Saturday, February 05, 2011

Las Vegas Sands cuts Comps

In a conference call on Thursday, Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Adelson stated that the company has cut comps at Venetian and Palazzo, instead charging full price for hotel rooms:

"We've essentially cut all of our comps except our most highly-rated players. No more comped rooms. No food and beverage. No showroom credits. We're selling rooms. We see it's resulting in a substantial increase in cash income."

Las Vegas Sands focuses heavily on convention bookings. Bookings have evidently been strong lately, so they apparently don't feel the need to lure in average customers with free rooms.

It's an interesting strategy. While I'm not sure I would have made such a bold statement to the public about cutting comps, if they can fill their rooms and still charge full price, why wouldn't they?

If MGM or Caesars had done this I think it probably would have been a bad move, but LVS only has 2 hotels in Las Vegas and they're making more money overseas anyway, so I think they can get away with it.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

How the Bellagio Bandit was Caught

If you follow Las Vegas closely you've probably heard about the man who robbed the Bellagio of some $1.5 million in chips and then escaped on a motorcycle. The robbery took place on December 14th. Today it was announced that an arrest had been made in the case.

According to the arrest report, the alleged robber made several mistakes that led to him being caught:

-Before the robbery, while playing poker he spoke to a Bellagio dealer indicating that he wanted to rob a casino and thought he could get away with it.

-After the robbery, he immediately gambled heavily at Bellagio. This activity was tracked by Currency Transaction Reports (used to track cash transactions over $10,000) and was also tracked because the robber was using HIS OWN PLAYERS CARD.

-He admitted to several of his poker buddies that he committed the robbery.

-He STAYED AT BELLAGIO for several nights after the robbery using his new high roller status - fully comped Room, Food and Beverage (RFB).

-He went on poker message boards and privately chatted with people about ways to unload the stolen chips.

-The final straw - he sold chips to an undercover police officer AT THE BELLAGIO where he was arrested.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Las Vegas Chinese New Year Decorations

Chinese New Year is a big deal in Las Vegas. Many high rollers come from the far east to celebrate the new year, which begins on February 3rd this year. The upcoming year will be the year of the rabbit.

Check out how some of the major hotels decorate for Chinese New Year (photos are from each hotel's twitter and facebook pages):

Caesars Palace:

MGM Grand:




Wynn Las Vegas:


Monday, January 31, 2011

Las Vegas still Losing Money

Despite some signs of a recovery in Las Vegas, new numbers put out today by the Nevada Gaming Commission suggest that the city is still struggling to make money.

Including everything (gaming, rooms, food, beverage, and "other") major Clark County establishments lost $3.36 billion for Fiscal Year 2010 (July-June).

This is slightly better than last year when the total loss was $6.5 billion, but revenue was down for 2010 ($18.24 billion compared to $19.2 billion in 2009)

When things were going good in Las Vegas, income by major Clark County establishments topped $2 billion in Fiscal Year 2007.

Source: Nevada Gaming Commission Abstract Reports.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sugar Factory Food Looks Great

The new Sugar Factory restaurant at Paris Las Vegas is opening on March 4th. Paris posted a few pics of some of the menu items on their facebook page, and everything looks really, really good.

Credit: Paris Las Vegas Facebook.