Home » VT News » Linq: Sayonara O'Shea's, Imperial Palace

Linq: Sayonara O'Shea's, Imperial Palace

By Chuckmonster on Monday, 15th August 2011 4:05pm
  » filed under Las Vegas  comments: 18


Linq Vegas Ferris Wheel

By now, we've all heard about Caesars Entertainment Corporation's plans to turn the alleyway between Flamingo and O'Shea's into an outdoor entertainment district capped off by a giant ferris wheel just beyond the monorail tracks. The prevailing thoughts related to this project are... 'another ferris wheel?' 'really?' 'does the strip need more shopping?' 'how are they gonna pay for this?' and 'why?' all of which mistake the forest for the trees.

Linq is coming for sure, as a press event on Wednesday will reveal, and it is much bigger than any of us has previously understood.

Thanks to a generous VT reader, we have spent the last few days studying the architectural plans for Project Linq, and have deduced that this isn't just an excuse to put a ferris wheel on the strip but the kick off point of the storied Harrah's America project we outlined about five years ago.

The Linq plan is ambitious and will include a near total demolition of O'Shea's (sayonara!) and a thorough thrashing of the Imperial Palace from the strip to the east end of the south casino cage. The tennis and volleyball courts at Flamingo will also be demolished and repurposed as a loading dock to replace the one at O'Shea's that will be demolished.

The Margaritaville casino expansion is a smaller part of the Linq strategy, one that I feel, when ultimately completed, will include the entire Bills/Flamingo/IP/Harrah's block... Linq'ing these properties into one gigantic amalgam much like Paris/Ballys/Planet Hollywood.

Harrah's has released the below rendering of what O'Shea's and Imperial Palace will look like when completed (O'Linq's Palace?) The stippled blue IP towers will most likely be all digital signage. Check out the freaky electronic cyclone thingy on the rooftop of the new O'Shea's. Odds that it will be a nightclub: 6:5.

O'Linq's Casino

Everything within the red line in the illustration below will be touched in one form or another during Linq's construction process. Click here for a higher resolution version of the site plan.

Linq Project Plan

All of O'Shea's parking garages will be demolished to make way for open plaza area and new construction that will house retail, dining and other rides in the Linq project. The IP strip side porte cochere will removed and replaced with a completely new frontage built around a walkway which will connect Linq to Harrah's Carnival Court. There will be numerous points of egress from the IP and Flamingo reconstructions into Linq, linking Flamingo, IP and Harrah's via an off-Strip pathway.

Looking at these plans, it is apparent that Linq is destined to spread to the furthest reaches of Harrah's strip side empire.

Flamingo's hotel towers are still structurally viable and might only need some exterior refreshing (paint it pink!) to fit in with the contemporary Linq stylings. The addition of the Margaritaville casino at Flamingo will probably spur a full refresh of the rest of its casino floor and public areas. It is probably safe to assume that there will always be a Flamingo hotel at this location for the rest of eternity.

Bill's can easily be engulfed into a new Flamingo, or be turned into a modern boutique Drai's hotel as was leaked last year.

Imperial Palace seems to be ripe for total demolition during the second phase of the Linq project. It is within the realm of possibilities that Imperial Palace may close for a stretch of time during these major renovations, or the hotel towers may end up as adjunct Harrah's Resort towers, with check in and reservations handled through Harrah's. Another possibility is that IP's rear towers and parking garage are imploded at the tail end of the casino renovation project, with phase II build of a new resort dovetailing.

Phase III could be simultaneous renovations and partial reconstruction of Harrah's and Flamingo, concurrent or staggered. Thrown in there could be addition of something - more hotels or an attraction - in IP's back yard where the apartment complex used to be.

Exciting times indeed. What we won't see is a CityCenter style, destroy and rebuild 4 plots at once at a frenetic pace project. This will be a measured, longer term project whose pace will be determined by the bean counting propellerheads at Caesars HQ, weighing every expense with the return on investment and proceeding cautiously throughout.

And, like that, a major construction project is on the precipice of returning to Las Vegas, hopefully signifying a turnaround in the economy and sending a shock of defibrillation through the corpses of the many stalled projects that litter the Las Vegas Strip.

Except the Las Vegas Plaza, because that thing is fucking ugly.

Tagged: linq   harrahs   caesars entertainment   flamingo   osheas   imperial palace   bills   construction   


Comments & Discussion:

So where exactly will they put the next Sugar Factory?

shame about the IP, if true. I'd actually love it if they'd dump some money into the old hag.

