The pandemic has deprived Las Vegas of an important part of its economic model. Even after casinos were allowed to open (at first with lots of restrictions), big events stayed away. Conventions, involving large gatherings of people, made no sense in a time of social distancing and cancellations piled up, leaving Las Vegas without a draw.
Conventions give people an excuse to go to Las Vegas. It’s very different from asking your partner or loved one to take a trip to Las Vegas for no other reason than “having” to go to work.
Huge events like World of Concrete and the Consumer Electronics Show each draw over 100,000 people to Las Vegas. These arrivals aren’t just filling casinos owned by Las Vegas Strip executives Caesars Entertainment (CZR) – Get the report from Caesars Entertainment Inc. and MGM Resorts International (MGM) – Get the MGM Resorts International Report but also almost all properties in the city.
These huge conventions are, however, relatively rare. The real engine of commercial traffic in Las Vegas comes from the smaller salons.
These events fill convention space at Caesars Palace, Bally’s and the MGM Grand. The Venetian, which has new ownership, has ample convention space, which has been a major draw.
The Las Vegas Strip hosts hundreds, if not thousands, of smaller conventions each year that fall short of the necessary level at the Las Vegas Convention Center.
Now a new player – a brand new casino coming to the North Las Vegas Strip – wants to take a big slice of that business.
The Las Vegas Strip has a new rival MGM and Caesars
Fontainebleau Las Vegas, a project that has been on an almost 20-year odyssey, looks set to open in late 2023.
The new casino wants to draw consumers north and plans to use modern meeting and conference spaces as an advantage at Caesars and MGM properties, as well as The Venetian, on the South and Central strips.
“The introduction of Fontainebleau Las Vegas into this market comes with high expectations among meeting planners, so we are already looking several steps ahead and building solutions for new opportunities,” said Cliff Atkinson, president of Fontainebleau Las Vegas.
“Our position on the Strip and the multitude of event spaces in Fontainebleau provide the foundation upon which we are building the future of the Las Vegas convention industry, powered by the collective knowledge, success and imagination of our incredible management team.”
Because it’s a brand-new building, designers at the 67-story Fontainebleau have optimized every detail of the more than 550,000 square feet of customizable indoor and outdoor meeting and convention space, “with countless configurations on five levels of the complex, allowing experiences to be adapted to each preference.
The new casino/convention center offers a 10,000 square foot pillarless ballroom, one of the largest in Las Vegas, “easily divisible to meet various needs; a tri-level theater of over 90,000 square feet with generous pre-function space capable of accommodating business functions to entertainment, nearly 62,000 square feet of additional space can be used to create up to 57 breakout rooms, three executive meeting rooms overlooking nearly 25,900 square feet of an outdoor welcoming garden which, like much of Fontainebleau Las Vegas, provides a seamless connection to the natural beauty that surrounds the city .”
Fontainebleau also offers six dedicated goods lifts, designed to facilitate loading and unloading.
“We create an environment where every space, every touchpoint, enables customers to perform at their highest level,” said Tony Yousfi, senior vice president of development at Fontainebleau.
“Fontainebleau may be new to Las Vegas, but we’re not new to hospitality. From location to navigation to every major and minor detail, our resort is designed with the convention guest in mind and the meeting organizer at the top of the list.
Why is Fontainebleau a threat to Caesars and MGM?
Casinos want conventions because they fill their hotel rooms, restaurants, and gaming areas. Visitors to Las Vegas certainly explore the city, and people staying on the Strip don’t stick to one property, but hosting a convention means selling your rooms at high prices while generating sales in all other parts. of a property.
Fontainebleau will have the most modern congress center, built according to current technological standards and designed for accessibility.
It’s an advantage over Caesars, MGM and The Venetian, simply because newer often equals better and it’s very clear that the owners of Fontainebleau have thought carefully about taking on this business.
“It cannot be overstated how much of a role our unique design plays in our ability to drive this city’s convention industry forward,” said Atkinson.
“When guests arrive, they will immediately recognize that they are at the convergence of modern business travel and luxury hospitality – it is a world that allows them to explore, engage and shape their visit at their leisure.”
It might not be meant to be the new kid on the block throwing the gauntlet at its more established rivals, but it is indeed what is happening.