Here’s What’s Really Happening at Resorts World

Resorts World. It’s an enigma.

The Asian-themed resort from Genting Group is being built on the bones of the abandoned Echelon Place project.

Resorts World broke ground on May 5, 2015. Since then, progress on the bajillion-dollar resort has been agonizingly slow.

Here’s a look at Resorts World today.

Resorts World Las Vegas

Resorts World seems to be perpetually preparing for something to happen.

Oh, yes, there are cranes.

They showed up in late 2017, creating a warmth in our loin we had not experienced in some time given the repeated delays in construction of the $4 billion, 3,000-room hotel-casino.

The arrival of the cranes at Resorts World followed on the heels of hoopla about a construction manager being hired, as well as word Genting had finalized $400 million in contracts with vendors.

Anticipation was at an all-time high that Resorts World would actually be a thing.

Then came months and months of not a whole lot.

Resorts World has said publicly there are 400 workers on the site now.

Resorts World Las Vegas

It was on the Internet, it must be true.

From our observations, Resorts World either has a counting problem or a lying problem. Since casinos never lie, we’ll just assume the official Resorts World abacus is in the shop.

Here’s a look at the Resorts World site.

Four hundred constructions workers? The over/under was about a dozen during our most recent visit.

Resorts World claimed it would have 1,000 construction workers on-site by early 2018. Yeah, not so much.

Unless the construction workers at Resorts World are wearing cloaks of invisibility, it appears the only thing Resorts World is building at the moment is an exemplary record of horseshittery.

Still, there are some symbolic things happening at Resorts World. Beyond the crane theater, that is.

For the most part, those things are orange.

Resorts World Las Vegas

It’s happening at a sloth’s pace, but Resorts World appears to be increasing the size of its erection.

We are not a construction expert, but it appears concrete is being poured at various parts of the Resorts World hotel tower.

Here’s another orange thing.

Resorts World Las Vegas

This is undeniably a thing.

And let’s not forget this orange thing on the Strip-facing wall of the structure.

Resorts World Las Vegas

Most concrete mixes reach 70% of specified compressive strength after seven days, whatever that might actually mean.

Update (3/28/18): A rep of Forming Concepts, Inc. has informed us those orange things are the company’s “formwork,” specifically, “elevator core forms and shear wall lifters.” The forms represent 39 truckloads of equipment. We look forward to learning more!

Another area of progress is what’s been described as a “swatch” on the exterior of the Resorts World tower. We should know because we’re the one who described it that way. You can see it on the lower left of the photo above.

The “swatch” is a test of what the exterior of the hotel could look like, we assume.

Here’s how it looked in July 2017.

Resorts World Las Vegas

We got really excited about this at the time.

Now, here’s what the exterior samples looked like in Sep. 2017.

Resorts World Las Vegas

This reflective version of the exterior would’ve been very helpful for shaving.

Here’s what the exterior test looks like today.

Resorts World Las Vegas

Yes, we have issues, we’re not saying we don’t have issues.

Somebody’s taking a lot of time considering materials and color combinations to determine what Resorts World will ultimately look like.

As we’re rooting for Resorts World to become a reality, we’re going to go with “slow and steady wins the race” as Genting’s construction philosophy.

An alternative philosophy might be, “We’re not opening until we’re sure this puppy is going to make a profit.”

Resorts World Las Vegas

Hey, the crane guy wants to feel like he’s doing something, so just play along.

Resorts World sits at the north end of The Strip, so it could very well be waiting for the Las Vegas Convention Center expansion, the opening of The Drew (formerly Fountainebleau), the opening of Paradise Park (formerly Wynn Paradise Park), a renovation for The Strat (formerly Stratosphere), a new direction for SLS Las Vegas (formerly Sahara) and the sale of Lucky Dragon (formerly not in bankruptcy).

That’s right, it could very well be Resorts World is biding its time until there’s critical mass at the north end of The Strip. That’s what we’d do.

