MGM Mirage Opens Aria

Late Wednesday night MGM Mirage opened Aria, the flagship casino-hotel of $8.5 billion 578 acre CityCenter development.   MGM and partner Dubai World are betting that the CityCenter will bring in visitors to pay for the modern state of the art rooms, and extras like meals at celebrity-chef restaurants, shopping sprees at Tiffany and Gucci, and spa services. 

However, the 6,000 new high end hotel rooms added by the CityCenter project comes during a glut of hotels on the Las Vegas strip.  Casino operators are lowering hotel room prices and offering special discounts to attract customers during a weak economy.  City Center president and CEO, Bobby Baldwin, said he doesn’t mind opening the huge property during a recession because it will give them time to work out inevitable kinks in operations.  Aria has 4004 hotel rooms, over 150,000 square feet of casino space, 10 bars and night clubs, 16 restaurants, and a new Cirque du Soleil show called “Viva Elvis”

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