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A desert oasis beloved for its flamboyant glitz and glamour, Las Vegas is also known for tirelessly churning out shiny new hotels to wow its visitors. And the newest property to take the Las Vegas Strip’s fluorescent-lit stage is Park MGM, formerly the Monte Carlo Las Vegas Resort and Casino.
Having turned the ripe old age of 21 in June, Monte Carlo has long been a familiar sight on the Strip for Vegas loyalists. But as the Strip continued to evolve with fresh additions that could lead visitors astray, it was time for a major change for the property.
“In Vegas, it’s always about the next new thing,” said Amanda Voss, vice president of hotel sales at Park MGM and NoMad Hotel.
A collaboration by partners MGM Resorts International and Sydell Group, the upscale Park MGM is a big departure from its previous life as the Monte Carlo. The approximately $450 million transformation kicks off in the remodeled lobby, where guests check in via numerous self-service kiosks (though “lobby ambassadors” wearing white vests are swift to assist if needed).
The new design of the lobby utilizes existing structures while incorporating new elements of nature. Of note are giant, intertwined tree roots — made with reclaimed wood and created by Brazilian woodworker Henrique Oliveira — that seem to sprout from the center of the lobby’s ceiling. Near the registration desk, there’s also a multimedia art piece that overlays traditional paintings with projection videos, created by Iranian filmmaker-painter duo Shahram Karimi and Shoja Azari. Ornate crystal chandeliers, floral motifs and a color palette of soft, earthy greens and gold accents round out the stunning room. Guests may also notice the absence of the classic Vegas soundtrack (the loud spinning reels, beeps and ringing of slot machines); this is due to the hotel casino’s location away from the lobby and through a wide corridor.
Upstairs, Park MGM’s approximately 2,700 guestrooms have been modernized to achieve a chic, trendy feel — a welcome change from the outdated decorative carpets and cream couches and drapes of yesteryear. All renovated guestrooms are expected to be complete by the end of April
Inspired by the surrounding Nevada desert’s succulents and cacti blooms, accommodations showcase color-blocked walls of fire-engine red or forest-green that contrast against bright white. The overhead lighting features visible wiring climbing up the wall and onto the ceiling, and there are also brass lamps with switches near USB ports (an assortment of outlets is also built into the 50-inch television’s console).
Guests can relax in beds positioned within newly-built alcoves or kick back on stylish settees situated alongside oversize picture windows; my 406-square-foot Park King room presented a fabulous view of Sin City and The Park Vegas dining and shopping complex below. Bathrooms are spacious, well-lit and mostly white, other than shower tiles that match the room’s accent color of red or green. Additionally, a curated art program is found throughout the hotel in guestrooms and public spaces. For example, my room displayed a unique gallery wall of eclectic photographs, art prints and the like.
But Park MGM’s massive transformation doesn’t stop there. Already making a splash on Vegas’ dining scene are two new on-site food and beverage outlets: Bavette’s Steakhouse & Bar, open since October, and Primrose, open since September. Bavette’s Steakhouse & Bar is a joint venture with acclaimed restaurant group Hogsalt Hospitality, which, in its home base of Chicago, also operates the restaurant’s first and only other location; Primrose is original to Park MGM.
In Vegas, it's always about the next new thing.
Upon entering the dinner-only Bavette’s, which is accessible via an inconspicuous-looking wooden door off the hotel casino, I felt like I had been transported to a sultry social club set in 1920s Chicago. Adding to the dusky ambiance are vintage art pieces; large-scale murals by artist David Plunkert; abundant mirrors; dimly-lit chandeliers and antique lamps; velvet-tufted booths; and leather chairs. Besides the main dining area and two private rooms, there’s also a hidden speakeasy-style lounge in the back, where guests can indulge in a nightcap. I recommend the Astoria cocktail, expertly fashioned with Hendrick’s Gin, Lillet Rose and an orange twist.
And, like in the lobby, Bavette’s is free from the chimes of slot machines; instead, diners are met with the soothing melodies of smooth jazz and the low murmur of conversation over fantastic dishes. My partner and I ordered the smoked salmon Caesar salad with crispy potatoes; a 16-ounce Chicago cut of classic ribeye steak; Bavette’s spiced fried chicken with mashed potatoes, sweet pea and cipollini gravy; and fresh oysters sourced from both American coasts. The verdict? Everything was excellent, just like the outstanding service that was provided
Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Primrose is also a valuable culinary asset for Park MGM. Located via Park MGM’s lobby, the restaurant is inspired by the South of France, especially the locale’s picturesque country houses, gardens and terraces. A drawing room is located at the front of the restaurant, perfect for early risers looking to sip first-rate almond-milk lattes while reading the paper. Guests can also expect a ground-floor bar, a foyer and a main dining room, each boasting gorgeous art and decor. Additionally, an outside patio space features a grill and garden bar that faces French windows and a lovely, shaded ambiance inspired by the French Riviera.
In the pipeline for Park MGM are several exciting venues, including a Koreatown, Los Angeles-inspired eatery in partnership with chef Roy Choi; a roughly 40,000-square-foot Eataly, which will offer a marketplace, sit-down restaurants and to-go counters; and The NoMad Las Vegas, a 292-room ultra-luxury hotel within Park MGM. All three establishments are slated to open by fall/winter 2018.
- Overnight parking is $15 per day for guests. The parking key works up until midnight during the day of check-out, and it also works for all parking garages across MGM properties.
- A short walk away is outdoor dining and entertainment district The Park Vegas, which offers restaurants including Beerhaus, Shake Shack, Bruxie, California Pizza Kitchen and Sake Rok.
- The new Park Theater is also adjacent to Park MGM.
The DetailsPark MGMwww.parkmgm.com