A panel of heavy-hitters spoke with us recently at the Venetian Theatre to present insider intel on how Vegas remains a leader in meetings and conventions.
Chris Meyer, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority’s VP of global business sales, reported that the city’s 11 million sf of convention space attracted a record 6.7 million last year, resulting in a $1.4 billion Las Vegas Convention Center project for 2021. And these aren’t the only new developments in Vegas.
Michael Dominguez, SVP and chief sales officer for MGM Resorts International, pointed to the Stay Well Meetings program at MGM Grand, The Mirage and the all-new Park MGM (formerly Monte Carlo) as a testament to ongoing innovation throughout the city. After touring meeting spaces and guest rooms equipped with wellness features such as air purification systems, circadian lighting and guided meditation narrated by Deepak Chopra, we can attest.
Park MGM’s President and COO, Patrick Miller, greeted us for breakfast at the hotel’s new Primrose cafe. “We are reimagining our resort into two unique experiences: Park MGM and NoMad Las Vegas, our boutique hotel,” Miller said. The dual-resort shares new dining and shopping venues, and anchors the neighborhood’s CityCenter, The Park, and T-Mobile Arena, Vegas’ new, world-class sports and entertainment venue. To come: MGM’s new Eataly marketplace, a NoMad Restaurant, and the first Vegas restaurant from hot L.A. chef Roy Choi.
The Park MGM sales team led a tour of their new 77,000-sf Conference Center, the city’s first Executive Meeting Center, and Ideation Studio for corporate retreats. We also experienced VIP treatment in a private suite at the T-Mobile Arena for a sold-out Justin Timberlake concert, catered with champagne, sushi and comfort food.
Meanwhile, a big attraction at Bellagio is nontraditional meeting space, and groups can look to the hotel’s nightclubs, The Bank and Hyde, and the “O” Theater’s hip, Ted Talk-type atmosphere as examples. We were also the first to enjoy the private dining room at the new Michael Mina restaurant, with Bellagio Conservatory views.
Mandalay Bay hosted a “Build Your Own Cocktail Challenge” at Libertine Social, and then took us to Chef Alain Ducasse’s new Rivea Plus private dining room for 40 to 120 guests. Stephanie Glanzer, Mandalay Bay’s VP of sales, hosted our creative “Wine vs. Beer” dinner on the 64th floor with views of the Vegas Strip.
Caesars Palace remains the Vegas epicenter of celebrity chef dining, with new restaurants from Gordon Ramsay (Hell’s Kitchen) and Giada De Laurentiis. We feasted at Mr. Chow’s theatrical Chinese showplace, followed by Jennifer Lopez’s “All I Have” extravaganza at Planet Hollywood. Another highlight was lunch at Bobby Flay’s Mesa Grill where we learned that Caesars’ ahead-of-the-curve diversity means that 44 percent of management positions are held by females and 37 percent by minorities. Caesars’ biggest update is the ground breaking of Caesars Forum, a $375 million, 550,000-sf conference center behind the LINQ High Roller.