Las Vegas Strip's $8.5 billion CityCenter begins to open

Dec 8, 2009 5:07 PM


Public gets first glimpse of $8.5 billion ‘urban marvel’ on the Las Vegas Strip


Just like its Five Star restaurants, CityCenter on the Las Vegas Strip is opening in small, tasty portions, with the main course set for a glorious presentation next week.

Since Dec. 1, three of the four key CityCenter elements have opened to the public. Its first property, the all-suite Vdara Hotel & Spa, opened with a grand-opening gala that was co-hosted by Vanity Fair and attended by celebrity guests Orlando Bloom and Rosario Dawson. It has 1,495 suites; an 18,000-square-foot, two-level spa, salon and advanced fitness facility; and over 10,000 square feet of meeting space.

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"We are incredibly proud to offer the world this first taste of all that CityCenter will bring to the Las Vegas Strip," MGM MIRAGE (MGM) Chairman and CEO Jim Murren told the press during Vdara’s opening-day events. "Travelers will finally find in Las Vegas what they find in other great cities around the world – spectacular architecture, culturally significant art, great public spaces, sophisticated hotels, unique restaurants and incredible amenities. We look forward to unveiling all of this and more as the month unfolds."

Vdara was followed on Dec. 3 by Crystals, the urban-like, 500,000-square-foot retail and entertainment complex, which features five restaurants – including Mastro’s, a new pub concept by Todd English, two concepts from Wolfgang Puck and Eva Longoria Parker’s Beso – and a potpourri of high-end retailers, including Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Prada, Christian Dior, Bulgari, Van Cleef & Arpels, Tiffany & Co., Mikimoto and Ermenegildo Zegna, among others.

CityCenter’s third offering, the new Mandarin Oriental, opened last Friday with 392 guest rooms and suites, 227 private residences, a 27,000-square-foot spa and 12,000 square feet of meeting space.

CityCenter’s last major opening is the centerpiece of the entire $85 billion development, ARIA Resort & Casino, which will be unveiled next Wednesday. It will be the most spectacular hotel and feature the most technologically-advanced casino in the world.