The Linq Hotel Is Open

The Linq Hotel Las Vegas Entrance
The Linq Hotel Entrance

The Linq Hotel officially opens today even though it’s never been closed. You may remember it as The Quad which it’s been for the past 2 years. Before that you may remember it as Imperial Palace. This name change should stick for a while until Caesars sells naming rights to The Linq mall and ferris wheel some day.

I dig the casino at The Linq Hotel if only for Tag Bar (see thoughts on Vegas Chatter). It’s a fairly middle of the road casino but I always have fun there. That doesn’t offer anything special besides the fun you bring.

Vegas Chatter has pictures of the renovated rooms, which look nice for a mid-level hotel. Here’s the press release for more information.


The LINQ Hotel & Casino Welcomes First Hotel Guests

LAS VEGAS (Oct. 31, 2014) – Yesterday, The LINQ Hotel & Casino – the latest addition to Caesars Entertainment’s portfolio of iconic Las Vegas resorts – opened its doors to the first hotel guests and celebrated the milestone with a celebratory ribbon-cutting.

“Our billion dollar transformation of the east side of the Las Vegas Strip is the result of the major transition in our industry from one built around gaming to a more a multi-dimensional hospitality and entertainment business,” said Gary Loveman, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Caesars Entertainment Corporation. “The LINQ complex showcases how hospitality is the new driving force attracting a wide array of unique customers and providing an enhanced experience for repeat travelers.”

Caesars Entertainment Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, Tariq Shaukat, President of Hospitality Bob Morse, Regional President Eileen Moore and Director of Hotel Operations Stephanie Richter joined employees in cutting the ribbon in front of the newly renovated Las Vegas resort.

“With The LINQ, we pioneered the creation of a new type of experience for the Las Vegas visitor,” said Tariq Shaukat, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer of Caesars Entertainment. “The LINQ Hotel & Casino continues this ground-breaking approach by offering a ‘Vegas Original,’ socially-minded resort at the heart of the Strip. The resort is designed for the changing Las Vegas customer, who is seeking authentic and social entertainment experiences that cannot be found elsewhere, and provides guests with direct access to all the great restaurants, shops and entertainment available at The LINQ Promenade, including the High Roller.”

All hotel rooms and suites contain an interactive system on the television which gives guests access to hotel amenities. With the click on the TV remote, guests can order room service, housekeeping items, set up an alarm clock, as well as order one of the many popular board games available to be delivered to the room. Room service from multiple dining outlets at The LINQ Hotel & Casino and Promenade such as Brooklyn Bowl and Guy Fieri’s Vegas Kitchen & Bar will also be available. Guests can also access the interactive system from their personal smart phones and personalize their music experience with customized LINQ Hotel playlists on Spotify.

The nucleus of the space is a visually stunning mini vortex, featuring mood-changing LED lights, in which a colorful array of the house-made infusions will be displayed against.

The Deluxe King room stretches at 350-square feet and features a fresh, modern design with floor to ceiling windows, boasting views of the iconic Las Vegas Strip or the High Roller. The centerpiece of the room design are three distinct accent wall backdrops featuring stylized renderings of vintage Las Vegas signage, providing guests with a unique experience each time they visit the hotel. Rooms also include:
· Beds with lush pillow top mattress, and oversized pillow
· 47” LCD flat screen TV
· Central charging and docking station located at the convenient in-room compact commuter workspace
· Bathrooms with marbled sink and overhead rain shower
· High speed Wi-Fi available throughout the resort in all common areas, hotel rooms and gaming floor

3535
3535 at The LINQ Hotel & Casino is Las Vegas’ newest infusion bar, with 35 custom made infusions used to make the most authentic and unique cocktails on the Strip. 3535 is all about experimentation and discovery, empowering guests with the opportunity to sample never-before-tasted flavors, select different sizes, order cocktail flights, and even customize their bottle service experience.

