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SLS Las Vegas / Sam Nazarian / Katsuya / Cleo / Pool Scenes / → All Tags
And the hits keep on coming for the SLS Las Vegas. And by hits we mean more changes to the struggling casino hotel.
Page Six reports that Sam Nazarian is selling off his two best restaurant concepts--Katsuya and Cleo--to the One Group which owns the STK steakhouse brand (found in Vegas in The Cosmopolitan) as well as the Bagatelle brand (once found in Vegas for a hot minute at the Tropicana.) What this means for the future of Katsuya and Cleo at the SLS, whose hours were downgraded in November, we're not sure but now with new, non-SBE owners, anything can happen.
Another interesting development at SLS may happen to the hotel's pool scene. According to # 11 on this recent Clark County Zoning and Subdivision agenda, there's a design review pending for:
"an outside bar/nightclub with swimming pools in conjunction with a resort hotel (SLS) on a portion of 17.5 acres in an H-1 (Limited Resort and Apartment) Zone in the MUD-1 Overlay District. Generally located on the southeast corner of Las Vegas Boulevard South and Sahara Avenue within Winchester. CG/jt/ml (For possible action)"
Currently, the SLS only has one pool (the original Sahara pool) but now that LiFE has closed, we could totally see SLS ripping up this area and building an entirely new pool scene.
[Photo: Greg C./VegasChatter]
This may be one of the slowest weeks of the year for Vegas, but gaming news was fast and furious. Here's a recap of the biggest headlines:
○The sale of The Cosmopolitan may become official as soon as today. The Nevada Gaming Commission blessed the deal yesterday. Blackstone Group is purchasing the center Strip property from Deutsche for $1.73 billion. (Vegas Inc.)
Sahara / SLS Las Vegas / Lost Vegas / Name Changes / Sam Nazarian / Vegas History / Vegas Design / → All Tags
When we heard that SLS Hotels would be closing down the iconic Sahara Hotel back in 2011, one of our first thoughts was, "But what will happen to the Sahara door handles?" Seriously.
During our visit to the down-trodden casino in 2009, that was one of the design details that this writer adored the most. (It's probably because my last name begins with an "S.") We had hoped then that SLS would incorporate the door handles somewhere into the SLS and as it turns out, they have.
Johnny Kats uncovered the whereabouts of the door handles in his LV Weekly profile on SLS honcho Sam Nazarian.
Today, some elements of the property remain at the new SLS, where Nazarian has a design effect that he calls “Sahara-esque.” He has saved 50 or so S-shaped door handles from the old resort and turned them into a chandelier.
We looked high and low for the chandelier during the SLS Las Vegas' opening day but we could not find it anywhere. And it wasn't because our vision was hampered by gin cocktails. (Or tequila cocktails. Or vodka cocktails.) It turns out the chandelier hadn't been installed yet. But now it's up and here's what it looks like.
You can admire the chandelier for yourself when you walk in between The Sayers Club and the 800 Degrees pizza joint. Alas, the jewels in the door handles have been plucked out. We heard that some over eager folks pried them out of the door handles during the Sahara Liquidation Sale. It was probably for the better. Red, blue and yellow don't really work with the SLS color scheme.
In Las Vegas, there are plenty of things that can cause a double take. They're often, however, of the people-watching variety. At SLS, Sin City's newest resort, we expected to find things to give us pause. We did not, however, expect to stop and gawk before ever stepping foot inside.
Standing jubilantly in the center of the casino's main porte cochere is a mind-boggling sight -- a huge, smiley, silver-colored, starfish-esque, one-eyed blob with appendages upraised. When we shared a photo of the sight on the VegasChatter Facebook page, the majority of readers were just as befuddled labeling the... whatever.. as strange, creepy and weird, and comparing it to Patrick Star (from SpongeBob SquarePants) or something you might see at the Olympics.
Sam Nazarian didn't only drop a hint about SBE's plans for the SLS Las Vegas sportsbook at last week's RD&E (Retail, Dining & Entertainment) Experience but he also shared their plans for a poker room, or lack thereof. When SLS Las Vegas opens it will not have a poker room. Nazarian didn't count out a poker room from future phases that there may be of SLS Las Vegas , but a poker room
isn't in the cards a part of the plan today.
When The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas opened in 2010, they didn't have a poker room. And, despite rumors that they will be adding one, the Cosmo still doesn't have a poker room today with no plans to add one in the future that we know of.
