Linq project:

Imperial Palace name to disappear from Strip

Linq project scheduled to be open by June 2013

Courtesy Caesars Entertainment

An artist’s rendering of the proposed restaurant/entertainment district, Project Linq.

Linq project developments

Linq project developments

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Caesars unveils details of Linq project, Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2011.

Project Linq

An artist's rendering of the proposed restaurant/entertainment district Project Linq. Launch slideshow »

Imperial Palace — not the Strip property, but the brand name — is losing its place on Las Vegas Boulevard as Caesars Entertainment launches a significant makeover of the mid-Strip with its $500 million Linq dining and entertainment complex.

Caesars officials have not come up with a replacement name or discussed why it was dropping the Imperial Palace name, which it has leased.

Caesars has leased the Imperial Palace name since acquiring the Asian-themed property in 2005. Imperial Palace was opened in 1979 by independent businessman Ralph Engelstad, who died in 2002.

Construction of the Linq, which will include up to 40 restaurants and bars as well as a 550-foot high observation wheel called High Roller, will begin next month, starting with refurbishing the exteriors of Caesars’ Imperial Palace and O’Sheas casinos. The entrance to the nearby Flamingo also will get a makeover.

The project is expected to be open by June 2013.

The O’Sheas brand won’t go away but will instead be incorporated into the Linq complex, which will connect to the Imperial Palace building.

The entertainment district, an outdoor streetscape similar in style and concept to The Grove in Los Angeles, will take shape along a corridor between O’Sheas and Flamingo on the east side of Las Vegas Boulevard.

Caesars executive Rick Mazer said the company hopes to minimize any disruption caused by construction. Mazer is president of the company’s Harrah’s Las Vegas, Flamingo, Imperial Palace, Bill’s and O’Sheas.

The Linq is expected to employ 3,000 construction workers and 15,000 permanent employees.

Tags: Linq


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Discussion 9 comments

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  1. Where can we vote to NOT have ferris wheels in Las Vegas. Didn't we learn in the 90's that carnival rides do not mix well with casinos? Ask the Sahara and Buffalo Bills how well their roller coasters worked out for them.

  2. Liz:
    Maybe I missed something, but WHAT exactly is "the Ling"? Does it have something to do with the money-providers, the developers, or just a new NAME to re-phrase and focus on their Asian theme? This re-development of the Imperial Palace has been needed for well over 15 years, and the ("skin") photos show it will have a more modern appeal.

    However, I hope that the several seperate, and added, buildings that comprise the maze of the Imperial Palace are TORN DOWN - and not isomehow, just ncoroporated into a new "skin" design. Getting throught the Imperial Palace NOW, is rather difficult - especially when you are hauling luggage with you.

    Even if such new-construction is part of the plan for "the Ling," I wonder about the potential for adding more congestion to the Strip, and Flamingo Road - since this is already a highly congested area.

    Finally, the question comes up as to whether this is the right time for Caesars to spend a half billion dollars (in this economy) to build a "new" hotel complex - especialy since they apparantly do not have enough emoney fo finish their new Caesars Palace tower.

    And that RING with "cabins" on it (that looks liike a Ferris Wheel) seems to be a bit over-the-top for a Strip attraction. I would have believed that Las Vegas (and Caesars management) learned something from Bob Stupak, when he built the Stratosphere Tower.

    There are other similar examples of non-money maker that have failed - such as the outdoor entertainment complex that MGM built in their "back 40" lot - which they eventually tore down a few years ago and replaced with nice up-scale high-roller rooms.

    Further, witness the lack of success of new construction: Fountainbleu, Frontier, Stardust, Trump Tower, Encore, et al - and we must include CityCenter. One could conclude that Las Vegas Hotel/Casinos (now, Caesars Palace) have short memories, and still continue to bet on volitile propositions - once again, off the crap table.

    I guess Caesars Palace management must either know something the rest of us do not know about the U.S. economy, or they are Supreme Optimists. In any case, I wish them Good Luck!

  3. For those that don't seem to understand, this is not a Carnival Farris wheel. This is an observation wheel that goes 550 feet in the air and holds 30 people per car so you can view the city. This is not a kiddie ride.

    This project will supply 3000 construction jobs and who knows how many other jobs once it is finished. It is their money, their property so let them run with it. It is costing the people of Vegas nothing for them to provide us some needed jobs and projects right now.

    This is the best time to build if you have the money, things are costing about half of what they did at the peak of the good times to build. Why wait until the costs are back up. This is the time to get the deals.

    Glad someone is doing something that will put people back to work.