If we were building a $4 billion Las Vegas resort. With all our mountains of blog money.

Resorts World Las Vegas

Baby steps are still steps.

Ultimately, progress is progress, even if it isn’t readily discernible to the naked eye.

Here’s hoping “slow and steady” gives way to “a metric hell-ton of construction activity” in the months to come.

We can’t bear any more heartbreak at the former home of our beloved Stardust.

33 thoughts on “Here’s What’s Really Happening at Resorts World

    1. Coop

      Spinning tonight we have all the way from Fremont Street Experience in Las Vegas. The marketing guy “Blog Money Horseshittery”

      Reply
  1. Manybar Goatfish

    It’s going to be a photo-finish to determine the winner. Will it be Resorts World or the Border Wall (fence).

    Reply
  2. Danielle Fawn Watson

    The eyesore for all those years really stinks…Well, I sure hope this one does well as they have a good location for sure! At least they’re finishing up yet another vacant piece of the strip. Happy to see we are coming around with a tad more growth and construction… at least until the major stuff starts being built 2019-21.

    Reply
  3. FYMYAWF

    It seems like ALL Genting is doing is “biding their time”. Oh, SLS is has a buyer? I’ll put up a crane! But wait, Lucky Dragon just went into bankruptcy, we’ll give the crane operator the year off. Fontainebleau has finally been sold? Lets change the window swatch! But Steve Wynn couldn’t keep his hands off the help? Let’s just stop building after we complete the parking garage.

    If you have the funding – build the damn thing. If you’re going to keep waiting for a guaranteed decade of financial upswing to cover your construction costs, it ain’t going to happen.

    Reply
  4. Ronnie Casaus II

    Why dont you take pictures when it has all the Union workers building the Resort World are at work, and quit complaining about how slow it is going for your taste . Be greatfull like the the rest of us Las Vegas residents who are Greatful to see our city building another awsome Resort in our city…

    Reply
      1. Manybar Goatfish

        It’s interesting that Genting is a subsidiary of a parent company that has “oil palm” interests. That tells you everything you need to know.

        Reply
      2. Vegas Todd

        I highly doubt that Ronnie works in the PR department at Genting.
        His grammar and sentence structure suggest other employment.
        Perhaps he hoses down the Genting work truck …?

        Reply
        1. fantastic!

          Personally I think Ronnie is misinformed. You can go to the top of the southern Circus Circus garage and clearly see there are a dozen or so people working on the entire site during the workday. With that being said a Laborer on that jobsite makes $50. an hour (30 on the paycheck and 20 in benefits). You can look down all you want at someone who hoses down a work truck but when he’s earning $12.00 and hour just on his pension alone, I doubt he cares even the littlest what you think.

          Reply
          1. Vegas Todd

            Well fantastic, what do I know. I’m the owner/operator of a shine box and drum on plastic buckets on the weekends.

      1. Manybar Goatfish

        If the pay is so good and the work is so easy, where do I sign up? They’ll hire anybody, right? No skills required? Just lean on a shovel handle and drink Pepsi all day? I hope you’re right! I’m going to find out.

        Reply
    1. Scott Roeben

      It’s more an observation than a complaint. The complaint is with the fact they’re trying to keep up appearances, but progress is very slow by any measure. Agree, it’ll be great when, and if, this really gets going!

      Reply
  5. Mike L

    You have to look at the clever way they worded that. They didn’t say 400 CURRENTLY on site or even on site DAILY, they said “at last count”. They are probably counting every sub-contractor that has gone on that site since the project started – which would easily be 400. It’s all about wording and presentation…

    Reply
  6. Funkhouser

    I think all the operators planning expansion are lining up waiting on convention construction to begin and are timing their openings against the NFL Stadium completion. Both of those events have direct impact on room demand and bookings. 91.3% was the occupancy rate in 2017. Move the needle another two percentage points and you will see the operators get off their arse and race to completion. Wynn resorts proved its always better to be over capitalized, so it’s little risk for them to sit on their hands watching growth numbers, their lenders will thank them for it, since it’s booked deals that pose less risk to the lender if market demand numbers keep climbing.

