The Las Vegas Strip loses its iconic casino

Casinos on the Las Vegas Strip offer much more than hotel rooms, casinos, restaurants and shows. Huge properties owned by companies such as MGM Resorts International (MGM) – Get the MGM Resorts International ReportCaesars Entertainment (CZR) – Get the report from Caesars Entertainment Inc.Wynn Resorts (WYNN) – Get Wynn Resorts, Limited Reportand others need and provide more than these elements to attract customers.

Every casino resort needs to attract people who simply pass by, which has led these companies to build not only incredible facades, but also world-class free attractions that almost make people stop. Las Vegas is well past the days when a 99 cent shrimp cocktail got people off the streets.

Major casino companies have added awesome free shows and attractions like the Fountains at Bellagio, the Eiffel Tower light show at Caesars Paris Las Vegas, free circus acts at Circus Circus, the flamingo habitat at Caesars Flamingo and the Fall of Atlantis show inside. Forum of the Caesars.

These attractions have set the bar very high in the effort to bring people to the various casinos. The Venetian, for example, has canals – a sort of replica of those in Venice – and while they’re beautiful, they’re also free to look at as they draw shoppers into the property.

Today, an iconic Las Vegas experience that has been delighting tourists since 1989 has entered its final days. It’s a blow for the city and a kind of symbolic end of an era.

The Mirage volcano will soon no longer erupt

Late last year, MGM struck a deal to sell the Mirage to Hard Rock International for just over $1 billion. The move was something of a sequel — a kind of swap — for MGM to take over operations of the Cosmopolitan.

“Now, I’ve mentioned in the past that we’re happy with the amount of exposure we currently have in Las Vegas,” Chief Executive Bill Hornbuckle said at the company’s press conference. third quarter earnings call.

“As such, we are currently in the early stages of a process to sell Mirage operations. This will allow us to maintain our existing exposure in Las Vegas while focusing on the complementary and diverse nature of our offerings in our hometown.”

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It’s easy to see why MGM sold the Mirage: the addition of Cosmopolitan gave the company additional exposure on the Las Vegas Strip.

But this decision condemned an emblematic part of the Mirage.

Under a licensing agreement with MGM, Hard Rock plans to keep the main hotel and casino towers of the Mirage under that name for up to three years. He also plans to build a Guitar Hotel, a mirror of his property in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on the property,

This new structure will be built in part where the iconic Mirage Volcano currently stands.

Las Vegas loses an icon

While many other attractions followed, the Mirage Volcano holds a special place in Las Vegas history.

“At the time, there were no outdoor attractions on the Strip that even came close to the Mirage Volcano,” said Alan Feldman, a prominent member of the International Gaming Institute at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. and a former long-time gaming company executive. Las Vegas Review-Journal.

“It would become an instant hit, drawing huge crowds of pedestrians, and even its fair share of drivers along Las Vegas Boulevard who would stop their cars in the street just to watch the show.”

Hard Rock has made no statement as to when the Volcano will be closed, but given the three-year name licensing agreement and the time it takes to build something as complex as a Guitar Hotel, the days of the attraction are numbered.

“The volcano is incredibly iconic for its generation,” Feldman said. “I think it’s very important to remember that Las Vegas is a city built on change. And she built her success on change and reinvention.

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