November 17, 2004
MGM Mirage announced last week it will build a new megaresort, currently called Project CityCenter, on the Las Vegas Strip. Details have not been finalized, but company officials hint the multibillion-dollar project will include 550,000 square feet of dining, shopping and entertainment space, a 4,000-room hotel, a 1,650-unit condominium complex and three 400-room hotels. A 66-acre site has been chosen between the Bellagio and Monte Carlo hotel-casinos. Work is not expected to begin before 2006, or even 2007, with an expected opening in 2010.

The massive CONEXPO-CON/AGG construction and materials trade show, which takes place every three years, will be reorganized following the 2005 event in Las Vegas. Since 1999, the exposition has been co-owned and co-produced by the Association of Equipment Manufacturers and the International Concrete and Aggregates Group, but now AEM will own and run the show alone, with ICAG moving into a sponsorship role. "All parties involved look forward to successful shows in 2005 and beyond," said Charles Stamp, AEM chairman. The 2002 CONEXPO-CON/AGG was the largest trade show in the United States that year, drawing 108,000 attendees.

Last week, officials broke ground on a 359,000-square-foot expansion of the Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre. Tourism Vancouver and the governments of British Columbia and Canada will jointly fund the $473 million undertaking. The expansion is slated for completion in 2008, after which the waterfront facility will serve as media headquarters for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.  

The expected closing on a parcel of land on the Boston waterfront by the Pritzker family of Hyatt Hotels fame fell through last week, leaving the 21-acre Fan Pier property once again up for developmental grabs. Although some of the various projects planned for the parcel (as well as its $125 million price tag) might be reconsidered, representatives for the Boston Redevelopment Authority maintain that a proposed 500- to 650-room meeting hotel planned for the area remains "a sure thing." Whether the property will be a Hyatt, as was long expected, however, is uncertain. 

A major gaming resort is coming to the Catskill Mountains in upstate New York. Empire Resorts announced Monday the acquisition of two adjacent golf resorts, Concord and Grossinger's, which have been closed for years. Pending approvals, the sites will see development of a Native American casino and hotel, the second under development in the region by Empire Resorts. (A $500 million project by the Monticello Raceway is in the works as well.) "We are very excited that something will finally come to fruition," said Jacquie Leventoff, president and CEO of the chamber of commerce in Sullivan County, where the resorts will be built. A timeline for construction has not been set.

New York City's Madison Square Garden announced Nov. 11 a several-hundred-million-dollar renovation of the entire arena, to begin in 2006. The announcement comes one week after funding was approved for construction of the 75,000-seat New York Sports and Convention Center three blocks away. 


The London Euston Plaza Hotel, with 150 guest rooms and 11 meeting rooms, has been reflagged as the Hilton London Euston. Meanwhile, the Hilton Group put 11 properties in the United Kingdom up for sale yesterday. Among them is the 189-room Hilton Edinburgh Grosvenor in the Scottish capital.   

Hard Rock International and Sol Melia Hotels & Resorts announced Monday they will jointly manage Europe's first Hard Rock Hotel in what is now the 202-room Reina Victoria Hotel in Madrid, Spain. The existing hotel will be renovated before being renamed in fall 2005 as the Hard Rock Hotel Reina Victoria.