First Look: Resorts World Las Vegas offers a massive but welcoming experience


LAS VEGAS -- The sheer size of Resorts World Las Vegas is what hits you as you approach the new 88-acre complex, which opened on the Strip on June 24.

Within its sleek red towers are 3,500 guestrooms and suites spread across three Hilton brands, 40 food and beverage options, a 117,000-square-foot casino, a quarter-million square feet of meetings and banquet space, a 27,000-square-foot spa and the 5,000-seat RW Theatre.

Yet, as you make your way through the place, the size becomes less overwhelming. It's opulent yet approachable, sprawling but divided into more intimately scaled areas.

Resorts World has a city-within-a-city approach, with broad neighborhoods and districts offering an array of dining, shopping and entertainment experiences. Executives on a recent media preview tour repeatedly emphasized that they are instilling a welcoming culture and authentic customer service that reflects the Asian roots of the Genting Group, which constructed the $4.3 billion complex.

An understated, contemporary elegance connects the many different areas into a cohesive vision, the leader of the resort's design team said.

The living room area of a suite at the Las Vegas Hilton at Resorts World.
The living room area of a suite at the Las Vegas Hilton at Resorts World. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Resorts World

"It's fresh, it's approachable, it's modern. It has some handsome elements to it, bold architecture, grand motions instead of little details and little trims," said Kara Siffermann, vice president of design, who selected a variety of eclectic art to bring whimsy where you least expect it.

The casino is the first in Nevada to offer digital login and cashless wagering at both slots and table games. Cash can be deposited at a kiosk, a player services desk or via an app. Guests then never have to touch cash again throughout the casino. In addition to offering a traditional loyalty card, there is a digital loyalty card. Or players may enter their phone number at any slot machine to earn points for rewards.

Such technology is at the heart of Resorts World Las Vegas. An app enables guests to skip the face-to-face greeting experience at check-in and go directly to their rooms using keyless entry. And On the Fly at Resorts World uses Grubhub technology to enable guests to have food and drinks from any of the on-site restaurants delivered anywhere in the resort.

The Cabana Pool is part of the 5.5-acre outdoor complex.
The Cabana Pool is part of the 5.5-acre outdoor complex. Photo Credit: Megan Blair

A 5.5-acre pool complex on the fifth floor features five unique areas and nine pools. The graceful form of a bamboo leaf inspired the shape of the Main Pool, while a C-shaped pool with an island recalls water temples in Southeast Asia. 

Landscaping around the pools includes 100 trees from the iconic Stardust hotel-casino, which previously occupied the site.

While the theater and dayclub/nightclub club areas will not open until later this year, almost all of the dining choices are expected to be ready on Day 1.

Among them is the 24,000-square-foot Famous Foods Street Eats, a hall calling to mind an Asian hawker market with floor-to-ceiling windows and 16 stalls from top chefs and restaurateurs offering cuisines from around the world. These offer value-priced menus and an excellent way for guests to be introduced to new flavors and dishes.

Eclectic, playful art can be found throughout the complex: a dog and rabbit kissing on a hippo, sculptures of doughnuts, a Louis Vuitton doberman made of crayons, "Sunny" the egg mascot in front of the Sun's Out Buns Out eatery, a VW Bug rolled into a ball.

"Everything's selected based on what's new and fresh and different." Siffermann said. Augmenting the art during the resort's opening are a dozen colorful Bespoke Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, including two Rolls-Royce Phantoms in the signature "Resorts World Red."

The 50-foot-tall, 20-million-pixel Digital Sphere in the District, the resort's ambitious, two-level retail and restaurant area, is sure to be a favorite for selfies. 

The attraction is designed to "reflect the excitement that's going on in Las Vegas and in this particular fabulous building," said Paul Steelman, the resort's architect. 


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