The Hakkasan Hotel at MGM Grand
In February 2014, VegasTripping reported that MGM Resorts International had inked a deal with Hakkasan Limited to develop a Hakkasan hotel at MGM Grand. A month ago, the two companies publicly announced their partnership in less concrete terms via the creation of MGM Hakkasan Hospitality with the express goal of extending brand reach to non-gaming locales world wide.
They made no mention of an actual hotel, in Las Vegas or otherwise.
When I first heard the rumors, I fired up the property map, peeps the PR beauty shot and studied the aerial view to try and deduce where a Hakkasan Hotel at MGM Grand might best be located. Would MGM go cheap and rebrand of one of the hotel wings? Slice and dice the Skylofts for Hakkasan? Or get out the wrecking ball and build something new? I came to the conclusion that MGM would rebrand and enhance the West Wing (aka Marina rooms) with an Asian theme. As it turns, out I was right.
MGM will be building a new Hakkasan branded hotel tower in two segments.
The first is an expansion of the south half of the West Wing, which will rise approximately two floors above the lowest Skyloft patio and expand south to abut the existing casino podium, engulfing the small desertscape courtyard.
The second segment is an angular, Vdara-inspired, bi-level, dual adjoining tower which starts at the West Wing elevator shaft and dog legs southwards along The Strip, rising to its apex at the mouth of the pedestrian bridge to New York-New York. The lower floors of the Strip facing building will feature outdoor dining areas, bars and probably more nightlife options. The new tower expansion will be about as tall as the existing, renovated MGM Grand marquee at its apex with curtain wall using a green version of Hakkasan's Tetris pattern. A large HK logo will emblazoned on the east tower in yellow. The existing MGM marquee will be modified once again, with the right sign posts removed and MGM logo resized to fit atop the existing LED screen.
Rebuilding this portion of MGM Grand certainly fits in with MRI's urban planning motif, extending what is happening on the opposite side of the street over to MGM's front door. Restaurants will be opened up to Strip views, visibility increases, rents go up. Aesthetically, doing the glass curtainwall a la Hakkasan isn't my cup of tea, but if this is the price MGM has to pay to feed the whale (Hakkasan) while driving their hooks in deeper, (a la CityCenter / Dubai World) then go for it.
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