Yeah total shame about IP. I'd rather them renovate it than demolish the entire thing. Capri Rooms, yes I can see being demolished. But not the entire hotel. People come to Vegas to party and spend money, and the less they spend on a room, the more they can spend elsewhere and IP is an awesomely located super cheap hotel for people that fit the "spend less on room spend more on food" criteria. ...... :-(

remember, it is still unconfirmed that IP is going to be destroyed. at the very least the IP you know will be completely redone, destruction and rebuild is another possibility.

Where am I suposed to play crappy 100x craps now?

100x Craps is available at Casino Royale.

I wonder where Hash House will end up. Maybe in a new location within Linq?

I do like that rendering of O'Linqys. If they can manage to retain and re-utilize IP and some of the other spots over there in a meaningful way, I'd be pretty happy with that. I think the strip entrance for IP being destroyed and re-utilized is long overdue, that spot is worse use of strip frontage then Ballys. I'm definitely hopeful for what would essentially be the first major overhaul of strip properties, not just a refurb and re-imagined.

The car collection at Imperial Palace can temporarily reside in my yard during construction. I promise I'll move them around so the tires don't get flat-spotted.

Aren't they also building a highway in the sky a la the Jetsons?

What if I want a double whopper at 4:00 A.M.? WTF am I supposed to then "Project Linq?" And where will all the midgets work? Won't someone please think of the midgets!

These renderings that are being shared are especially exciting because they're getting rid of the absolutely gross facades of IP, O'Shea's, & Casino Royale (unless my memory is fuzzy, b/c I hate even walking on that side of the Strip in front of those three). The razzle dazzle mentality of Vegas demands that buildings evolve and keep up w/ the times--see Caesars as the textbook example of this.

As I rode onto the Strip from LAS my first time in Vegas seven years ago, it was daylight and I remember remarking how old and dirty so many of the hotels looked. This isn't the case anymore! Out with the old and in w/ the new coats of paint and/or hip steel facades that City Center has made so en vogue. Even Bally's, in all its hideous 1970s glory, has a few steel accents thrown around for good measure.

IP better still have a Hash House a Go Go or there will be trouble. The name Ling just doesn't work for me though. I keep imagining everyone who works in the area will be wearing nightgowns.

Anything to improve IP's strip access is a plus in my book. That is the most uninviting entrance in Vegas. Bally's gets a pass on that account because that huge strip frontage was the original parking lot, back when it was the MGM Grand.

@Rockchick - if they remove the lower cost rooms, then they can charge higher rates to stay at the other properties. Yeah it sucks to see a cheap place go, but the beanheads are probably excited about cutting back a small percentage of low revenue room capacity from theirs and vegas's inventory.

If this means that Carnival Court will be done away with, or can be navigated easier, I'm all for it..otherwise, how long is this all going to take to get to completion? And if somebody at Ceasers has some spare paint, how about using it on the Paris Balloon?

This still seems like a huge expense just to pay homage to the black guy from the Mod Squad.

Shame about IP losing the Stripside valet...that place is hands down my favorite place to leave my car when I'm slumming O'sheas & CC.

I'll cry if they get rid of O'Shea's. Maybe they can just move O'Shea's to Bill's. Both about the same wear & tear-wise internally.

Goal maybe to take the bands (and vibe from O'Shea's and try to move it to the new Margaritaville casino.

There's no place like O'Shea's when the bands are rockin', dice are rollin' and serious drinking going on. Who can fill that void? HRH, nope too much Axe Body Wash.. Trop? Nope, no vibe.. Slots Of Fun? Not a chance... Casino Royale? Nope, dealers are a 100 years old & not fun...

Comments Are Closed

Subscribe via RSS

Recent Comments:

michigan2010 posted: "MGM equals cookie cutter casino. No to reason to step foot in Bellagio again. Just hope they don't screw up..."
» Sayonara Bellagio Table Game Canopies...
saharalv posted: "I wish the editors were the entire electoral college in 2016...."
» Introducing the Trippies Class of...
fatbastard posted: "So many people letting a billionaire live rent free in their heads. Funny. Too bad it also detracts from the..."
» Introducing the Trippies Class of...
wpsteel66 posted: "Total bummer…talk about taking the class and uniqueness away from the Bellagio…another smart move on CEO Jim and making all..."
» Sayonara Bellagio Table Game Canopies...
damania posted: "Is there a podcast?..."
» Introducing the Trippies Class of...

» More Comments