“Mandalay Bay deal comes over 2 years after Las Vegas shooting - Las Vegas Review-Journal” plus 2 more

“Mandalay Bay deal comes over 2 years after Las Vegas shooting - Las Vegas Review-Journal” plus 2 more

Mandalay Bay deal comes over 2 years after Las Vegas shooting - Las Vegas Review-Journal

Posted: 18 Jan 2020 12:00 AM PST

A little over two years ago, Mandalay Bay was at the center of a national tragedy.

Perched on the 32nd floor, a heavily armed gunman broke through two windows to shoot concertgoers across Las Vegas Boulevard, killing nearly 60 people and injuring hundreds more in the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.

In the days and weeks after the attack, business looked slow at Mandalay Bay, and hospitality experts contended the hotel-casino should not ditch its name, despite its link to the massacre.

Today, the towering, gold-colored property remains among MGM Resorts International's biggest moneymakers on the Strip — and, we learned this week, is now part of a multibillion-dollar real estate sale.

New York financial giant The Blackstone Group announced Tuesday it agreed to form a joint venture to acquire the Mandalay Bay and MGM Grand's real estate. The deal is expected to close this quarter.

MGM's real estate investment trust, MGM Growth Properties, will own 50.1 percent of the venture and said the deal values the megaresorts at $4.6 billion. Blackstone, which has been on a real estate buying binge in Southern Nevada for years, will own 49.9 percent of the venture.

For local residents, and especially survivors of the shooting and victims' family members, Mandalay Bay will always be linked to the Oct. 1, 2017 massacre at the Route 91 Harvest festival. But this week's dual-hotel deal says more about MGM's financial moves, and Blackstone's voracious appetite for real estate, than it does about the shooting.

MGM Resorts, which will lease back the MGM Grand and Mandalay Bay and continue to operate them, has made big changes over the past year to bolster its balance sheet.

The casino operator eliminated more than 1,000 jobs, mostly in Las Vegas, last year as part of its "MGM 2020" cost-cutting plan. It also sold the Bellagio's real estate to Blackstone for around $4.2 billion in cash a few months ago and leased it back, and sold Circus Circus and 37 acres of adjacent land for $825 million to Treasure Island owner Phil Ruffin.

Blackstone, led by billionaire Stephen Schwarzman, buys property around the world. In Las Vegas, it has picked up real estate across the valley since the economy imploded, including hotels, rental houses, apartment complexes and office buildings.

Its latest deal means it will be the landlord for MGM Resorts' top three money-makers on the Strip. In 2018, Bellagio generated more than $405 million in operating income, highest among the company's Las Vegas properties, followed by the MGM Grand at $304.6 million and Mandalay Bay at $174.3 million, a securities filing shows.

Of course, this being wheeler-dealer Las Vegas, Mandalay Bay is no stranger to big-money transactions.

In 2005, MGM Mirage, as MGM Resorts was previously known, completed its acquisition of the hotel's former parent company, Mandalay Resort Group, in a deal valued at $7.9 billion.

As part of the sale, MGM acquired an employee parking lot across from the Luxor. Years later, the company turned the stretch of pavement into a fairgrounds — and the home of Route 91.

Contact Eli Segall at esegall@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0342. Follow @eli_segall on Twitter.

Strip clubs could face cloudy future around Raiders stadium - Las Vegas Review-Journal

Posted: 31 Jan 2020 06:12 PM PST

As the vision for the area surrounding Allegiant Stadium takes shape, discussions are being had about what will be added and possibly stripped from the neighborhood.

In a pair of meetings with stakeholders and through an online survey, area residents have expressed to Clark County officials their hope that adult entertainment businesses would be absent from the stadium district.

"Clean safe and family oriented, not adult entertainment," one survey respondent wrote.

The stadium district is defined as a 1.23 square mile area around Allegiant Stadium. Its borders are Tropicana Avenue to the north, the railroad tracks to the west and south and Interstate 15 to the east.

There are two strip clubs in the stadium district area, with Crazy Horse III less than a quarter-mile from the stadium and Larry Flynt's Hustler Club, which is less than a mile down Dean Martin Drive.

Though Crazy Horse III features Allegiant Stadium on its website and has expressed its desire to be a pre-and-post game destination for stadiumgoers, it is possible the pair of strip clubs are moved out of the area, according to Clark County Commissioner Michael Naft.

