Sign Up for Our Daily Newsletter
Las Vegas has officially welcomed a new addition to its hotel scene: Virgin Hotels Las Vegas, which made its grand debut March 25.
Upon first inspection, it’s clear that what the new Virgin property does better than most is capture and embrace the spirit of the city itself. Sure, that approach is a signature of the brand and similar to what Virgin did when designing its boutique hotels in Chicago, Nashville, Dallas and San Francisco, but here in Las Vegas — a city known to replicate others — it feels like a fresh take.
With a modern and bright desert-inspired design, Virgin Hotels Las Vegas connects directly to its surroundings — both near and far. Artwork and murals feature scenes of cacti, Joshua trees and red rock mountains, while hallway carpeting and wall coverings are in the sunset shades of yellow and orange. On eatery Casa Calavera’s pool deck patio, guests can sip a margarita with their toes in the sand, or enjoy oysters, carpaccio and other Mediterranean favorites out in the open air at Todd English’s Olives.
“Virgin Hotels are very locally driven, and each is unique to its geographic location,” according to Richard Bosworth, CEO of JC Hospitality, the company running the resort. “It’s a journey through the desert. We try to emulate that throughout the entire property.”
Part of the Curio Collection by Hilton, Virgin Hotels Las Vegas is the newest diamond in the desert. The opening of the 1,500-room off-Strip casino-hotel (a renovation of the former Hard Rock Hotel and Casino) signals that the city is ready to take the next step toward recovery. While expectations for the property are high, it is opening at a time when casino capacity is still limited to 50% — a challenge not lost on Bosworth.
“I like to say we’re going to be categorized at the start as seven restaurants with a 1,500-room hotel attached to it,” said Bosworth, half-jokingly. “Our food will carry us until occupancy increases and entertainment returns.”
In addition to Olives, Casa Calavera and Hard Rock holdover Nobu, Virgin attracted Kris Yenbamroong’s popular Los Angeles Thai spot Night + Market to the property and struck a deal with Michael and David Morton for the brothers to open One Steakhouse, a ritzy space with a color-changing ceiling. Other on-site venues and amenities come by way of the Virgin Hotels brand, including signature restaurants and bars such as The Kitchen at Commons Club, Funny Library Coffee Shop and the plush Shag Room lounge with its Arabian-style cabanas.
Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment will run both the 60,000-square-foot casino and a private gaming salon on the 16th floor of one of the hotel towers. A smart gym, allowing guests to track their workouts on a mobile app, and a spa are also among the resort’s amenities.
When it comes to the rooms — or “chambers,” as they’re called here — they’re made for comfort and convenience. Smartphones act as your room key and everything, from ordering room service to adjusting air conditioning to closing the drapes, can be controlled right from an app on your phone.
Each chamber is outfitted with Virgin Hotels’ multifunctional “Lounge Bed,” which is crafted for working as much as sleeping. Ergonomically designed, the soft, padded headboard is pitched at a 120-degree angle so guests can recline and work comfortably with a laptop, while curved cubby holes at both ends of the headboard and a third at the foot of the bed give options to relax.
Virgin Hotels will open with no resort fees, free Wi-Fi access and complimentary self-parking. And those in-room minibar selections — from candy bars to cola — are priced the same as they’d be in the store.
“There is no nickel-and-dime policy here,” says Chad Brown, vice president of marketing for JC Hospitality. “We won’t surprise people with hidden fees.”
The DetailsVirgin Hotels Las Vegas www.virginhotelslv.com