Travel Weeklys Las Vegas E-letter: Dec. 14, 2004

STOCKHOLDERS FORMANDALAY RESORT GROUP meeting in Las Vegas Friday approved an agreement that would merge the casino firm, which operates several resorts including the Luxor and the Excalibur, with MGM Mirage. Mandalay noted that the deal still has to clear government regulatory review. As a result, it cautioned, there can be no assurance as to when or if the merger will be consummated. In July, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requested additional information from MGM Mirage regarding the proposed merger. It was the second time that the FTC had asked for additional information. Nevertheless, MGM Mirage indicated it is confident that transaction will be completed in the first quarter of 2005. Under the merger deal, MGM Mirage would acquire the Mandalay Resort Group for $7.9 billion, including the assumption of $2.5 billion in outstanding debt. In Las Vegas, Mandalay Resort Group owns and operates the Mandalay Bay, Luxor, Excalibur, Circus Circus and Slots-A-Fun and owns a 50% interest in and operates the Monte Carlo. MGM Mirage, meanwhile, owns the Bellagio, Boardwalk Hotel & Casino, MGM Grand Las Vegas, the Mirage, the New York-New York and Treasure Island in Las Vegas.

 

IN OTHER NEWS, Las Vegas is gearing up for New Years Eve, its biggest party of the year, with several events around the city. Heres a sampling:


" MARIAH CAREY will help ring in 2005 and celebrate the opening of Pure Nightclub, adjacent to the Caesars race and sports book inside Caesars Palace. Owned in part by Celine Dion, Shaquille ONeal, Andre Agassi, Steffi Graf and Pure Management Group, the 36,000-square-foot venue features three different nightclub areas, each with its own DJ and sound system, as well as a VIP Red Room. The clubs 14,000-square-foot outdoor deck offers views of the Strip and, on Dec. 31, the citys annual fireworks display.


" BACHMAN TURNER OVERDRIVE and Morris Day and the Time will headline festivities at the Fremont Street Experience downtown, which will also include various opening acts, party favors and a special Viva Vision light and sound show. Gates open at 5 p.m., and tickets are $35 per person. For more details or to purchase tickets, call (702) 678-5600.

" KRAVE NIGHTCLUB, located at the corner of Las Vegas Boulevard and Harmon Avenue at the Desert Passage Mall, will open at 10:30 p.m. on Dec. 31 for dance music with DJ Kimberly S., a Midnight Countdown Explosion, a $5,000 balloon drop, champagne toasts and a breakfast buffet. The cover charge is $50 if reserved by Dec. 27 and $65 after that. The price includes a wristband for an after-hours party at the club featuring DJ Michael Lee. Those without a wristband will pay $10 for members or $20 general admission. For those who want to start the party early, the Fashionistas dance revue will perform at 8:30 p.m. General admission is $50, while a VIP ticket is $65. Seatings for New Years Eve dinner at the adjacent E.A.T. Restaurant are at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. The cost is $50 if reserved before Dec. 27 and $60 afterward. The party continues Jan. 1 at the nightclub with DJ Talla. Admission and one drink are free with a Krave New Years eve ticket stub. For more information or ticket reservations, phone (702) 836-0830 or visit www.kravelasvegas.com or www.jeffreysanker.com.

" AT THE STRATOSPHERE CASINO HOTEL AND TOWER, the Top of the World Restaurant offers two New Years Eve dinner seatings: the first from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. and the second from 9 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. The price of the first seating is $125 per person for a four-course prix fixe menu and glass of sparkling wine. First seating guests also may purchase an entrance ticket to the Top of the World Lounge party for $75 per person. The price for the second seating is $300 per person, which includes a five-course prix fixe menu, live entertainment, views of the citys fireworks display from the 1,149-foot-high tower, access to the Top of the World Lounge, unlimited rides from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m., party favors, and a midnight champagne toast and balloon drop. Other New Years Eve party venues at the property include the Twilight Room, the indoor observation deck, the pool deck, the Crazy Armadillo, Images Cabaret and the Oasis bar. The Stratosphere Tower will close to the public at 2 p.m. on Dec. 31; tower and ride tickets will be sold until 1:30 p.m. The Tower Shops retail mall will close at 6 p.m., while the Courtyard Buffet will close at 4 p.m. It will re-open on Jan. 1 for a New Years Day brunch. Free party favors will be available throughout the hotel and casino until midnight while supplies last, and the casino will host a free champagne toast at midnight. For more party information or tickets, call (702) 380-7711 or (800) 99-TOWER, Ext. 7711.

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