  4. One more added observation that deserves a comment.
    I have been visiting and living in Las Vegas for more than 30 years. During that time - especially during the 1980's, Las Vegas began to become more of a "fun" place, (in-between trying to be a "family" town), RATHER THAN the ENTERTAINMENT destination that the Chamber of Commerce and the Viisitors Center were trying to promote.

    Their former slogan was: "Once Exciting City in One Amazing Place." In more recent years, Las Vegas has become an endangered species - partly because no one knows WHAT Las Vegas IS supposed to be anymore, and partly because the Casinos have allowed shiopping, pricing, and the lack of focus ion customer service (that results in customer satisfaction) to rule the day.

    Now, we have high-priced hotels, fun places to be in but not conducive to profit making. THE MONEY COMES FROM GAMBLING, and if it does not - then Las Vegas is in danger of becoming in COMPETITION with any other "fantasy land" or amusement park in America.

    The EDGE that Las Vegas has always had, is eroding. Its IMAGE that used to draw visitors (ADULTS, please!), is not a playgoround for anyone with a pair of shorts and flip-flops. NO NEED for a dress code, and not need to gamble. Just show up, and you don't have to "contribute" to the "gambling" business model

    By the way, Gambling is NOT a Game, unless you want to call it a "Game of Chance" - in which you GAMBLE by placing bets, wagers, etc - in other words: risk MONEY). The reason I mention this is because the ORIGINAL business model for Casinos - years ago - is being lost in favor of other ammenities.

    And frankly, I do not see how Las Vegas will ever continue to financially survive the new "playgrounds" being developed which are based on things OTHER THAN Gambling activites. The danger is that the new trend of diversified and competing venues being offered - are reducing the revenues (the win) and profits that used to be gained from Gambling activities.

    Ever since the peripheral shopping, room pricing, food, and cost of entertainment profits exceeded the Gambling WIN (for the first time) about 10 years ago - the PROFITS that used to make Gambling KING have been lower than other cost centers.

    As a result, it is my opinion that the cost-benefit ratio has changed from one of DIRECT PROFITS from Gambling activities, to added costs incurred from NON-GAMING activities; particularly from routine maintenance, additional staff expenses, .and other overhead expenses that EAT INTO PROFITS gained from those "peripheral" cost-centers and activities.

    I would like to see Las Vegas focus - once again - predominately on Gaming (Gambling). After all, WITHOUT all the Gambling opportunities - in this Exciting and Amazing place - Las Vegas might just become an "also ran," and lose its alure to similar amusement competition elsewhere.

    And become just a "DISNEYLAND WEST"?

  5. Here is what a lot of us know.....the most fun to be had on the strip is from Barbary Coast (Bill's) up to & including the Imperial Palace. Great times to be had while not having to give up your wallet to do it. One can even place a $5 blackjack bet, heaven forbid. Spending 500 mil translates into an increase in minimun bets. Can't you just let some things alone?

  6. The sooner they lose the Imperial Palace name, the better. That name is not doing them any favors and they were leasing it to make matters worse. That's like leasing a Pinto.

    To all who say Caesars doesn't have the money to spend on this project: you can't make more without spending more. It's a risk that any business hoping to make more money eventually has to take.The Wheel seems a bit much considering the odd location and there is no way that two will work in this city in such a close proximity.

    A lot will happen in two years.

  7. The Socratic Inkwell, nothing personal and for someone that has been a Las Vegas visitor for many years, you seem a bit out of touch with the facts and what is really happening.

    I would love for you to contact me through the system here because I would love to debate your comments.

    I simply think you are missing the point.

    While I don't disagree with everything you said I don't agree with quite a bit of your observations.

  8. I hope they keep that awful stench in that dump.LOL

  9. Anybody want to make bets on what tickets for that wheel will cost? I'm guessing something like $29.95.

    Vegaslee, you're always focused on what things do for the Vegas economy, "bringing jobs," etc. Your points are valid, but this is the "Gaming" section, not the "Business" section. If somebody criticizes a casino or strip feature, they're doing so from the standpoint of its contribution, or lack thereof, to Vegas as a gaming destination in the context of the "Vegas experience." That's the focus of this forum, not local economics. I'm just saying....

    I can't help but wonder if anybody's concerned about this "Linq" pulling people away from the already-desperate strip scene, with 40+ restaurants, etc. The strip has a glut of restaurants like it is. Now millions of people will spend their time and money in this "entertainment district," instead of losing it in tight slots or high-minimum tables.

    It's also very likely that it will attract people that many on the strip would prefer to avoid. And yes, you can bet the grocery money that the porn-snappers will be swarming.

    This could end up being another fiasco on the scale of City Center, not to mention creating MORE construction and plywood walkways on the strip. What a mess.