las vegas Travel Guide
We scoped out the construction site yesterday hoping for some sneak peeks at the rooms or public spaces but the construction crews were still removing parts of the old Sahara and putting in newer foundations. Various parts of the buildings are also trying out some paint jobs and the entire site is wrapped in banner ads for the restaurants, bars and retail coming to the SLS (Umami burger! Fred Segal!)
Still, we won't be able to see much happening on this hotel for another few more months. Don't worry, if something does happen, VegasChatter will be all over it.
You know us. We love to be one of the first people inside a new hotel and that's what we're doing at the just-opened Downtown Grand hotel in downtown Las Vegas. The hotel has been soft-opened for about 10 days but it's official opening in 11.12.13. (See what they did there?)
The Downtown Grand has transformed the old Lady Luck into an "industrial chic" hotel and casino. But perhaps more importantly, DTG has also helped revitalize the block surrounding the property, nicknamed Downtown3rd, adding several restaurants across the street from the hotel. We were so impressed with the hotel's stylish boutique look and innovative eatery options, we almost forgot there's a 25,000-sq.ft. casino here too. This seems to be the way of Vegas these days with revenue from gambling constantly shrinking while revenue from shopping, restaurants and nightclubs keep growing.
But enough about that. Now onto the guest rooms at DTG....
Over the weekend, major, major, MAJOR hotel news happened--The Gansevoort Las Vegas, which was to be built from the remains of the Strip's Bill's Gambling Hall, was officially dropped by Caesars Entertainment. As VegasChatter reports, the why of it all is pretty messy. (When is it ever clean?)
Essentially, Caesars is eager to bring a new casino to Massachusetts but in doing their background checks, Massachusetts was not impressed with Caesars' Gansevoort project, namely because of an investor with alleged ties to the Russian mob. So Caesars, in an effort to appease Massachusetts, dropped the Gansevoort partnership. Buh-bye. Wipes hands.
So now, what will happen to the boutique hotel, which is currently under construction? Word is that it will move ahead with a new name (The "Real" Caesars Palace perhaps?) but the 188 sexy hotel rooms along with a rooftop nightclub and pool area created by Vegas club king, Victor Drai, and a restaurant from Food Network's Giada De Laurentiis will remain.
Not long after we wondered if anyone was still checking-out of hotels, we come across a sign in a hotel room offering a video check-out. "For your convenience."
On the bright side, the WiFi was included in the $18 (!) resort fee and it was blazing fast. So there's that. Needless to say, we didn't do a video check-out this morning.
This is what greeted us in the bathroom at Aria Las Vegas when we returned to the room in the afternoon--our toiletries, hairbrush and glass all lined up in perfect order. Gorgeous! It really is those little things that win us over.
This also made up for the fact that the next day, housekeeping busted in on us, while changing clothes, completely ignoring our calls of "no, please don't open the door." And as we were reaching desperately for the hotel robe, the housekeeper peeked her head around the door just to remind us that we had to check-out that day. It was only 9:15am and check-out was not until 11am. Alrighty then. At least our toiletries were easy to pack up.
There's a new resort on the verge of opening in Las Vegas. And, chances are, you've never heard of it. It's because this hotel-casino isn't headed for the famed Strip. No, this multi-million dollar property is about to debut in Downtown Vegas.
While every traveler can instantly picture the Vegas Strip, not as many can do the same when it comes to the city's downtown. That part of Las Vegas has long been home to cheap drinks, cheap gaming, and cheap rooms (see where this is going?) as well as a more relaxed 'everyman' attitude, but isn't usually on the must do list of most Vegas visitors who are more attracted to the (pricier) flash and dazzle of Las Vegas Boulevard.
The Four Seasons Las Vegas located atop the Mandalay Bay Hotel (floors 35-39) finished its much-needed room renovations back in December and we're happy to report, they look incredible. And maybe more importantly, they look true to the website photos.
Here's how the rooms at the Four Seasons Las Vegas used to look. Eeek! You can see more from the rooms here, if you dare.
And here's a pic from the Four Seasons website of a renovated standard room.
And now, here's our pic of a one-bedroom suite with a strip view that we toured last week.
Hardly any difference. In fact, we think our picture looks better.
The renovations went for an Art Deco vibe but has a cool contemporary feel with eye-catching artwork and furniture. Nearly every piece in the rooms from the dressers to the mirrors, the floor lamps and even the wallpaper carry a detailed pattern or intricate finish. And of course, all the modern technological conveniences we've come to expect from hotel rooms are included, such as giant flat-screen TVs, TVs in the bathrooms mirrors and the all-important deskside plug panel where you can hook up your gadgets. For those of you concerned about the toiletries (and we know you are) the Four Seasons Las Vegas uses Ecro toiletries.
We first stayed at Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas in late 2009 when it first opened. Back then, we said the service was "some of the best we've ever experienced." And after a recent trip to the non-gaming hotel, the same holds true.
The service was impeccable (shout out to Henry!), especially for a town like Vegas where there are thousands upon thousands of hotel rooms and not every staffer can fake their excitement at having you stay at their hotel. But the Mandarin Oriental employees are willing to make this the best hotel stay in Vegas. And now we're not so sure we can stay anywhere else.
