M Resort boldly opens sunday night to a worsening economic environment each day. Combined with the fact that it is 10 miles south of the strip, the place faces an uphill battle with a $1 billion price tag. However, owner Anthony Marnell is saying all of the right things to succeed in the new Vegas reality. The son of Rio builder/owner (as well as Wynn and a half dozen other casinos) Tony Marnell, his marketing pitch is similar to what made Rio successful when it opened, a nice place and a great value. No "$15 martinis and $90 Steaks."
He also plans on focusing on the customer, screening all employees for a "friendly attitude." Sure everyone says that, he will have to actually do it to pull it off. One thing he did say that shows me that he "gets it" in the new Vegas...
“People don’t care about all this bigger and better stuff. They come here with their hard-earned money — and every day they realize how hard-earned it is — and they’re going to spend it where they’re going to get value. They want to know that they are going be taken care of, and that you’re going to treat them like they want to be treated.”
I have been beating the same drum for almost a year now and its similar to the philosophy of his neighbor to the north at South Point. There was a time when Vegas was universally recognized as a cheap vacation. How quickly has it become the symbol of decadance? President Obama has basically made it criminal to book a convention in town because it is now the land of the $400 bottle of Gray Goose. Vegas needs to get back to value... in the hotel, restaurants and especially the casino.
If all goes well I should have some pics and a property map early next week. Good luck Mr. Marnell, may the gambling gods smile upon you!
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