The LINQ Hotel & Casino offers all guests the ease and convenience of self-check-in for a quick and speedy registration or advanced online check-in for those who want to proceed immediately to their rooms. A VIP lounge and concierge desk is available with touchscreen capabilities for immediate bookings of favorite dining and entertainment offerings. Combined with The LINQ Promenade and the High Roller, recently named by Travel & Leisure as the “World’s Coolest New Tourist Attraction,” The LINQ Hotel & Casino is set to become the new social center of Las Vegas.

Photo: Vegas Chatter

Coffee Tip: Order A Grande In A Venti Cup

Coffee Tip: Get a grande in a venti cup
Order a grande in a venti cup

I’m going to pass on one of the best tips I ever received in Vegas. I’ll never forget the moment I learned about getting a medium coffee (Grande) in a large coffee (Venti) cup. As an avid coffee drinker this changed my life forever. I even used this tip today!

I was wandering around the casino at Planet Hollywood way too late one night trying to drink a cup of coffee. As I was spilling the hot coffee I walked into a Starbucks employee who stopped to pass on a great coffee tip that I’ll never forget.

He said that I should order a Grande coffee in a Venti cup. 

The next cup of hot coffee I had that weekend was ordered that way and I’ve never looked back. In fact, I ordered my coffee that was this morning as I type this from a casino.

The extra room almost makes the cups stumble or wobble proof. Likewise you could also ask for extra room in your large coffee but why not save a few pennies?

May your future visits to the casino be without any burns from your coffee!

Photo: Flickr

PS: This is also a great tip for drinking hot coffee in your car.

Nightclub Revenue In Vegas Will Shock You

Steve Aoki At Hakkasan Las Vegas
Steve Aoki At Hakkasan

I know casinos and Vegas but I’m not an investor. Sometimes when I see Motley Fool or other investing websites break out revenue in certain ways I can be surprised.

We all know that nightclub revenue is big for Las Vegas casino operators. What is surprising in this chart is seeing how much of the overall revenue nightclubs are for some of the casino operators.

Las Vegas Casino Nightclub Revenue
Oontz, Loot, Oontz, Loot

Hakkasan (MGM Grand, XS (Wynn) and Marquee (Cosmopolitan) are the Big 3 of nightclubs in Vegas. It comes as no surprise that their revenue last year was about the same (see full article for specifics).

Hakkasan revenue seems to be ahead of the pack this year. This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise as Hakkasan is the largest nightclub with the most famous DJ’s and a marketing arm that will use landmarks like the Bellagio fountains to promote you (See Tiesto show).

Besides the percentage of overall revenue for nightclubs there isn’t much in the chart that’s a surprise. That said, it’s always interesting to see casino revenue examined in different ways.

Photo: Hakkasan 

Secrets Of Finding A Royal Flush

Royal Flush At Red Rock Resort Las Vegas
Royal Flush!

There may not be a secret to finding a Royal Flush, but if you keep your eyes open you may find one.

Red Rock Resort is one of three casinos in my neighborhood but its my favorite. You might know that I consider the sportsbook bar my local bar. If you follow me on twitter you probably know that I’m at Red Rock a few times a week to work, eat, drink and gamble (WEDGeVegas?).

I’ve been in a rut playing video poker over the past year. I play mostly full pay quarter, fifty cent or $1 Jacks or Better or Bonus Poker and hadn’t seen a Royal Flush in quite a while until recently.

Over the summer I began playing nickel video poker games just so I could say I got a Royal Flush with hopes that it would help get my mojo back. After a few sessions at various nickel machines I finally got a sweet Royal Flush. Then I got another. Then I got another. These were nickel games but were still the Royal Flush that I wanted.

My video poker mojo is back and I’m back to playing my normal denominations for the most part.

I’m back to playing video poker with my normal denominations for the most part. However, when I walk by this specific bank of nickel video poker machines and see the progressive is above $525 I’ll always put in a $20 bill. The jackpot never reaches $600 so there’s a good chance that maybe I’ll cash in on a Royal Flush for $20. Since I started doing this a few months ago I’ve hit three progressive Royal Flush jackpots of $525 or more.

When you have a casino that you frequent more often then others, no matter where you live, you notice things most people don’t. In my case it’s a bank of nickel progressive video poker machines right across from Starbucks. My typical visit usually has me in this area so I usually check out this progressive jackpot when I visit.

I first noticed a bank of slot machines that hit progressive jackpots in a similar manner back at Showboat in Atlantic City when I lived on the east coast. I’ve kept my eye open for progressives as well as “lucky machines” even since. You may not want to bring a note pad with you when you visit the casino to mark where you’re playing but you might want to keep a mental note. It could pay off.

Here’s How To Know What Beer Is Right For You

What Beer Is Right For You?
What Beer Is Right For You?

There are a lot more types of beer available in Las Vegas than ever before. If you haven’t explored the different kinds of beer you may not know what’s right for you. This chart can help you narrow your options.

While this a cool infographic it might not be entirely accurate. It matched me with a barrel-aged stout this morning. I’m not much of a stout fan.

Another note: If you’re a beer snob you’ll get a chuckle from answering yes to the first question.

Photo: Cool Material

Don’t Stand In Line To Sign Up For The SLS Las Vegas Players Club

SLS Las Vegas Players Club
Sign up at the slot machines

 

I don’t like lines. I don’t do lines. If a business wants me to wait I’ll usually take my money elsewhere. That’s how I roll.

I think SLS Las Vegas understands people like me. Since SLS Las Vegas is still new the lines for the players club have been extremely long. Here’s how skip the lines to sign up for their players club, The Code.

You can sign up at any table game, video poker or slot machine or the cashier. There are constantly SLS reps walking the casino floor looking to sign new players up for The Code. It’s very convenient.

I signed up for The Code online before visiting and getting a card took about 1 minute at the cashier’s cage while they verified my information. Nice n smooth.

This isn’t a new concept. You can get a players club card at table games at most casinos. Some properties have rovers around the machine games like SLS to make you a card on the spot too.

I just figured I’d give you a heads up in case you weren’t aware of these tricks. There’s nothing worse than wasting time in lines in Vegas.

Vegas Is Getting Younger Quickly, You’re Not Aging That Fast

Vegas Is Getting Younger
Say Goodbye To These Folks

John Unwin, CEO of Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, did a sort of strange interview with Bloomberg last week. He was lobbed some softball questions about Las Vegas before being asked about Atlantic City, a market he’s never worked in. Since the Cosmo or any of his previous jobs have no connection to Atlantic City he seemed very lost. That part of the interview was a bad look for Unwin and Bloomberg.

The softball questions surrounded why Las Vegas is in such good shape. One of the interesting bits of information from this interview is that the median age of the Las Vegas customer has gone from 50 To 44 in the past two years. That’s a huge drop.

The large decrease in median age makes sense when you look at all of the new properties and club openings. As the reinvention of Vegas continues it seems as though that median age will continue to fall.

After G2E it seems as though all marketing focus has switched to millennials. If  there is any success with this group of consumers the median age of the Las Vegas customer will continue to surge downward rapidly.

If you feel old when you’re in Vegas today get ready to feel really old in a couple of years.

You can see the complete 5 minute interview below for more information and context.

Photo: Lehigh Valley Live

Planet Hollywood Feeling The Britney Spears Effect To The Tune Of $20 Million

Britney Spears "Piece of Me"
Britney Spears “Piece of Me”

If you’ve been reading any of my work over the past few years you know that I like Britney Spears a bit too much. We go back to the swamps of New Jersey just like my ill-fated love for the New York Jets.

