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TI pirates sail away, but return in fall

Jul 8, 2003 6:18 AM

The pirates at Treasure Island fought their last battle on Sunday, but they’ll be back next fall as part of an updated "sensual interpretation" of the spectacular Battle of Buccaneer Bay.

The new version will still have pirates, but they will slug it out with a sexy cache of Sirens of TI, an ensemble of singing, dancing and altogether tempting swashbucklers.

The new show will be the centerpiece of Treasure Island’s evolution to a hip, upscale adult-oriented resort hotel. Shortening the hotel’s nickname to "TI" is also part of the master plan.

More evidence of the evolution takes place on Thursday night, when the hotel’s skull and cross swords marquee is brought down to make way for a new sign.

In addition, on Friday night several of the candidates for Sirens of TI will be introduced in ceremonies, which take place at Buccaneer Bay at 8 p.m.

The evolution will take about six months to complete, according to Treasure Island President Scott Sibella.

"We’ll celebrate our tenth anniversary with the new show," Sibella said, adding a target date of Oct. 26 has been set for launching the new battle.

Sibella promised the new pirate show will not be an X-rated, sleazy revue, but instead a high-line, Broadway-style show with expert lighting, dancing, music, and compelling entertainment.

"What we’re doing outside is keeping up with the type of entertainment we are now offering inside," Sibella said.

Sibella added that the evolution to a more adult-friendly resort has been ongoing for several years. It includes the addition of Kahunaville, a trendy supper club that features entertainment, audience interaction and flair bartenders, and Mist, the resort’s hip, new ultra-lounge.

Also noticeable inside the casino is new carpeting, modernized employee uniforms, upgraded guest rooms and the removable of the former 25,000-square-foot video arcade.

"In recent years we’ve created a number of experiences within TI that energize the property and give visitors reason to return again and again," Sibella said. "With the new pirates battle, we will create a show that leaves everyone wanting more and finding it within our resort."

There’s much more ahead, Sibella added. Next year, the TI will open a Mexican restaurant from renowned restaurateur Richard Sandoval, and Cantor’s Deli, an L.A. icon.

Also in 2004, a pedestrian bridge will connect Treasure Island with the evolving Fashion Show mall, which recently added Nordstrum and Bloomingdale’s Home Store to go along with its Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus and other upscale stores and boutiques.

The trend to more adult themes and less family-friendly attractions has been ongoing for the past two or three years, said Jenn Michaels, Treasure Island’s publicist.

"Parents who used to bring their kids were disappointed because, at the heart of it, Las Vegas was still an adult destination," Michaels told the Los Angeles Daily News. "So, definitely you’ve seen a return in recent years to people focusing on Las Vegas as an adult destination with nightlife and nightclubs and gambling."

Michaels added that "adult oriented" doesn’t mean "X-rated," as it does in some other circles. "There are lines you can no way cross," she said.