Patio Culture Comes to MGM Resorts, Las Vegas

MGM Las Vegas patio park

New York-inspired lunch in the park, Vegas-style

A completely new food experience is coming to Las Vegas, and it involves patios, a park-side hamburger shack and chocolate, among—in true Vegas fashion—about a million other things.

In April, MGM Resorts announced details on a new outdoor-indoor retail plaza and public park (scheduled for completion in early 2014) at New York-New York and Monte Carlo. Leading up to a new 20,000-seat arena being developed nearby, the complex will transform the front facades of both properties so that the vibe of both resorts is moved onto the Strip in a patio-like setting. The space will provide a blank canvas for planners to craft experiential events at one of the dining pavilions and performance areas.

“We are creating a zone where people can have a lot of fun, while tying into New York culture but serving the Las Vegas guest,” says Cindy Kiser Murphey, president of New York-New York.

One of the major highlights for the New York-New York property is the enhancement of the patio and balcony experience at the hotel’s Nine Fine Irishmen pub. A 1,270-sf addition will add even more outdoor space with views of the water fountain in front of the resort. The project will also enhance the property’s famous Brooklyn Bridge to integrate it within the patio culture.

Another food-centric part of the project is Hershey’s Chocolate World Store, which has interactive components with the different Hershey brands. Meeting planners will be able to work with the Hershey’s brands to have special recognitions and customize chocolate products.

“We’re in the business of creating stories worth telling,” Murphey says. “And we believe that having a Hershey’s store will instigate a lot of conversations. We are planning to celebrate our chocolate-ness along with our New York-ness pretty heavily.”

At Monte Carlo, the current European-inspired exteriors will be replaced by new restaurants, such as Double Barrel, a roadhouse restaurant and bar concept; Sambalette, a high-end coffee experience; and 800 Degrees Neopolitan Pizzeria, in which guests can nosh on build-your-own personal pizzas.

Shake Shack—a Manhattan institution that literally started as a shack in Madison Square Park—will also add to the park setting, as well as pay homage to the property’s New York roots.

“Shake Shack has grown to be incredibly popular in New York, so much so that they have line cams to see how long they are,” says Murphey. “There is very much a party atmosphere in the lines, which we were envisioning with the addition of the park.”