Mirage Finally Joining Las Vegas Reopening Party, Taking Reservations for August 27
Posted on: August 14, 2020, 12:07h.
Last updated on: August 19, 2020, 08:08h.
Just in time for Labor Day weekend, the Mirage on the Las Vegas Strip will reopen for business on Thursday, Aug. 27.
MGM Resorts International, the operator of the iconic venue, confirmed the integrated resort is taking reservations for that data, positioning it to capitalize on Labor Day traffic. That holiday is on Monday, Sept. 7.
The operator didn’t say how many employees will return to work as a result of the Mirage restart. But gaming properties across the country are operating at reduced capacity following the coronavirus shut down, leading to lower staff counts.
As is the case with a slew of other gaming companies, MGM is having its bouts with headcount amid the industry’s “new normal.” Last month, the company said it’s canceling shows and concerts through at least Aug. 31, which could lead to a round of job losses.
Still, news that Mirage is coming back online is a positive for Nevada’s ailing economy. The Silver State had a jobless rate of 15 percent in June, one of the highest in the country, according to the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation (DETR).
Nevada gaming properties came back online on June 4 with Bellagio, MGM Grand, and New York-New York being the first MGM venues to join the fray. Excalibur followed a week later with Luxor and The Shoppes at Mandalay Bay reopening in late June.
ARIA reopened in early July. However, Mirage has been conspicuous by its absence, stoking speculation that MGM could be readying a sale of the famed venue. However, when MGM reported second-quarter results last month, Hornbuckle quashed that rumor, saying Mirage is “an amazing brand” and important to the company.
Last year, Mirage contributed $615.17 million in revenue, fourth-best among MGM’s Strip venues behind Bellagio, MGM Grand, and Mandalay Bay. That was an increase of almost $20 million from 2018.
Reducing Dubious Figure
The Mirage reopening reduces the figure of Las Vegas gaming properties that have yet to come back online. As of Aug. 13, that total stood at 12, including Mirage. Now, it’s down to 11.
That group of 11 includes Park MGM, as well as multiple Boyd Gaming venues in Downtown Las Vegas, several Caesars properties, and the Palms.
One of the primary issues confounding operators is occupancy rates, particularly on the weekdays. Over the course of gaming industry earnings season, executives are saying weekday occupancy rates labor around 30 percent, and increase to 50 percent on the weekends, both of which are well-off a normal operating environment’s averages.
Monday through Thursday occupancy is being dragged lower by significantly reduced corporate and convention traffic, with some operators saying things may not get back to normal on that front until 2022.