% stake, however Boyd was the operator of the hotel and casino.

The announcement was made via separate MGM Resorts and Boyd Gaming press releases.

After the sale is complete MGM Resorts will transfer ownership of The Borgata to their real estate subsidiary MGM Growth Properties. The MGP REIT will then lease the property back to MGM, who will operate the hotel and casino. Borgata will become an M Life Rewards property.

This transaction doesn't have a direct impact on Las Vegas, but there's an interesting wrinkle. Now that MGM owns 100% of The Borgata I assume they are free to use "Borgata" as a brand name in Las Vegas.

Last year it was announced that Monte Carlo would be getting a name change. I had speculated that Borgata Las Vegas would be a great name for Monte Carlo. MGM's purchase of The Borgata today takes that unlikely scenario one step closer to reality.

Update - June 3, 2016: I guess it wasn't meant to be. The new name of Monte Carlo is Park MGM.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Support Las Vegas Dome Video

The Oakland Raiders have been talking about moving to Las Vegas. A new hotel tax would pay for much of the proposed new stadium, with the Raiders and Sheldon Adelson picking up the rest of the tab.

Adelson and Las Vegas Sands look to be stepping up their live entertainment game. A new football stadium would complement the new music arena that was announced yesterday.

The location for the stadium is still in question. An announced UNLV site near Tropicana Avenue looks less and less likely. Sands is pushing for the former Riviera site because they don't want the competing convention center to be expanded. Downtown Las Vegas might also be on the table.

While I still think the Raiders to Las Vegas is a longshot, talks are getting more and more serious by the day. A new video was released on YouTube by an organization called "Support Las Vegas Dome" which shows a variety of community leaders and football people (including Raiders owner Mark Davis) talking about how great a stadium in Las Vegas would be.