Saturday, October 10, 2015

Pawn Plaza Opens

One of the more unexpected Las Vegas development projects is Pawn Plaza. It's a mini shopping center right next to the Gold and Silver Pawn Shop which was made famous by the television show Pawn Stars.

The pawn shop has become so much of a tourist attraction because of the TV show that a strip mall was essentially built to take advantage of overflow crowds.

The pawn shop is located in a non-touristy area, so building coffee shops, bars, and restaurants where people can go before or after visiting the gift, I mean pawn shop is a good idea... I guess.

I'm just wondering what's going to happen when the heat from the TV show dies down, and they're left with a (somewhat) upscale shopping center in the middle of a not-so-upscale neighborhood.

Pawn Plaza celebrated a grand opening Friday night complete with celebrity guests including presidential candidate Marco Rubio.

Friday, October 09, 2015

M Resort Pink Blackjack Table

M Resort has pink felted blackjack tables this October for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Blackjack pays 3:2!

Photo: M Resort Twitter.

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Lisa Marchese signs Cosmo Extension

Lisa Marchese has signed a deal which will keep her in her role as Chief Marketing Officer at Cosmopolitan for at least three years.

Marchese will earn a base salary of 400k a year, with a potential for up to 50% more in bonuses according to a filing with the SEC.

Lisa Marchese is responsible for booking many of the musical acts which have put Cosmopolitan on the map, including a newly announced Bruno Mars New Year's Eve show.

Having her continue to serve as Chief Marketing Officer is a definite plus for Cosmo, as she seems to have a good feel for attracting the "curious class" demographic they have become known for.

She's even been able to get more gamblers in the door as well, if the latest Cosmopolitan quarterly report is any indication.

For more about Lisa Marchese and her musical bookings at Cosmopolitan, check out this Las Vegas Weekly interview from 2012.

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Bellagio Craps Inside Job Busted

Two former Bellagio craps dealers along with two accomplices were in court this week after they were busted cheating at a craps scheme carried out between 2012 and 2014. The group won over $1 million during that period.

An article in the RJ detailed the court proceedings.

The scam involved the players muttering unintelligible hop bets while the dice were being thrown. The dealers in on the scheme would then pay off the bets as if they were winners.

There was no place on the craps felt for hop bets at MGM Resort International properties at the time. That made it almost impossible for the "eye in the sky" to catch the illegal bets.

Ultimately another dealer noted the suspicious play and reported it to a supervisor. After a statistical analysis was done it was determined that odds of winning $1 million betting like these guys did was 1 in 452 billion.

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Sam Nazarian Sells SLS Las Vegas Stake

Sam Nazarian and his company SBE are selling their ten percent stake in SLS Las Vegas as reported by The Wall Street Journal.

Stockbridge Capital Partners will be purchasing SBE's stake and will now own 100% of the resort.

SBE will also be transferring management of the resort to Stockbridge, who will lease the SLS brand from SBE.

Nazarian and SBE were responsible for closing the historic Sahara hotel and transforming it into SLS. While SBE has a pretty good track record of hotel and nightclub management, they might have bit off more than they could chew with SLS Las Vegas.

The casino has struggled to attract gamblers, and the restaurants and nightclubs have received a tepid response from the public. Fred Segal, the exclusive SLS retail partner also packed up and left town.

Those struggles have led to a disastrous financial performance. According to SEC filings SLS has been losing money hand over fist which has caused Stockbridge to infuse cash to keep the hotel afloat. Some kind of management change had to happen after those results.

It will be interesting to see what Stockbridge will do now to turn things around. Some people think this move paves the way for a sale of SLS, but I think Stockbridge will at least attempt to right the ship before that happens.

Monday, October 05, 2015

Casino Royale Sportsbook

Casino Royale is getting a new sportsbook that will be operated by William Hill.

According to a William Hill press release, "the full-service William Hill Sports Book at Casino Royale will be part of an all-new sports bar in the heart of the casino, surrounded by popular outlets, such as Denny’s, Outback Steakhouse, Walgreens and White Castle."

I think the concept of combining a sports bar with a sportsbook is a no-brainer and we will likely see more of these, especially since third party operators like William Hill and CG Technology are well equipped to handle setups like this.

With the old O'Sheas relocated and Bill's converted into The Cromwell, Casino Royale is pretty much the only true low-roller casino left mid-Strip. I look forward to checking out this new sports bar / book combination while grabbing one of Casino Royale's signature $1 Michelob bottles.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Cody Saintgnue 1OAK Mirage Incident

There was an interesting article in the Review Journal about an incident that took place involving actor Cody Saintgnue at 1OAK nightclub at The Mirage last June.

Saintgnue is an actor on the MTV series Teen Wolf and has also had parts on Southland, House, and Criminal Minds. In a recent lawsuit he claims that he was assaulted by 1OAK and Mirage security after a dispute about his bill.

Saintgnue was allegedly invited into a VIP area but only stayed there for a few minutes. After leaving that area the nightclub tried to charge him exorbitant fees for entering that area, which Saintgnue refused to pay.

That's when he was escorted out of the club and allegedly told never to return to any MGM Resorts International property. Some of the incident can be seen in the this video: