Tag: Sad Vegas

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Are We On The Verge Of Downtown Grand 2.0?

Where: 206 North 3rd Street [map], 89101
June 30, 2015 at 1:17 PM | by | ()

Sometimes it doesn’t take long for a project to be declared an utter failure. In the case of Downtown Grand, what started out as an less-than-Grand opening quickly spiraled into near-irrelevance. Now signs are pointing (both literally and figuratively) towards a relaunch of the ill-fated property. But is it too late to restore good fortune to the former Lady Luck?

This writer was the first VegasChatter-er to publish a review of Downtown Grand’s contemporary new rooms. Initially as a pampered invited guest, then two days later (incognito and on my own dime) for a different perspective. Feel free to look back at those write-ups here and here.

The former Player's Club desk, now a bank of empty slot machines

During that first stay, the Grand’s marketing team described ambitious future offerings, like “Commissary After Dark”, a nightclub-style venue that was to rise nightly inside "The Commissary" food court. And “Picnic”, downtown’s first and only daytime pool club.

Well, "After Dark" never happened and "The Commissary" went from an elaborate concept to a scaled-down food court with limited choices and hours. It now exists primarily as a place to get your "Grand Experience" (resort fee) coffee and maybe a sandwich or bar bites.

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While The Strip Is Changing, Which Three Casinos Are Stuck In The Past?

May 29, 2014 at 1:51 PM | by | ()

This year, things are really moving on The Strip. The Cromwell and High Roller are off and running, Bally’s is getting Bazaar, and room renovations are (finally) underway at The Quad. And, that’s just center Strip. There’s action at the ends of The Strip as well; rooms are being revealed at The Delano and Resorts World is taking steps towards reality.

In all the excitement, it’s easy to forget about those places that haven’t changed. Here at VegasChatter, we’re keeping track. We think it’s time the three casino-hotels listed below wake from their slumbers and give us something to get excited about.

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Riviera's Not Quite Ready for Life Support

Where: 2901 S Las Vegas Blvd. [map], 89109
January 17, 2014 at 3:37 PM | by | ()

Rumors of the Riviera’s demise have been greatly exaggerated, as the tired cliche saying goes. The old gal isn’t quite ready for the coroner, but we’ll keep the paramedics on speed dial. She’ll need some well-trained attention in order to survive the crucial years ahead.

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Snap It While You Can: Trop's Stained Glass Ceiling

Where: 89109
November 27, 2013 at 8:11 PM | by | ()

One line in a Las Vegas Review-Journal piece on Tropicana's plans to add a multi-story shopping complex has Vegas lovers mourning a coming casualty of Future Vegas.

The article, focusing on the addition of more retail to The Strip, briefly made the following aside:

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No More Airport Check-Ins For MGM Grand

Where: 5757 Wayne Newton Blvd. [map], 89119
October 21, 2013 at 9:14 PM | by | ()

We've loved it so much that, sometimes, we've booked a room at MGM Grand just to use it. Sadly, however, our days of an easy, breezy, beautiful Covergirl Vegas check in are gone.

Yes, MGM Grand has closed its handy airport check-in desk at McCarran. Our @sammasseur stumbled upon the sad Vegas news today. We're not quite sure when off-site reps handed out their last room key, but we were able to confirm that it's gone for good. We may have to pay someone to stand in line for us in the main lobby now, while we rest on those new benches way over by the gift shop.

If you have something you want to share about Vegas, here's how to fill us in:

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Goodbye, GregRio

March 1, 2013 at 12:23 PM | by | ()

The VegasChatter family is sad to pass along news of the loss of a vocal and respected member of not just our community, but several Vegas-centric sites. Known online as GREGRIO, Greg Reiten passed away recently after battling with cancer. Word of his death spread through Vegas message boards on Thursday.

Though he did not reside here, Greg loved this town and was known as an authority on Vegas shows. He knew our theaters even better, we'd hazard to guess, than most of the performers who graced those stages and was always willing to share his thoughts on the shows themselves as well as advice on which seats were the best, down to specific sections and rows. As his name implied, VegasChatter also knew him to be a big fan and a regular guest of the Rio. He often shared his insider view of the off-Strip property here on our site.

We offer our heart-felt condolences to his loved ones. That sounds so meager and inadequate but know it's written with the utmost sincerity. And, to you our readers, we offer some of GREGRIO's wisdom on Vegas shows as well as the Rio down below. See all the comments he left on VegasChatter, here. Once you're done reading, we can't think of any more fitting tribute than to make plans to take in a Vegas show. Even better, make those reservations using GREGRIO's advice.

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Amazing Johnathan Says Goodbye To Vegas

December 21, 2012 at 10:48 AM | by | ()

The Amazing Johnathan is quitting Vegas.

A long-running Vegas mainstay, Johnathan recently began a residency at Bally's. But, he's giving up after reportedly receiving no love from Caesars Entertainment when it came to letting folks know he was actually there.

Johnathan let fans know about his decision via his Facebook page early this morning:

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Magician Rick Thomas Returns To Vegas Stage, Minus An Old Friend

December 12, 2012 at 7:29 PM | by | ()

Magician Rick Thomas is returning to Las Vegas. But, sadly, missing a long-time partner. Last month, Thomas tweeted the death of his 500-pound white Begal tiger named Samson. The tiger was a main feature of every Rick Thomas show, led into a large box and magically "shrunk." Here's some vintage video of the majestic Samson in action:

Thomas has performed at the Tropicana, Stardust and was the resident magician when the Sahara closed in 2011. Always a family friendly show, the big cats were a big attraction. He's spent the last six months on an Asian tour, but announced his return to Vegas with two performances at the Suncoast with an unexpected update:

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Du-Par's Not Coming To Strip (Soon), After All

December 5, 2012 at 5:44 PM | by | ()

Today, we heard some news that made us feel the same way we do when we get down to the last few bites of Du-Par's fluffy gold pancakes -- wanting more, but appreciative of what we had.

Back in August, our favorite downtown diner thrilled us with news that a second location was headed to Vegas, this one on the Strip and by year's end. After the announcement, the Internet blogsphere was abuzz with rumors that Du-Par's would land at the Riviera, but that's not to be. In fact, a second Vegas location isn't in the immediate future for Vegas, at all, anymore.

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Echelon To Be Hidden From View By February

October 18, 2012 at 11:55 PM | by | ()

Once envisioned as a competitor to CityCenter, Echelon is now just a bit of sad Vegas trivia.

Sidelined by the economy back in 2008, the sprawling project was to have seen a 3,300-room hotel-casino, a shopping mall, and three supporting boutique hotels (sound familiar?), a Mondrian, a Shangri-La and a Delano (recently swooped up by Mandalay Bay). Instead, the site has sat dormant all these years.

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NoCasinos.org Strikes Out at Las Vegas

January 23, 2012 at 4:04 PM | by | ()

Casinos are evil, so says NoCasinos.org.

Well, it turns out that some people don't love Las Vegas as much as we do. A lobbying group called, NoCasinos.org, has just launched a new ad campaign in Miami and Tallahassee featuring a scary voiceover discouraging the public from allowing any new casinos into their areas.

In the ad, voice of Ghostface argues that the casinos are responsible for making Las Vegas #1 in a lot of undesirable categories like foreclosure, divorce, unemployment and crime. (Surprisingly, they left out Las Vegas' new spot at No. 12 on the rudest cities list.) The NY Times also ran an op-ed piece written by an anti-gambling advocate saying pretty much the same thing (Only this time, the state in question was New York.)

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Lady Luck Hopes Being 'Grand' Will Change Its Fortunes

October 27, 2011 at 8:11 PM | by | ()

We know nothing stays the same especially in this town, but it was still a sad Vegas moment to hear that the Lady Luck is no more.

Today, owners flushed the iconic name for the more royal sounding "Downtown Grand." As the picture above shows, the old name has already been plucked from the hotel's facade.

The unlucky property has been shuttered since 2006 when it was supposed to undergo remodeling. But, unlike the Plaza which later did the same, Lady Luck never reopened. It's unclear when the Grand will make its debut. A $100 million dollar remodel is currently underway and, hopefully, will stay that way. (knocks on wood)

And, that's not the only change still taking place in Downtown Vegas:

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