The $4 billion Resorts World Las Vegas, led by veteran casino industry executive Edward Farrell, is the first mega-resort to be built from the ground up on the Strip in a decade.
The original opening was slated for 2016, but after multiple delays, the opening date has been pushed back once again to 2020.Both developer and top-elected official in Clark Country, where the property is located, are confident the project will be finished.
“There were a lot of stops and starts with this project, some redesigns, but from the dialogue we had this morning, I’m very convinced that they’ve got a plan moving forward, and they are committed to a specific timeframe,” said Clark County commission chairman Steve Sisolak.
Malaysia-based Genting Group, owners of multiple resort-casinos around the world, bought the Las Vegas property back in 2013 from Boyd Gaming for $350 million. The original plans included a hotel tower with 3,307 rooms and suites, a 657,000 sq ft public space with convention facilities and a movie theater. The design aim was to highlight the country’s 34 administrative regions and its 56 minority ethnic groups, paying tribute to the diversity of real Chinese life.
“To have the ability to experience the authentic history, culture and cuisine of China in Las Vegas, within a few hours’ flight from all U.S. cities, will provide yet another compelling reason to visit or to revisit Las Vegas,” said K.T. Lim, CEO of Genting. “And it will not be just old China that visitors will see, but also the vibrant new China — a true representation of the importance of this ongoing and ever-growing relationship across the Pacific in this century.”
This initial design concept was somewhat dated, and is the main reason for the latest delay, as an overhaul of the design was required in a move to appeal to younger gamers.
“The initial drawing had a lot of traditional, older Chinese architecture and elements that were within it,” said Farrell, whose appointment was announced Wednesday. “The company has really taken a look at the market in Las Vegas throughout the past couple of years, and it has really shifted to something that’s much more modern.”
As a result, the redesign will give the project a much younger and modern look and feel, with a comparison made to Shanghai rather than Beijing.
Despite all the delays the development has face, Farrell told reporters the company is done with design and has a list of finalists of potential contractors based in Las Vegas with experience in building large Strip resorts.
Construction should start within the next few months, beginning with installation of tower cranes to start work on the casino structure and the hotel towers, and aims for completion in 2020.