Anyway, I loved the “Piece of Me” show at Planet Hollywood (see my review on Vegas Chatter) and I’m happy to see it succeed. Despite the avalanche of negative reviews the shows are packed and Britney Spears is making bank for Planet Hollywood.

she’s boosted the hotel-casino’s annual operating earnings by about $20 million. Now we understand why the first run of her contract ending next year was renewed for an additional two years.

Having seen Britney a couple of times before “Piece of Me” I knew not to expect much (if any) singing and lazy dancing. I did expect to here some awesome JAMS (here’s a link to the original setlist on spotify that I’m listening to right now).

I didn’t expect such a great audio-visual experience at the Axis Theater. It really is a great theater that would be great for a band with progressive instrumentation like Tool.

I passed up an opportunity to see Britney a couple of weeks ago because I know the show isn’t going anywhere. I will definitely see “Piece of Me”, or a new version of the show, but probably won’t drop $100+ for the show that’s a live version of that spotify playlist.

Wynn And Las Vegas Sands Gambling Revenue Per Day Might Surprise You

Las Vegas Sands Gambling Revenue
The Venetian

The casino always has the advantage in gambling so they’re guaranteed to make money as long as they have customers. The amount of money made in a casino probably wouldn’t surprise anyone. When we see gaming revenue it’s usually in bulk form from quarterly reports.

Sure the bulk numbers are impressive but when you see the table game and slot machine revenue from Wynn and Las Vegas Sands (The Venetian and The Palazzobroken down by day per table (updated for clarity) by fool.com you might be surprised.

Las Vegas Sands

  • Table Game Revenue Per Day – $3,737
  • Slot Machine Revenue Per Day – $185

Wynn

  • Table Game Revenue Per Day – $8.130
  • Slot Machine Revenue Per Day – $276

These numbers are impressive but are dwarfed by similar revenue from Las Vegas Sands and Wynn Macau casinos (see full chart here).

Wynn has some of the biggest baccarat games in Las Vegas so the difference in table game revenue between Las Vegas Sands and Wynn doesn’t come as much of a surprise. The difference in slot machine revenue is a bit surprising since Las Vegas Sands has so many more slot machines between their properties.

Whatever the case people are losing a lot of money every day gambling in these casinos. If we do win the casino will just sue for their losses anyway.

MyVegas Gross Revenues Are $60 Million

MyVegas Logo
MyVegas

Last month I learned that social casino revenue is almost $3 billion a year. I thought it was a lot but this is more than I would have ever expected. More specifically I learned that a good chunk of social casino revenue comes from MyVegas. MyVegas’ gross revenues are about $60 million!

(Eilers Research gaming analyst Adam) Krejcik said Eilers Research lists PlayStudios as the eighth largest publisher of social casino games worldwide with a run-rate to achieve more than $60 million in gross revenue this year. The revenue comes from customers buying tokens.

Overwhelmingly the people I know personally and online that play MyVegas view it as a free game. They take the daily free chip allotment and try to win prizes. It’s a fun way for some people to waste time. At the same time other people may not find the game worth their time after doing the math to see how much those prizes actually cost in time. Neither sides of the fence are wrong. It’s just preference.

Buy MyVegas Chips On Facebook
Buy MyVegas Chips

It’s easy to see how MyVegas could make so much revenue just from chip sales even if only a small percentage of players ever spend a dollar. Chips don’t equal rewards. Chips just allow you to play the game. The chips allow you to earn loyalty points which you exchange for prizes.

If the players hits a cold streak while playing with a lot of chips at once those 3 million chips you purchased for $199 will be gone in a few minutes. If the player doesn’t earn the reward that they’re playing for it’s easy to dip back into the wallet, more likely a purse, to grab the credit card and buy more chips.

Just like real gambling $400 or $600 the player may win 2 nights at a hotel that would have cost $300 otherwise. Just like casino gambling who am I to mock someone else’s fun?

Is social gaming the future of mainstream gambling? Social casino revenue is growing rapidly. It may not be the future alone but it will be around for a while.