Fan Challenge – Finding the Positive – S2E67

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Join Jamey and John as they take up the challenge of one of the shows fans, and find the positive influences of the Venetian Resort and beyond.  Included are talks of architecture, historical significance, art form, jobs creation and parking.  Also included on the show is a discussion of concierge travelling with their VIP guests. #crankyjohn

 

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Vegas Gossip

Following suit with Caesars Entertainment, Culinary Union members from MGM Resorts International properties have voted overwhelmingly to ratify a new five-year labor pact. There are now approximately 14,000 union members from other properties still working without a contract, though there are still no signs of walkouts.

In an interview with the LV Review-Journal, Wolfgang Puck indicated that he’s trying to negotiate a parking-fee discount for locals who eat at the new Spago at Bellagio.

Smith & Wollensky has announced that it’s reopening in a two-story “female-friendly” space that formerly housed Zeffirino’s at the Grand Canal Shoppes at the Venetian. Construction is expected to begin sometime in the fall, with an opening date next spring.

If you haven’t experienced Rehab at the Hard Rock, this summer will be your last opportunity. After 15 years, the pool club that started the whole Dayclub phenomenon will close after this season as part of the rebranding to Virgin.

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The Weapon of Choice for the AI revolt…Slot Machines! S2E66

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Jamey, Julia & John discuss the negative effects of slot machines on the human brain and the “Machine Zone.”  Also on the show…How hard is it to stay healthy in a town like Las Vegas? and Is there a marked difference in respect and tipping between male and female concierge?

Curated content and comedic viewpoints on Society, Politics, Entertainment & Las Vegas!

 

Vegas Gossip

The LV Review-Journal reports that multiple trademark applications have been filed by the Las Vegas 51s minor league baseball team for the name Las Vegas Aviators. While the filings seem to suggest that Aviators will be the new name, team representatives say that it’s a preemptive move to prevent cybersquatting and that several names are still in the running.

There’ve been no official announcements regarding overall participation in this year’s World Series of Poker, but judging from the two big lead-off tournaments, its down significantly. The $565 buy-in Colossus drew 13,070 players. That’s big, but a whopping 28% off last year’s 18,054. And while the drop wasn’t as dramatic in the $1,500 buy-in Millionaire Maker, its 7,361 participants was down 5% from last year’s 7,761.

Derek Stevens has purchased an 11-story office building across the street from the D for $39.7 million. Plans for the property haven’t been disclosed, but the building also has its own parking garage.

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Is Las Vegas Too Trendy for It’s Own Good? – S2E65

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Jamey and John discuss if Las Vegas has forgotten it’s locals within the new marketing campaigns.  Also on the show, has Vegas gotten too trendy…plus listener questions.

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Vegas Gossip

MSNBC.com has identified the most iconic foods in all 50 states. Nevada’s is the Shrimp cocktail: “The Golden Gate Hotel-Casino in downtown Las Vegas introduced it to the gaming public in 1959 and it quickly became a lure to entice folks to visit casinos. And it still does today. Served in a tulip-shaped glass and nestled on a bed of lettuce with spicy cocktail sauce, it’s a classic.

A woman from Wisconsin hit for $1.5 million playing a Million Degrees slot at the Golden Gate. It’s the largest jackpot ever at the casino.

Are you ready for another casino fee? You can buy a pass for $10 to skip the line at the Cosmopolitan’s Wicked Spoon Buffet. Caesars’ Bacchanal Buffet has a $25 skip fee. A better strategy might be to go when it’s not busy.

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Brothels, Churches and Walmarts…Which ones might leave Nevada? – S2E64

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Join Jamey, John and Julia for discussions of why millennials think Vegas is depressing, why brothels may be on their way out and a little bit of what it is like to be a casino host.

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Vegas Gossip

The Rio has quietly discontinued its Seafood Dinner Buffet after years of being the only one of its kind.

