Thursday, August 30, 2007

If I Were In Charge

Sometimes I wish I had Steve Wynn-type of money. Or hell, even Sheldon Adelson's bankroll. Actually, I wish I just had their ears. Because even though those two are quite visionary, there is something missing from this town and nobody with deep pockets has seemed to identify it yet.

Let me tell you what this town needs.

  • It needs a huge new resort, with rooms like the ones at Red Rock or THEhotel.
  • It doesn't need a shopping mall, although some sort of upscale boutiques would do.
  • It needs an over-the-top pool, taking the best from the Hard Rock, Mandalay Bay, and Mirage, with beaches, waterfalls, coves, and grottos. No waterslides. And swim-up blackjack and dice, preferably in the shade.
  • It needs a casino that doesn't take it's cues from the Harrah's playbook. Intimate feeling, like Treasure Island, and not sterile like Mandalay Bay. I think the ceilings are just too high at Mandalay Bay. We'd bring it back to the 5x odds, ditch the continuous-shuffle machines, and single-deck blackjack. And offer the highest limits in town. Wide screen TVs suspended in the pit, so people wouldn't have to run to the sportsbook as often, and could stay at the tables.
  • It's got to have a proper sportsbook that can hold a couple thousand people for the big events, with a separate, or at least clearly delineated race book, so that basketball and football fans aren't treated like second-class citizens. Maybe build it to resemble a stadium, with private 'skyboxes' on the second level, and a scoreboard evocative of ballparks, where you can read the scores and lines from a hundred feet away.
  • It would still have all the normal resort amenities, like spas, wedding chapels, and such.
  • It would have the requisite celebrity chef-owned restaurants, steakhouses, and the like, but the 24-hour options would include more than a coffee shop. There would be the ultimate late-night munchie stops--A taco stand like Roberto's, and most definitely a White Castle. Could you even imagine how much money a White Castle inside of a casino would make?
  • And I'd work on getting some regional favorites in there for casual/quick dining--Dunkin' Donuts instead of Krispy Kremes, Rubio's, In & Out Burger, Ted Drewe's, The Varsity, stuff like that.
  • There would be proper lounges and cigar bars.
  • Most of all, there would be a showroom like the old Copa Room at the Sands. Dinner and drinks early, with Rat Pack-style crooners and headliners such as Harry Connick Jr, Matt Dusk, or Chris Isaak, and the late show would feature more of the R-rated comedians. And yes, there would be a strictly enforced dress code.
  • There would be no movie theatres, bowling alleys, or arcades.
  • Because there would be a strictly enforced NO ONE UNDER THE AGE OF 21 ALLOWED ON PROPERTY AT ANY TIME policy. All guests would *have* to be over the age of 21. People cannot bring teenagers or other children with them to the hotel. Adults only, even in the rooms. No strollers at any time, anywhere. (I would imagine there would be a HUGE market for this type of resort).
  • Theme? No theme, per se, Casual Elegance, Vegas--circa 1961, would be the closest thing to a theme.
  • Champagne would flow, just like the old days. The main bar in the casino would be geared towards champagne.
  • Live music, soft jazz, every night, playing in the casino. Not piped-in music.
  • The main show would *not* be Cirque du Soleil. It would be and old-school showgirl-type of variety show. Better than Folies. Way better than Jubilee.
  • A 24-hour coffee stand right next to the elevators that sold overpriced bottled water late at night.
  • Of course there would be a world-class poker room with celebrity hosts and such.

If you build it, they will come.


No comments: