SLS Las Vegas Evolution Continues With New Foundry Theater and Restaurant Shake-Up

The times they are a-changin’ at SLS Las Vegas. Again.

SLS Las Vegas is making some dramatic moves to adjust to a number of business challenges,
including converting its former Life nightclub space into a full-fledged, 1,800-seat theater. The new theater will reportedly be called Foundry Hall, and the venue will be a collaboration with a music and live events company, Live Nation.

SLS Las Vegas

Life at SLS will get a new life as the Foundry Theater.

It remains to be seen what kinds of entertainment will find its way to the Foundry Hall theater, but a ticketed concert venue seems to make sense in terms of attracting new blood to the financially-struggling resort.

Foundry Hall sits in the space formerly occupied by the Sahara Theater. It was once
believed nightlife would be a key to the success of SLS, so things have come full circle. Life
nightclub never met expectations and closed in July 2015, as this blog reported first, because that’s how we roll.

While we can’t share the details of the restaurant changes at the moment, the overall strategy
will be to eliminate the weaker performing offerings and introduce more value-oriented fare.

At first, we feared our favorite restaurant at SLS, Cleo, would get the axe.

Cleo SLS Las Vegas

If you’re not doing the Chicken Tagine at Cleo on every visit, you may be doing Vegas wrong.

It was recently announced SBE Entertainment CEO Sam Nazarian would sell his 10 percent ownership stake in SLS. When SLS opened, it was steeped in SBE brands and partnerships.

As Nazarian moved away from direct involvement in SLS, some of the partnerships shifted, too. For example, all seven Fred Segal shops closed at the hotel, with several being replaced by internally-managed retail stores.

SLS concierge lounge

The former Fred Segal jewelry store has been converted into a swanky concierge lounge.

Other changes have been less noticeable, but we noticed, anyway.

SLS Las Vegas

When SLS opened, this wall was adorned with executive bios. Now, not so much.

In July 2015, there were also reports SBE was going sell off its Cleo and Katsuya brands. Rumor
has it that deal isn’t actually going to happen, which means Cleo and Katsuya, are likely to stick around. The plan is for SBE to continue to license its brands to SLS Las Vegas’ owner, Stockbridge Real Estate.

Here’s more about Cleo, a Mediterranean restaurant we fully realize we shouldn’t form an emotional attachment to, yet definitely have.

Cleo SLS Las Vegas

Yes, we have deep feelings for Cleo’s flatbread. Want to make something of it?

There’s no word on what will happen with Bazaar Meat, but it does not appear to be part of the
upcoming changes. Again, Bazaar Meat opened at SLS due to an existing relationship between chef José Andrés and Sam Nazarian’s SBE. The bottom line is it’ll stay at SLS as long as it’s
profitable, and we’ve heard it’s doing well.

Bazaar Meat SLS Las Vegas

We can’t overstate how much you’ll never forget your visit to Bazaar Meat.

What other changes will happen at SLS now that SBE and Sam Nazarian are out of the picture? Who knows?

SLS Las Vegas statue

We have serious questions about the possible fate of the Sam Nazarian-inspired statue in front of SLS. We kid because we love.

One recent change at SLS was the addition of a party pit with go-go dancers, which this Las Vegas blog universally supports as a casino marketing strategy.

SLS party pit

Any casino can benefit from more party.

SLS Las Vegas is at a critical juncture at the moment.

The resort lost $83.9 million in the first six months of 2015, so there’s a good deal of pressure for the resort to kick revenue-generation into high gear.

SLS Las Vegas suite

We’re a big fan of the SLS suites, and not just because of the mirror over the bed. Probably.

There’s been a fair amount of time to see what works (Cleo) and what doesn’t (SBE managing the place), and to re-evaluate the resort’s core customer base (it’s a far cry from what management thought it was at opening).

SBE at SLS

One of the few remaining traces of SBE at SLS can be seen in the hotel’s valet area.

We’re rooting for SLS Las Vegas to find its mojo, to continue to get leaner and to become the
success Las Vegas fans continue to hope it can be. Foundry Hall seems like a step in the right direction.

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  • Wally Marshall

    Now that Nazarian and more importantly, his crew are gone, maybe the after dark crowds will improve, the amount of cars stolen out of the garage will decrease and the rampant bathroom drug use will go away. The bank has a big handful to cleanup with this guys departure. Best thing that could happen with the property. After the bank settles in, ill solicit the business once again. It got so bad with Nazarian at the helm that i just didn’t feel comfortable there at all at night. It was like a hangout for brazen gangsters and just creepy groups of guys that you didn’t dare make eye contact with.

    • Interesting. Another rumor has it they won’t be scheduling any hip-hop artists in 2016, presumably to change the mix of customers. We’re optimistic the $13 cocktails will be going away, too.

  • boulder steve

    Sounds like there making some positive changes. Hopefully it’s not too late. Many people have given up on the SLS. I’ll give them a few months to implement the changes and check it out.There running out of chances to do things right.