Marijuana sales set a record in March, raking in $41 million, the most since it was legalized last July. A little more than $7 million of the total for the month went to taxes. For the nine months since legalization, sales have totaled $385.99 million, with tax revenues of nearly $50 million. Bud accounts for 50% of sales, concentrates 25%, edibles 13%, pre-rolled joints 10%, and the rest “other.”

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7 Las Vegas Superstitions…Happy 113th Birthday Vegas! – S2E63

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Jamey and John celebrate the 113th Birthday of the City of Neon…Plus a look at some interesting superstitions, their origins and scientific relevance.

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Vegas Gossip

The Culinary and Bartenders Unions have voted overwhelmingly in favor of sanctioning a walkout if new five-year labor contracts aren’t in place by June 1. About half of the 50,000 eligible workers participated, with 99% voting “Yes” to approve a strike. It’s not a certainty that a strike will be called even if contracts aren’t in place during the deadline, but if it is it would affect as many as 34 resorts on the Strip and downtown, causing a significant disruption in operations.

The Las Vegas Walk of Stars project, which honors Las Vegas entertainment personalities with stars embedded in Strip walkways similar to the sidewalk stars in Hollywood is getting a new home. After more than half of the stars were taken out during Strip construction, a deal was made to move them to the Linq Promenade. The stars will reside in an area near the High Roller wheel.

After dominating in the boxing ring, the prospects are reversed for Floyd Mayweather if he wants to take on Connor McGregor in the octagon. The Westgate opened with McGregor a -1000 favorite over Mayweather should the two meet in an fight with MMA rules. You can get +650 on Mayweather. The fight is only speculation at the moment and bets will be returned if it doesn’t take place by September 2019.

The first serve-yourself cocktail kiosk on the Strip has closed after less than a year in operation. The Hop kiosk was located among the restaurants shops at the Harmon Corner and offered beer and wine dispensed directly to customers.

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Mysteries of the Las Vegas Clefs d’or…and other fan questions! – S2E62

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Jamey and John discuss the realities of Las Vegas concierge and the mystery of Le Clefs d’or.  Also on this episode are talks of the sluggish Q1 and Q2 as reported by MGM and Caesar’s and what changes are causing this down turn.

Vegas Gossip

According to Jeremy Aguero, Las Vegas’ top economic analyst, Nevada’s population growth was nearly three times the national average and Las Vegas’ was the second fastest in all 50 states in the past year. Aguero estimates that an average of just under five people every hour have moved to Las Vegas in the previous 12 months, of whom 34% are from California. The Las Vegas metropolitan area has a population of nearly 2.3 million.

The Supreme Court of the United States has ruled that the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA) is unconstitutional. The 6-3 ruling opens the door for the legalization of sports betting in all 50 states.

According to the Case Shiller Home Price Index and the latest Fitch Ratings, Las Vegas is the most overvalued housing market nationwide. Home prices are 21.30% above fair market value and increasing at nearly twice the countrywide rate (11%). Las Vegas has plenty of company; of the 400 markets Fitch rates, 72 (17%) areas overvalued, with housing prices more than 10% above what income, population, and rent growth indicate they should be.

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Rage Rooms & Ghost Towns – Hidden Vegas – S2E61

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Join Jamey and John this week as they discuss the hidden and unique treasures of Las Vegas…including Ghost Towns, Fine Art Exhibits & Rage Rooms.

Vegas Gossip

Yesterday was the first 100-degree day of the year, with the temperature topping out at an even 100. It’s a bit early, as the average first day to hit triple digits is May 24, but last year’s first 100 degrees was May 5, with 85 more to follow.

The transition from Monte Carlo to Park MGM is official. Press releases were sent out today announcing the change in identity for the 22-year old 3,000-room resort, including new signage on the building. Work is ongoing, however, on the $550 million upgrade and rebranding that includes a 292-room hotel-within-a-hotel. NoMad Hotel Las Vegas and two more high-end restaurants are scheduled to open later this year.

