Posted on: February 11, 2021, 02:00h.
Last updated on: February 11, 2021, 09:46h.
Virgin Hotels Las Vegas has once again set an opening date for the off-Strip property. It is March 25 if all goes as planned.
Richard Bosworth, president and CEO of JC Hospitality, seen here. The firm owns the forthcoming Virgin Hotels Las Vegas. The resort casino is scheduled to open next month. (Image: Las Vegas Review-Journal)Two previously scheduled openings for the former Hard Rock Hotel and Casino were postponed mostly due to coronavirus-related concerns.The most-recent delayed opening was supposed to take place on Jan. 15, 2021. Earlier, the opening date was planned for last November.Starting last February, the Hard Rock shuttered while $200 million worth of renovations took place to make way for the rebranded property.“It has been a journey, but to finally reach this milestone and confidently announce our opening date would not be possible without our incredible partners and construction team,” Richard Bosworth, president and CEO of JC Hospitality, which owns the property, said in a statement.Many Amenities in New HotelWhen renovations are complete, there will be three hotel towers with 1,504 rooms.During the renovation, each of the hotel rooms was upgraded. The property will also feature 323 refurbished executive suites.Each of the executive suites measures between 700 and 750 square feet. The upgraded 79 luxury suites measure between 900 and 5,000 square feet.Among the property’s amenities is a 4,500-seat theater and a 650-seat showroom. When the property was part of the Hard Rock, the theater was known as The Joint.Also, Mohegan Gaming and Entertainment will operate the property’s 60,000-square-foot casino.To run the hotel and casino, the property is planning to reassign some 300 unionized workers who were once employed by the Hard Rock, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.“We are not only celebrating the fact that we finally get to welcome back guests to the most exciting resort to open in Las Vegas in years, but we also get to bring our team members back to work,” Bosworth said.The Hard Rock was sold to Bosworth in 2018. He partnered with Juniper Capital Partners and billionaire Richard Branson — associated with the Virgin Group conglomerate — to purchase the hotel-casino in a $500 million deal.The casino and hotel originally planned to remain partially open during the transformation. But developers later realized it was not a feasible option and it would have delayed renovations.But delays came anyway. Last year, Bosworth explained in a statement the delays were necessary.“While the entire team at JC Hospitality is beyond excited to introduce the reimagined resort casino to locals and tourists alike, the safety and health of our guests, partners, and team members continues to be our top priority,” he said.Las Vegas Tourism, Conventions Plummeted in 2020The pandemic hit Las Vegas’ tourism and convention business hard. The 19.03 million people who visited Las Vegas in 2020 was off by 55.2 percent from the previous year, the Review-Journal said. It also was the lowest number since 1989.Overall, in 2020, the number of passengers using McCarran International Airport fell by 56.9 percent, compared to 2019. Last year, about 22 million travelers used the airport. In 2019, the passenger total was over 51 million.Also, Las Vegas Strip casinos reported gross gaming revenue of $3.73 billion in 2020, their lowest haul since 1999.