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The Suite Blog >> MGM Trying to Keep up WIth City Center & Casinos



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November 23, 2008 - After taking a trip to Las Vegas earlier this month, one thing is clear: MGM is taking over the town. Besides their already megalithic lineup of Vegas casinos, which include MGM Grand, Mirage, Excalibur, Luxor, Circus Circus, Mandalay Bay, Treasure Island, Monte Carlo and New York New York, MGM is knee-deep constructing the most ambitious project in Vegas to date: City Center.

If you take a drive up the Strip, you will begin to witness the colossal size of this project. I mean, it's a city within a city for God's sake. There's something like four or five skyscraper condo/hotels going up (with ample space between, mind you), and a Strip-side, high-end boutique shopping plaza that looms over Las Vegas Boulevard like a row of giant, sprawling trees.

At this stage, City Center is a bunch of skeletal steel framing. However, the main entrance off the Strip has already been paved and the "flesh" of the skyscrapers is beginning to show. City Center truly is a feat of design. In fact, that's what impresses me the most. Sure, the sheer size of City Center is something to behold. But the design is way ahead of its time and will likely set the precedent for a "new age" Las Vegas Strip.

I believe the project is valued at something like $9 billion, which is nothing to scoff at during these current economic times. Sales have already begun on condos, and MGM is stepping up marketing tactics to get people interested. For instance, in my hotel room at the Mirage, the television was synced up to a channel devoted to Project City Center. Furthermore, condo sales desks are available in each of MGM's casino resorts.

Honestly, I'm not sure how well sales are going. By the looks of the Mirage, they aren't doing that well. Uh yes, let me warn you if you're planning to stay at the Mirage any time soon: I was staying in one of the "suites", which apparently have good views and are more spacious. First of all, just because you are on one of the "suite" floors, does not mean you will be staying in a suite (which was the case for me).

Secondly, while all the other standard rooms in the Mirage have been renovated, complete with flat screen televisions and ultra-comfortable beds, the suite floors still have the old carpeting, shabby beds (my bed at home was more comfortable than the Mirage's spring contraption) old furnishings, and yes, an old television straight out of the early nineties. And to top things off, the volcano out front wasn't even working, although I hear it will be a show-stopping feat like the Bellagio fountains when renovations are completed, which were supposed to be done in the Fall.

Other than my non-renovated suite without a view and a impotent volcano, my stay at the Mirage was pretty nice. The pool was fantastic. And so was Sigfreid and Roy's Secret Garden, which is an animal habitat for lions, tigers and ......dolphins (you thought I was going to say bears, didn't you). The service was great, food was good, and I even did okay at the blackjack table. Great weather for November also helped.

So, here's to you MGM and City Center. Let's hope you can "get 'er done". But first try to finishing your renovations on the Mirage.

Originally published: November, 2008 | Categories: Gambling


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