A new system that monitors machine-play on the casino floor to determine drink comps is being tested in Laughlin. Similar systems are already in place at some casino bars, but this would expand the monitoring to all machines. No firm plans to bring the new system to Las Vegas have been announced, but it seems only a matter of time.

Megabucks was hit last weekend at Paris for $11.2 million by a gambler who did not want to be identified. The last Megabucks jackpot was hit in September at Fiesta Henderson.

 

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Las Vegas – City of Happy Endings…or Not – S2E60

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Jamey is joined by Deidra, a massage therapist in Las Vegas.  Their discussions include what it is like to work the floor of a casino and which players do and do not like massage…plus massage horror stories, the myth of the happy ending…and the Amish…seriously, the Amish.

Vegas Gossip

Mariah Carey is returning to Las Vegas and the Colosseum at Caesars Palace. “The Butterfly Returns” residency will run from July 5 through September.

An agreement has been made to allow online poker players in Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware can to play against each other in an attempt to boost liquidity. A sharing agreement has been in place between Nevada and Delaware since 2015, but the addition of the much bigger market in New Jersey should have a more significant impact, especially for the two smaller markets.

Barry Manilow has signed on for a residency at Westgate Las Vegas, returning to the venue at which he starred (when it was the LV Hilton) from 2005 to 2010. He’ll play from one to four weekends per month, with the first batch of dates landing on the lighter side of that schedule.

CityCenter Holdings LLC, owned jointly by MGM Resorts International and Infinity World Development Corp., has sold the Mandarin Oriental to an undisclosed buyer for $214 million. The sale of the 392-room non-gambling resort is expected to close this summer.

 

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Riding Elephants in Las Vegas – S2E59

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Jamey is joined by Carla M. as they recount more stories of being a talent agent in Las Vegas.  Also discussed are some of the differences between Vegas and the smaller gambling markets and will Vegas continue to support the private entertainment industry.

Vegas Gossip

Uncertainty about the prospects for Wynn Resorts’ previously announced Las Vegas projects was heightened when new CEO Matt Maddox announced that the scope of Paradise Park would be scaled back at a minimum. Calling plans to spend $3 billion to develop both Paradise Park and the Alon-site project “unsustainable,” Maddox indicated that the PP lagoon would be restricted to hotel guests only and that a hotel would be built either next to the lagoon or on the Alon site, but apparently not both.

The new edition of Hiking Las Vegas is in-house and ready to ship, just in time for the prime Las Vegas outdoor season. For years the go-to Las Vegas-area hiking guide, HLV covers more than 80 trails, varying in difficulty from relaxing family-friendly hikes to challenging climbs and scrambles, at Red Rock Canyon, Mt. Charleston, and Lake Mead. Changes were made in the design to make it easier to carry and use than earlier editions.

The Orleans is experimenting with virtual-reality tournaments. Enter a tourney for ArcheryVR as a single player ($10 entry) or SiegeVR as a team of two ($30). ArcheryVR has a $125 free-play prize and SiegeVR awards $300 FP. Playing sessions are 90 seconds and the tourneys run 4-10 p.m. weekdays and 2-10 p.m. weekends during a three-month trial. A similar program is running at MGM Grand.

 

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Is Vegas Dying?…and other Fan questions – S2E58

 

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Jamey and John answer Fan Questions and discuss listener show comments.  Topics include Las Vegas architecture, photography, weird concierge requests and sports-book fears.

Vegas Gossip

The Burlesque Hall of Fame opens today in its new location at 1027 S. Main Street. Admission to the museum is $15 and $12 for locals.

According to a survey by Forbes, Las Vegas is the sixth most affordable city in the U.S. The salary needed to live comfortably in Las Vegas came in at $56,609, with the “cost of necessities” listed at $28,304 per year and median income at $50,822. Tucson, Arizona, ranked at number five and El Paso, Texas, placed in the number-one spot on the list with the cost of necessities at $25,075, median income $43,322, and salary $50,150.

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