Vital Vegas

Progress Report: Las Vegas Arena, The Park and Monte Carlo Theater

There’s a dizzying number of new things coming to the space between New York-New York and Monte Carlo, so we thought it about time to share some photos, video and a few words to keep those things from slapping into each other.

First up, here’s a look at the current state of the Las Vegas Arena, also called the T-Mobile Arena. This 20,000-seat gem is going to be a magnet for sports and concerts, and it looks like a million bucks.

Actually, the Las Vegas Arena looks like $375 million bucks, but who’s counting?

The arena’s seats have been installed, a far cry from just a few months ago when we popped in to take another metric ass-ton of photos.

Now, a mesh video screen is being installed on the arena’s eastern face.

That one dude, though.

Here’s a closer look at both the mesh installation and the dude.

Hero move.

We caught the first test of the Las Vegas Arena’s video screen at night, and it was very what you might call “T-Mobile magenta.”

T-Mobile, of course, snagged naming rights to the arena. We just like the sound of Las Vegas Arena better.

Motion graphic designer’s like, “Done!”

The Las Vegas Arena opens April 6, 2016, with a show by The Killers as a kick-off.

Here’s a peek behind the arena.

At this point, you may be obsessing over a construction site a tad too much. Somebody needed to say it.

Note that there’s a new ramp jutting out of the New York-New York parking lot (at left) to help ease traffic congestion.

There’s another bridge connecting the parking garage and the arena.

You gotta know when to hold ’em, know when to scaffold ’em.

Outside the Las Vegas Arena, concrete is being poured.

We trust these wooden thingys are where concrete is being poured. For all you know, they could be called “thingys,” so don’t get snippy.

The Park is beginning to look more like a park.

The Park, of course, is a pedestrian promenade that runs from Las Vegas Boulevard to the arena.

The Park could very well mark the return of promenading, once popular with square dancers. Oh, like you’re reading all this gibberish, anyway. Just look at the pictures.

MGM Resorts has invested a lot of time and money creating a diverse collection of desert-adaptive plants people will soon stroll right by on their way to the hooch.

Seriously, though, MGM Resorts has spent a lot of time thinking about all this.

The Park will have “breathtaking monumental shade structures, theatrical lighting, dynamic water features and meta-quartzite stone sourced from a local quarry.”

How we’ve managed to enjoy the Las Vegas Strip prior to it having some meta-quartzite stone, we’ll never know.

The Park will be lined not only with trees and shade structures (more on those in a minute), but also shops and restaurants and bars, especially bars.

The Park will have a gourmet waffle restaurant, Bruxie, a sushi restaurant, Sake Rok, a beer garden and other dining and drinking options.

The Park will also boast a Robert Mondavi Jr. Wine Experience, Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row and Cuba Libre, a Havana-style restaurant and bar. Read more about the Las Vegas newness.

Check out our photo gallery below for more photos of the storefronts.

Before we move on, MGM Resorts has finally gotten around to confirming some news we reported exclusively a few weeks ago. A 40-foot-tall naked woman will soon be erected in The Park. The sculpture is called Bliss Dance, and “erected” is right. Read more.

That’s a palm tree. She’s not European.

The Bliss Dance sculpture is the work of artist Marco Cochrane and was originally created for the Burning Man Festival. It weighs about 7,500 pounds, took 10,000 hours to build and will be lit up by 3,000 LED lights.

The Bliss Dance statue will be installed at The Park on Feb. 29, 2016, making future anniversaries of the installation few and far between.

Now, about those shade structures. They don’t appear to have an official name, but they’re a distinctive element of The Park.

The ear trumpet structures were built by IHC Studio Metalix in the Netherlands, a ship-building company. Each structure took an astonishing 2,000 hours to complete. Naps and smoke breaks are apparently very popular in the Netherlands.

The 16 flower-inspired colander cones range from 55 feet to 75 feet in height. Hey, one of these names is going to stick, and we’d prefer it be ours.

Each of the botanical bugles has about 1,200 holes, which are intended to cast patterns on the ground.

Shade is going to become a critical part of The Park experience, especially given the fact Las Vegas becomes a massive kiln during the summer months (typically, March 1 through November 30). Which is why outdoor spaces are a relatively recent phenomenon in Las Vegas. Because things tend to shrivel up and blow away there. The good folks at MGM Resorts haven’t talked about that too much in their news releases, for some reason.

That said, the holey tulips are striking, and truly come to life at night. Take a look.

The average weight of each structure is between 12 and 20 metric tons, depending upon where it had lunch.

At night, the structures will glow, and the colors will change on the quarter hour, commonly known as “every 15 minutes,” or about the time it takes this blog to have sex 15 times.

While already lovely, the thousands of LEDs that will illuminate the structures haven’t even been installed yet!

These impressive structures should be a popular new photo op on the Las Vegas Strip.

The Park is set to open April 4, 2016, a couple of days before the Las Vegas Arena debuts.

Here’s a little video to help give you an idea of where everything is. Please note the large steel structure attached to the side of Monte Carlo. We’ll be talking about that next.

While much of the focus has been on the arena and The Park, quick work is being made of a new 5,000-seat theater at Monte Carlo.

The new Monte Carlo theater is about the size to give The Colosseum at Caesars and Axis Theater at Planet Hollywood a run for their money.

Here’s another look at the Monte Carlo theater (whose existence was first reported in this very blog, of course), although it won’t be called the Monte Carlo theater when it opens in late 2016. Monte Carlo is getting a new name, so the theater will follow suit.

Monte Carlo’s new theater necessitated Blue Man Group getting the boot to Luxor, which necessitated Jabbawockeez getting the boot to MGM Grand. Never a dull moment in Vegas.

Monte Carlo’s new name remains a delicious Las Vegas mystery.

Please feel free to dive headlong into our gratuitous, showboaty photo gallery of pics from the Las Vegas Arena, The Park and Monte Carlo theater. We can’t wait to see our first shows at the arena and Monte Carlo theater, and are truly looking forward to promenading at The Park in the shade of giant, honeycombed cactus blossoms. Or whatever.

Arena, Park and Monte Carlo Theater Update

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