I’ve always found the expression “Après nous, le déluge”—as reportedly uttered by King Louis XV of France to his maîtresse-en-titre, Jeanne Antoinette Poisson, Marquise de Pompadour (better known as Madame de Pampadour)—while a somewhat glamorous non-sequitur, to be pretty dreary. After us, the flood? I mean, how indifferent could a sovereign from the Age of Enlightenment have been? [Quite, apparently.] And yet, watching the sheer volume of people that have descended upon Las Vegas since the COVID restrictions were lifted for those who’ve been vaccinated, it’s pretty apparent that no matter how you choose to refer to it, the floodgates have opened, the Kraken has been released, and le déluge is upon us.
That said, while it’s enough to give one metaphorical whiplash, it’s also exciting to watch everything come roaring back to life. Some that are coming up, right around the proverbial corner; and others that might not be here for a while but have been announced. Things worth getting excited about, to be sure. Fun things!
The former Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, after a $200 million conversion, has been reopened as Virgin Hotels Las Vegas (a partnership with the Curio Collection by Hilton), with the Mohegan Sun Casino being operated by Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment, making the Mohegan Tribe of Uncasville, CT the first Native American tribe to operate a Las Vegas casino. There’s the new Élia Beach Club, which promises to raise the proverbial roof, a new show—27: A Musical Adventure—and a slate of new restaurants. Myself, I’m looking forward to ONE Steakhouse as well as Todd English’s Olives; but more on those, later this summer.
Over at The Venetian Resort Las Vegas, the folks from Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp were on hand to celebrate the first “topping out” of the MSG Sphere at The Venetian, which marked the completion of the structural steel used for the venue’s domed roof. Hundreds of folks gathered at the construction site, where MSG Entertainment’s VP of Construction, Nick Tomasino, thanked the assemblage of employees, tradespeople, contractors, architects, and engineers; after which the venue’s final steel beam was ceremonially lifted into place. According to MSG Entertainment, the MSG Sphere’s second “topping out”—the completion of the venue’s exosphere—will be next year.
There are all sorts of hustling and bustling going down at Wynn Las Vegas, where the team from Wynn Design & Development was far busier in 2020 than you might think. The results of this will be revealed over the coming months as new venues (restaurants, lounges, viewing terraces, etc.) come online. The first of these, Delilah—a glam supper club being opened in conjunction with The h.wood Group from LA—might well be the most spectacularly gorgeous venue Las Vegas has ever seen, and after the opening weekend (July 08-10) you should make it a point to bear witness to Todd-Avery Lenahan’s truly magnificent design. I’m here to tell you: Delilah is gonna knock y’all out. Trust.
Meanwhile, across Las Vegas Boulevard, Resorts World Las Vegas is opening on the site of the former Stardust Resort & Casino, with a level of pomp commensurate not just with being the most expensive property ever built in Las Vegas (at $4.3 billion), but also with its opening being the first on the Strip since that of the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, back in 2010. The 3,506 rooms in the 59-story hotel tower are actually three different Hilton hotels, with 1,774 forming the Las Vegas Hilton at Resorts World, another 1,496 making up the Conrad Las Vegas at Resorts World, and a very boutique-y 236 rooms comprising Crockfords Las Vegas. And while my favorite feature originally touted for Resorts World (a live panda habitat) did not make the cut, there’s no question that the folks there are ponying-up major coins for top-shelf entertainment—including residencies by Celine Dion, Katy Perry, Carrie Underwood, and Luke Bryan in the AEG Presents-operated The Theatre at Resorts World; and by Tïesto and Zedd (and a slew of other DJs) at the Zouk Group-operated Ayu Dayclub and Zouk Nightclub—not to mention more than 40 food and beverage outlets, including Carversteak: The Steakhouse at Resorts World Las Vegas, the highly anticipated first restaurant from Carver Road Hospitality that's bringing together three of my favorite hospitality heavyweights: Sean Christie, Oliver Wharton, and Francesco Lafranconi.
I know it’s a lot to take in; but fear not: I’ll be breaking it all down, for you, over the course of the summer. And in the meantime, make sure to hydrate (this record-breaking heat is no joke!), and stay cool.
Get into it!