MGM Grand begins $160 million hotel renovation

PRNewsFoto/MGM Grand

The renovated Tower Spa Suite at MGM Grand. MGM Resorts International announced on Oct. 11, 2011, that it will embark on a $160 million remodel of MGM Grand’s main tower.

Hotel undergoes remodel

Hotel undergoes remodel

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KSNV coverage of the MGM Grand undergoing room renovations to keep up with the competition, Oct. 12, 2011.

Click to enlarge photo

The renovated Grand Queen Suite at the MGM Grand. MGM Resorts International announced Oct. 11 it will embark on a $160 million remodel of the MGM Grand's main tower.

Click to enlarge photo

The renovated Grand King Suite at the MGM Grand. MGM Resorts International announced Oct. 11 it will embark on a $160 million remodel of the MGM Grand's main tower.

MGM Resorts is embarking on a $160 million remodeling of its signature hotel, MGM Grand.

Company officials announced Tuesday that every hotel room in the main tower of MGM Grand will receive a makeover. That’s 3,570 guest rooms and 642 suites.

The resort operator also plans to overhaul the property’s casino floor, restaurants, clubs and showrooms in the coming months, in a project the company has named “the grand renovation.” Executives remained tighter-lipped about the details and cost of that wider upgrade.

Tim Kelly, vice president of hotel operations, said the first batch of rooms should be finished by mid-November. About 700 rooms will be under construction at any given time, and work will be limited to daytime weekday hours to minimize disturbance to guests. Construction on each section of rooms is expected to last six weeks, and the entire hotel renovation is scheduled for completion in September 2012. Work started Monday.

MGM Grand opened in 1993 at a cost of $1 billion and received its last major remodel in 1999. Kelly said company officials felt the property needed a face-lift to keep it current and competitive with other Strip resorts.

“We always want to enhance the guest experience,” he said. “We felt it was necessary to refresh our room product not only for look and feel but also for functionality and from a technology perspective. There are basics customers expect when they come to Las Vegas.”

For the first time, the hotel’s rooms will feature mini bars and media hubs. Each will be equipped with a flat screen TV and environmentally-friendly accessories, including LED lighting, solar shades and biodegradable bath amenities. New systems to improve door locks, Internet access and movie downloads will also be installed in the main tower.

MGM is the latest in a string of resorts to undertake a major rehab. Because of the sour economy, casino operators are increasingly turning away from new megaresort projects and looking instead to cheaper, more manageable renovations.

This year alone, Steve Wynn spent $99 million to upgrade the Wynn Las Vegas’ 2,700 hotel rooms and suites (only five years after the property opened), the Stratosphere embarked on a $20 million hotel and casino renovation, and the Bellagio underwent a $70 million face-lift. In additon, the Plaza downtown reopened in August after a $35 million overhaul, and the Tropicana last year received a $180 million transformation.

Resorts fight for customers from the same pool of visitors and recognize that having the newest rooms can set them apart. “Our goal is to make enhancements to ensure we’re competitive in this city and worldwide,” Kelly said.

MGM Grand plans to erect a model of one of the renovated rooms in its main lobby later this month. The last resort to use such a marketing tool was the Rio when it opened in 1989, Kelly said.

“It will be an opportunity for guests coming to the property to view what we’re offering,” Kelly said. “With all our entertainment, events and experiences, we drive a lot of customers from other properties.”



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Discussion 9 comments

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  1. Business will not be coming back to pre 2009 anytime soon. Nobody says that I'm going to Las Vegas because of the beautiful rooms. How long do u stay in your room? Hello. Concentrate on reasonable restaurants, good entertainment(Not the same Manilow, Elton John, Osmonds ETC) and gambling where there is a REAL CHANCE of winning. Never happen.

  2. M G M needs to do this to all the propertys , Caesars also, Money is tough for the caesar now days ,with 22.6 billion in debt,Way to much invetory in rooms. this will not happen untill Lovechecks takes the Caesars Brand into BK or chapter 11. Caesars does not have the money to build the Ling Ling,or finnish the last tower on property,the rooms will be the last thing to get a makeover. The M G M you see the light, good luck

  3. Herman Cain is available for consulting. He seems to understand business better then the execs.

  4. Front desk clerks are apologizing for the state of the rooms and telling guests that renovations are coming. It should never have gotten that far. Shows you that MGM is in big trouble.

  5. "its last major remodel in 1999." I was taken aback by that. They pours tons of money into new developments like CityCenter yet have not remodeled the MGM Grand since 99?!

    During my last Vegas visit I recall think that casino looked very dated. Now I see why. What a foolish mistake to blow money on a CityCenter where they can't fill all the rooms and not fix the properties they already own.

    If, as stated anove, the front desk clerks are apologizing for the condition of the rooms... someone was very alseep at the wheel at MGM.

  6. I hope that plans have already been made to do something with the items that are being phased out (furniture, linens, fixtures, etc) other than a heaping trip to the landfill. There are many organizations which would gladly accept these items for reuse in other capacities. MGM has an opportunity here to set an example of social and environmental responsibility.

  7. MGM did wait to long to refurnish/rehabilitate their rooms.They did the same thing with Bellagio-which is an absolute jewel of a property -and they let the old girl fall into disrepair before finally embarking a refurnishing project that they say will be done this December.
    One of the problems with remodeling the rooms of an aging hotel like the Grand or the Tropicana is that it's an old shell.You can change carpet,curtains bedding,paint and pictures, but if you can hear conversation,fights and bowel movements from the room next door because of thin walls I'm still not staying there,even with the upgrades.

  8. Thanks for the interest, and taking the time to comment.

    MGM is investing in its properties on an ongoing basis to ensure a high quality guest experience. This year, 2011, MGM is investing $275M in room remodeling at its properties and will do it in an environmentally responsible way as outlined in our Envirnmental Responsibility report;

  9. Yep Vegas overbuilt with City Center. It was already being overbuilt with the advent of the mega resorts. People want more of what they come here for and its not for the rooms. Idoits are running the asylum now. And the so called celeberty chefs are not only overpriced but they are BOGUS! When you come to Vegas now, what is there? You want to brag you had a 20 dollar hamburger?