Last week, we attended the RD&E (Retail, Dining & Entertainment) Experience which is a conference about hospitality and non-gaming parts of casinos. One of the keynote speakers was Sam Nazarian who owns SBE and the coming SLS Las Vegas which is currently under construction on the grounds formerly occupied by the Sahara.
Nazarian's goal for the SLS is for the property to earn a whopping 70% of revenue from non-gaming amenities. Last year, Nevada casinos had just under 65% of their revenue come from non-gaming venues. The idea behind SLS is that the casino is on equal footing to every other part of SLS (and most other casinos today).
Hidden between discussions about the shopping, restaurants and nightclubs was a nugget about the sportsbook planned for SLS. A plan that sounds a lot like Lagasse's Stadium. The idea is that the sportsbook will be integrated with Umami Burger and will open out to the street (arrows above point to possible locations). According to Nazarian, the idea is that the sportsbook will be more of a sports bar where you can buy a "$10 burger and $5 beer," bet on a game and watch it.
Announcements / SLS Las Vegas / Sam Nazarian / Sahara / Openings / Fred Segal / → All Tags
The SLS Vegas is moving forward. If only on paper.
In a press release issued today, Sam Nazarian is sticking with an anticipated opening of 2014 for the transformation of the Sahara. And, when it makes its debut, it will be all Fred Segal, all the time.
The 190-room hotel will open in mid-2013 on Park Avenue South near a bunch of other hot hotels like the Gansevoort South, the Ace Hotel and the NoMad Hotel. While the hotel will be designed by SLS' own Philippe Starck, SLS is still working out its F&B and nightlife scene. Contrary to what was reported in the NY Post, we've got word from SLS that a José Andrés restaurant is not definite. (Andrés has restaurants in both the SLS at Beverly Hills and South Beach.)
There is, however, talk of reviving the S Bar brand and even putting in a Hyde nightclub in the New York spot.
SLS Las Vegas / Sahara / SBE / Sam Nazarian / → All Tags
It was almost a year ago that we were fighting for our lives (and for bottled water) during the Sahara's liquidation sale. Since that time, there hasn't been much happening on the property.
Plans to remodel and reconstruct the property were approved by the city back in November but still the Sahara sat empty, silent and seriously sad.
Yet we could soon see some construction action as SLS Las Vegas has just announced a $300 million round of financing which would help with getting the renovations on their way. HotelChatter has the details over there, but we're already wondering what this hotel will actually look like. Now that there's a new influx of cash will it look like this discarded model of the hotel that we stumbled upon during the liquidation sale? Or will they strive to integrate some of the old Sahara into a new design?
SLS Las Vegas / Sahara / SBE / Sam Nazarian / Renovations / → All Tags
HotelChatter saw the news this morning about the massive casino and hotel renovations for the Sahara Las Vegas which will ultimately turn into the trendy SLS Hotel Las Vegas. And we feel sort of like
Barry Manilow traitors for saying this but we're excited for what the SLS will bring.
For starters, the three hotel towers--Tunis, Tangiers and Alexandria--will all be renovated but the room count will drop from 1,700 to 1,622. These rooms will most likely be designed by SLS's own Philippe Starck, a prolific hotel designer who helped usher in the boutique hotel craze in the 90s. And from what we've seen at the SLS in Los Angeles and the soon-to-open SLS South Beach, these rooms could give The Cosmopolitan a run for its money.
SLS Las Vegas, run by SBE and Sam Nazarian, will also ditch the Sahara roller coaster and put in a 2,830-square-foot beer garden. Prost! A massive nightclub complex is planned as well as a pool deck. The casino will of course be renovated and more retail space will be added.
What does The Octavius Tower, Elton John and Sam Nazarian have in common? Nothing really except they are all making news in Vegas today!
First up, the Octavius Tower at Caesars Palace began taking reservations today and we found a deluxe room on January 2nd (opening day) for just $219 a night. That's a lot less than we were guesstimating--we said close to $389 a night--but it's still $20 higher than the new Augustus Tower rooms and remember, right after New Year's is practically the lowest of the low season for Las Vegas. We bet the rates will shoot up once the weather is nice and folks are cavorting around the Garden of the Gods pools again.
Sahara / SLS Hotels / SBE / Sam Nazarian / Vegas Construction / Closings / → All Tags
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.