Sunday, July 20, 2008

Just Back from the City of Sin!

I just returned from 4 more nights in Vegas. I did the first night at Circus Circus then one night at Bill's Gambling Hall and finished with two nights at Mandalay Bay. Interestingly, all three rooms were recently remodeled. It was a guys trip with a bunch of old friends from around the country meeting up for the first time in years. Needless to say, it was a very different trip than when I am with the wife!

There will be quite a few updates over the coming days. I will have room pics and reviews of all 3 hotels (CC wasn't that bad, really!) plus a bunch of property map and other miscellaneous updates. Check in through the week for new stuff!

In other miscellaneous Vegas news of note while I was gone... The Clark County Commission voted last week to proceed with a new terminal at McCarran Airport at a cost of $1.7 billion despite opposition from the airline industry themselves. They claim that there is a need to re-evaluate the need for the terminal in the face of $140 oil.

This is a tough call for airport officials. In the past, every new hotel room that got built also got filled. With new rooms comes the need for more airport capacity. There are 30,000 room coming online in the next 3 or 4 years; they need to be able to get bodies into town. On the other hand, is this downturn unlike others Vegas has faced in the past? Many before have all but counted Vegas as dead and they have all been wrong. Are things different this time around. Of course, I believe the answer lies somewhere in the middle. I don't think that prices of rooms, shows and meals will continue as they have in the past. The days of charging $400 are over. There will be a return to value, at least on some level, that will make Vegas appealing once again to the average American. The airport guys need to look at every way to squeeze capacity out of the existing terminal and perhaps scaling back plans for a new terminal to something a little less ambitous. After all, the people who have to pay for this thing are the ones who use the airport. I know the temptation is almost irresistable for government but don't screw us more than is absolutely necessary.

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