We could go on for a while about all the reasons to stay here but let's keep it to the reasons why you won't want to leave. And they are:
· Killer Strip Views: Being adjacent to CityCenter, the hotel offers some spectacular views of the "new" Vegas. But don't worry, we could still spy the Eiffel Tower from our room on the 11th floor. And of course, the hotel has blackout shades.
· The Amenities: The rooms at Mandarin Oriental are still filled up with tons of amenities like the Technology Box with various cables and wires (sorry, no iPhone 5 chargers) to the Shanghai Tang toiletries in the bathroom and the Dean & DeLuca minibar items. Don't forget about the flat-iron, the loofah sponge, the bath salts, the yoga mats, the high-tech bedside control panels and the bottles of water on the nightstand. (Those are included in the $25 resort fee. So is the internet.)
· The Pillows: Each bed at the Mandarin Oriental comes equipped with two big pillows that were nearly the length of our own bodies. We hugged that pillow each night we
passed out came home and didn't let go until morning. As another married friend put it, "It's like sleeping with someone...without the guilt."
Finally, there's something to be jubilant bout at Bally's Las Vegas.
The resort casino just announced they will renovate the rooms in the South Tower, which will now go by the name The Jubilee Tower, in honor of the long-running Jubilee show at Bally's. The renovations will span all 756 guestrooms and suites and they will be ready for guests in the fall. Here's what to expect:
The fresh, new Jubilee Tower accommodations will encompass 450 square feet of living space with chic lounge furniture yielding a stylistic and welcoming atmosphere. Juxtaposed geometric patterns will create a contemporary feel, set with neutral tones and striking pops of red visible throughout decorative accents and fashionable wall coverings. Dark wood furnishings, a work desk and a 37-inch flat screen television will complete the space. Each room will also come equipped with a refrigerator and redesigned bathrooms that will feature spacious glass-enclosed showers.
Hallelujah! We and our sibling site, VegasChatter, have long though the rooms at Bally's were in desperate need of an upgrade. Especially the suites. Fortunately, we won't have very long to wait to check out the new look. VegasChatter reports that they should be ready by November 1. If you're antsy, you can even book one of these rooms right now. Rates will start at $99 a night (not including the $18 resort fee. )
[Hilariously Photoshopped Photo Rendering: Bally's]
Loyalty Program News / Hyatt Gold Passport / MGM Resorts / M Life / Hotel News / Viva Vegas / Hyatt Hotels / Las Vegas Hotels / → All Tags
Love Vegas? Love Hyatt Hotels? Then life is about to get much sweeter for you.
Hyatt has announced a new partnership with MGM Resorts in Las Vegas which will allow members of Hyatt's loyalty program, Hyatt Gold Passport, to earn and redeem points at the 12 MGM resorts in Las Vegas. (Currently, the only Hyatt in Vegas is a Hyatt Place off the Strip.)
But the deal also works both ways.
MGM's players club, M Life can also earn M Life Tier Credits when staying at the more than 450 Hyatt hotels and resorts around the world.
“Our new relationship with MGM Resorts International underscores Hyatt’s focus on listening to guests and developing innovative strategies that set us apart and add value to loyalty program membership,” said Jeff Zidell, senior vice president, Hyatt Gold Passport. “We know The Las Vegas Strip is an important destination for our members, and now they will have the chance to earn points and redeem award nights at 12 outstanding resorts from Bellagio to MGM Grand to Mandalay Bay.”
Indeed, considering how often we go to Vegas, it looks like we're going to have to dust off our Hyatt Gold Passport card now.
The loyalty program partnership will begin on June 20 and stays at participating MGM Resorts can be booked through Hyatt.com, MLife.com or through individual MGM property websites. Below we've listed all of the participating hotels, all with links to recent stories on our sister site, VegasChatter.com, who has up-to-the moment stories on each property.
It's time for a walk down memory lane with a HotelChatter Flashback!
On this day back in 2007, we were chattering about the staggering $3 million paycheck plus room and board for the artist once again known as Prince and his seven-week residency at the Hollywood Roosevelt.
The concerts took place only on Friday nights in the hotel's Blossom Room and had a starting time of 11pm. The shows typically didn't finish until 4 in the morning, although the hotel did serve food at 2am. While the shows gave the hotel some amazing press and real rock star cred, getting tickets to the show was a nightmare for people who weren't celebrities or rock stars themselves. Not to mention the ticket price was $312 for standing room only.
Yet, this was done in the days before social media took over our lives so we can't help but wonder how this would have gone down using Twitter/Facebook/Instagram/Pinterest, etc. Think Prince would be up for a reunion show?
Photo Gallery / Hotel Design / Hospitality Design Expo / Hotel Furniture / Hotel Technology / Hotel News / → All Tags
This week we attended the Hospitality Design Expo Conference in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center and never before have we seen so much hotel furniture in one spot--from chairs and beds to desks and lamps and beyond. It was thrilling for hotel nerds like us.
We'll have more from what we learned at the show next week (keyword: MILLENIALS) but for now, we thought we'd simply show you what we saw. Take a, um, seat and enjoy!