by Michael J. Shapiro | February 01, 2011

Las Vegas
The 2,995-room Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas celebrated its grand opening last Dec. 15 with a hybrid event of sorts: Killers front man Brandon Flowers performed an opening-night concert that was simulcast on the 65-foot-tall LED-display marquee overlooking the Strip. The spacious guest rooms feature private terraces, and the property offers 150,000 square feet of meeting space, a 100,000-square-foot casino and the Sahra Spa & Hammam.

The Stratosphere Casino, Hotel & Tower, a 2,427-room resort on the Strip, completed a $20 million renovation last month. The project included the remodeling of 909 guest rooms, now known as Stratosphere Select. The deluxe rooms, on floors with upgraded elevator lobbies, are outfitted with new amenities and renovated bathrooms. Other enhancements include a new valet parking entrance on the Strip, several new lounges and an expanded Roxy's Diner.

The Las Vegas Convention Center has been designated a World Trade Center site, following an agreement signed in January by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and the Consumer Electronics Association, producers of the International CES event (which this year drew nearly 150,000 attendees). The deal gives both the LVCVA and CEA the opportunity to market under the World Trade Center brand, with the intention of bringing more international business to both the venue and the CES show. As part of the deal, the association has agreed to hold International CES at the Las Vegas Convention Center through 2015.

RavellaDolce Hotels & Resorts, which acquired the former Ritz-Carlton, Lake Las Vegas, after it was shuttered last spring, will reopen the property on Feb. 11 as the Ravella at Lake Las Vegas. Dolce has rebranded the 349-room resort to create a more contemporary atmosphere, including a lobby that has been redesigned as a high-energy social gathering spot. Named after Ravello, a coastal town in Southern Italy (and playing on the word revel), the resort has nearly 30,000 square feet of meeting space and customized catering for groups, as well as the Firenze Lobby Lounge and the Medici Café and Terrace restaurant. The property also is partnering with restaurants in The Village Lake Las Vegas to offer guests more dining options. The 30,000-square-foot Spa at Ravella includes 24 treatment rooms, a full-service salon and a fitness center.

MGM Resorts International launched M life early this year, a loyalty program that eventually will recognize customer spending on guest rooms, shopping, dining and gambling at any MGM property in the United States. While in its current form the program is an expansion of MGM's player's club, offering benefits to gamblers, by late summer the company expects to integrate recognition, tracking and rewards for other property amenities. Benefits include "M life moments," unique rewards such as selecting the songs for a day for The Fountains of Bellagio, a cameo role in Cirque du Soleil's Viva ELVIS show, a guest deejay slot in an MGM Grand club, cooking lessons with celebrity chef Rick Moonen at Mandalay Bay or a one-day gig as a dolphin trainer at Mirage.

Camouflage Mega SuiteThe 150-suite boutique resort Rumor opened last August, a major redesign of the former St. Tropez Hotel. The eclectically decorated property includes four oversized suites the hotelier claims define Las Vegas decadence; known as The Fantastic Four, each features outlandish design, custom-made furniture and touches such as a five-person rain shower. Rumor is across the street from the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. An on-site restaurant, Addiction, offers a 12-person private dining room.