"I think there's a strong desire for the neighborhood to mature," Naft said. "It's going to be the main stage for millions of visitors, so you want to make it as welcoming to everybody as possible."

Nevertheless, Naft said there is no immediate push to move the pair of adult establishments out of the area.

"We are confident that the stadium district will bring new and exciting entertainment opportunities to the area," he said. "The existing adult uses can remain. It is not our intent to create adverse conditions for any existing businesses."

Representatives from Crazy Horse III declined to comment and Hustler representatives didn't respond to an email requesting comment.

A mixed use approach

The online survey found respondents generally are in favor of a mixed-used approach, with hotels, live-work structures and entertainment. Respondents also want something similar to Toshiba Plaza in front of T-Mobile Arena.

"Park has become a gateway to T-Mobile and there's desire (from respondents) for something similar in the stadium district," Naft said

Details of the preferred look include:

— Green space for kids and gathering areas for game and non‐game day events.

— Well lit areas at night.

— Public art and lots of open space.

— A lot of shaded areas, outdoor covered space, shaded walkways through parking lots, vegetation, and water features.

The survey also found that residents want to feel safe in the area, and hope to have strong safety and security measures with CCTV, police presence and satellite police stations.

Fine arts, live music, entertainment, affordable food options, along with lounges, bars and family friendly attractions are also preferred in the area.

Transportation wishes

Transportation was also a big topic of discussion on the survey with respondents looking for improved parking, mobility options and more.

Some of the stated preferences include:

— Extending the Las Vegas Monorail to Mandalay Bay.

— Connecting the monorail to the stadium and airport.

— Developing a tram system that travels on the Strip and ends at the stadium.

— Utilizing underground electric rail.

— Offering plenty of public transportation options.

— Providing shuttle system/buses from surrounding neighborhoods

Las Vegas Monorail Co. spokesperson Ingrid Reisman said the company is still planning on going forward with extending the monorail to Mandalay Bay.

"It's a work in progress," Reisman said.

Extending the monorail from MGM Grand to Mandalay Bay would cost $140 million to construct and the company has had trouble securing financing for the project. Last year Clark County shot down the monorail's request to guarantee $135 million in public funds to go toward two new stops, one at Mandalay Bay and another at MSG Sphere at the Venetian. The company eventually secured $33.6 million in financing for the MSG Sphere stop.

Naft said all modes of transportation will have to come together to handle stadium traffic.

"There won't be one solution," he said.

Naft also said ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft will be "a huge component" of the stadium's transportation solution.

"The appeal, for example, of (having) a town square up the street. I could see people going in, having a drink and taking a ride share from there, over to the stadium."

Naft said more meetings are needed to help shape the vision for the stadium district.

"I don't think you'll see a real, defined overlay district, with set parameters before the stadium opens," he said. "There's a strong desire from all the businesses in the neighborhood to see how things progress. But then also from customers' perspective and residents, this is a new thing for us and we don't want to lock ourselves into something at the exclusion of other opportunities."

The Review-Journal is owned by the family of Las Vegas Sands Corp. Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson. The MSG Sphere is a project by Madison Square Garden and Las Vegas Sands Corp.

Contact Mick Akers at makers@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2920. Follow @mickakers on Twitter.

Las Vegas restaurants guide: Where to eat on and off the Strip - Los Angeles Times

Posted: 31 Jan 2020 07:00 AM PST

You've won the jackpot and all that crazed screaming made you hungry. You will celebrate with a blowout meal at Joël Robuchon, from which, four hours later, you will emerge no longer famished — or wealthy. Yes, at $445 for the full degustation menu, it's expensive. And yes, it's worth it. It just feels right: the plush purple banquettes, the Baccarat crystal, the impeccable service, the … framed photo of Nicolas Cage? OK, maybe not that. Then there's the food: indulgently overstuffed langoustine ravioli in foie gras sauce, Robuchon's signature mashed potatoes and, naturally, a flawless chocolate souffle with the texture of the inside of a marshmallow just roasted on a campfire. If you've got money to roast, go for it. — AC and LKP

3799 S. Las Vegas Blvd., Las Vegas, (702) 891-7925, mgmgrand.mgmresorts.com/en/restaurants/joel-robuchon-french-restaurant.html

Price: 💰💰💰💰


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