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The SLS Las Vegas Will Rise from the Dust of The Sahara by 2014

April 13, 2011 at 7:44 PM | by | ()

While we spend our last precious days with the old Sahara before they put her down, we're comforted somewhat in knowing that there's now a tentative opening date for its reincarnation as the SLS Las Vegas.

SBE nightclub and restaurant owner and SLS hotelier Sam Nazarian told the LA Times today that the SLS Las Vegas will open in 2014. Yay? Part of us wants to get excited but that's all three long years away. Sigh.

Nazarian also felt the need to clarify why exactly he's closing the Sahara on May 16. And it has nothing to do with money.

At the time, Nazarian would not comment on the closure, but he now says the plan from the beginning was to close the hotel for renovation. He said he was committed to reopening it in 2014 as an SLS Las Vegas, with six restaurants and two nightclubs.

Well, we all expected him to close the Sahara didn't we? After all, the transformation from an old, neglected Vegas casino to a sexy and shiny new SLS hotel would be too great to carry out while still in operation. But we're guessing the bad economy and high operating costs of a losing property gave the closure a big push.

Still, while the lights go out at the Sahara, Nazarian faces two new challenges. First off, he can't just obliterate the Sahara history entirely. Vegas historians (and us) will probably be on his back making sure that pieces of the old Rat Pack hangout remain, or at least get donated to Neon Boneyard. For starters, we suggest incoporating those Sahara doorhandles into the SLS somewhere.

Nazarian will also have make the SLS different from Cosmopolitan as they are essentially going after the same demographic (young wealthy partiers) with their smorgasboard of nightclubs and restaurants. Lastly, we think Nazarian's going to have to work hard to get folks to this desolate end of the Strip. But hey, a lot can change in three years.

While Nazarian insists he is "shovel-ready" to start renovations on the Sahara, there's no real time line nor is there any real plan of what these renovations will involve. So while we wait for more news, we'll be thinking up clever little Vegas-centric acronyms for SLS. Sexy Little Slots? Sin Luck Sex? So Long Sahara?

Archived Comments:

Keep those fingers and toes crossed....

I agree - will the high rollers and LA glitterati want to step over the 'welfare demographic' currently found at that end of the Strip?

It sounds quite a gamble on the regeneration of the north end of the Strip - if Echelon and Fontainebleau are completed by 2014 it might pay off...but it's a big if.

Shovel Ready

He's already shoveling it.

Big gamble

If nothing else changes on that part of the strip, I doubt the SLS will profit. Part of the attraction of the Cosmo is it's location..right in the middle of the action. The Sahara is set apart from all the activity and what is located around it is borderline ghetto.
One thing that may work is to get the monorail as close to/ or inside the property. If there was not a walk involved, I might think about hopping on the monorail down the strip and be delivered to the front door of a humming club or casino at the SLS.