by Michael J. Shapiro | December 17, 2015

Aria Resort & Casino, the 4,004-room centerpiece property of CityCenter in Las Vegas, will expand its convention center facilities. The $154 million project will add 200,000 square feet of flexible meeting space across four stories of the LEED Gold-certified venue. The addition, which will replace the venue currently occupied by Cirque du Soleil's "Zarkana," will offer indoor-outdoor open-air spaces, as well as a glass-enclosed venue that will have views of The Park and the Las Vegas Arena, two MGM Resorts projects scheduled to open in April 2016.

Construction of the expansion should kick off in May 2016, following the closing of "Zarkana" on April 30. The new space is scheduled to open in February 2018.

"Convention business at Aria is booming," said Bobby Baldwin, the hotel's president and COO, "and demand is currently exceeding the space we have available. Hosting large meetings and conventions is a core part of our business; as our clients' needs grow, we are committed to grow with them."

The first level of the expansion will be home to a ballroom and prefunction space, and will offer a loading dock. The second level will feature indoor-outdoor breakout rooms, and the third will provide a large ballroom and naturally lit prefunction space that connect to Aria's existing convention center. On the top floor will be the venue's signature ballroom, with a vast outdoor patio that will accommodate receptions of up to 2,000 people. 

The new space will adhere to MGM Resorts International's commitment to build all new venues to LEED Gold status or better. Aria's environmentally sustainable practices have earned the resort five keys from Green Key Global's Eco-Rating Program.