    Reply
    1. Scott Roeben

      Great point–it’ll be interesting to see what impact Raiders have. Convention Center expansion seems a much bigger factor, but it’s everything in combination.

      Reply
  7. fantastic!

    This is a great story because you guys focus on the truth and disregard anything Genting claims. As an industry insider I can confirm that an occasional construction worker is called out to Resorts World to perform concrete work. One or two at a time and one or two per week at the most. In contrast if the project was gearing up for full production there would be dozens of workers called out each day for months. As you can see from the lack of major activity Genting continues its marketing campaign to give the layperson the impression the project is in full swing. I don’t know why they persist doing this but it could be to recieve more investment money which I understand is over a billion dollars now. They may have a certain goal in mind and they continue to perform minimal work until they actually decide to let the floodgates open and actually build the project. The scale of this resort is similar to city center and if you recall there were thousands of construction workers from all the trades there at once. What’s happening at Resorts world now is nothing compared with that. As disappointed I am with their campaign to misinform I’m glad they are showing us their true colors on how they intend to do business in Vegas. To say they can’t be trusted is an understatement.

    Reply
    1. Scott Roeben

      Thanks for the insights. Yeah, they seem invested in presenting to the public (perhaps to financial folks) that it’s rolling right along, but nobody’s seen more than a dozen people on the site at any given time. That trust factor is important given that it’s a casino. If they’re stalling, they can just say so.

      Reply
  8. Jennifer Baum Knudtson

    All that orange you are curious about…..that’s Forming Concepts’ formwork (elevator core forms and shear wall lifters). We are proud to be a part of this project. Check us out on Facebook and LinkedIn!

    Reply
  9. Jennifer Baum Knudtson

    That whole lot of nothing that’s been going on since the beginning of 2018 was the asssembly of Forming Concepts’ forms-39 truckloads of equipment. A couple of those cores have lifted for the first time. That thing is going to fly soon.

    Reply
    1. Scott Roeben

      Hey, Jennifer, thanks so much for the information! I’d love to hear more, so will definitely connect via the means you mentioned. I’ll update the story to include those items, despite my having no idea what they are at this point!

      Reply
  10. Manybar Goatfish

    Let’s face the reality that if a dozen (union) construction workers a day, for three years, are solely responsible for the structure as seen in the photos above, those are some pretty amazing workers. No matter how much they are getting paid, it’s not enough. If twelve of us who post stupid stuff on Vital Vegas were to meet at that location for three years with the intention erecting the structure that stands there today, all we would see is bare ground with several thousand beer cans and a few hundred empty Captain Morgan bottles scattered around. Case closed.

    Reply
    1. Mike L

      “and a few hundred empty Captain Morgan bottles scattered around” I agree, Scott needs to pickup after himself.

      Reply
  11. Graham Moody

    While the scepticism of most is understandable, my bet is that it’s unmerited this time. Genting might be a big tease, but they’re also a major operator and they know what they’re doing. They are not going to pay to rent a bunch of tower cranes unless they plan to lift stuff, and they’re not going to pay to rent a bunch of forms and pumps unless they plan to pour concrete. Jennifer from the form company can no doubt tell us just how expensive that kit is to have on site doing nothing!
    Based on watching a lot of buildings go up where I’m from (yeah I’m a geek for that as well as Vegas), these things seem like not much is happening while the forms go on, then boom, it goes up a floor a week. No obvious progress does not equal no progress.

    Or….maybe I just can’t stand the idea of another decade looking at a dirt lot with a few scraps of concrete and rebar on it when I come to town.

    Reply
  12. David

    I agree with the above.

    They aren’t going to be renting 4 massive cranes if they aren’t planning construction.

    Those things cost millions of dollars.

    Reply

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