The Mirage in Las Vegas Goes Dark Midweek During COVID-19 Slowdown

Posted on: December 21, 2020, 04:09h. 

Last updated on: December 21, 2020, 05:21h.

The Mirage Hotel and Casino on the Las Vegas Strip is closing its entire property in the middle of the week because of low consumer demand during the coronavirus pandemic.

Mirage Hotel and Casino
The volcano at the Mirage hotel-casino on the Las Vegas Strip lights the sky in this nighttime photograph. The Mirage is closing midweek because of low consumer demand. (Image: Las Vegas Weekly)

On its website, the Mirage announced it is only accepting weekend reservations. Everything else at the resort, including the hotel towers, gaming areas, and restaurants, will be closed from Mondays through Wednesdays, the website states. The midweek closure even includes the volcano in front of the resort.

In a tweet on Monday, the Mirage announced the new hours would begin Jan. 4. The property will be open from noon on Thursdays until noon on Mondays, according to the tweet.

The Mirage, now an MGM Resorts property, was opened by casino executive Steve Wynn in 1989 on the west side of the Las Vegas Strip. On its website, it bills itself as “the original” Las Vegas megaresort.

The closure resulted from low weekday business levels and restrictions on group gatherings, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. These issues were brought about by the pandemic.

In a statement, the company said it does not expect the closure to continue beyond February, but will continue evaluating how long the closure might last.

There was no indication on what the impact could be regarding the workforce.

Resort Closures

Last month, MGM Resorts announced that the Mirage and another of its properties on the Strip, Mandalay Bay, would close their hotel towers during the slow midweek days. These closures began Nov. 30.

The announcement Monday regarding the Mirage includes a complete midweek closure, not just the hotel rooms.

The Mandalay Bay website states its hotel rooms are closed Mondays through Wednesdays, but does not say its casino is closed.

Mandalay Bay was expected to reopen on a regular schedule after December, though the company stated earlier it would continue evaluating business levels.

Park MGM, another MGM Resorts property on the Strip, also announced last month it is accepting hotel room guests only on weekends. Park MGM is on the west side of the Strip near T-Mobile Arena, where the National Hockey League’s Vegas Golden Knights play their home games.

Other resorts on the Strip are accepting room reservations only on weekends, including Planet Hollywood on the east side of the resort corridor.

Also on the east side of the Strip, Encore at Wynn Las Vegas, a Wynn Resorts hotel-casino, has closed its casino and hotel on Tuesdays and Wednesdays because of low consumer demand.

Palazzo at the Venetian Resort has closed its hotel rooms every day of the week until further notice, also because of low demand. It is on the east side of the Strip.

The off-Strip Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino is set to reopen on Tuesday after being closed when COVID-19 cases began to spike in March. After the first of the year, it will only accept weekend hotel reservations.

Airport Traffic in Decline

These occupancy woes are caused in part by a slump in convention business since the pandemic began, industry experts said. Conventions and other big events are seen as helpful in filling up hotel rooms during the middle of the week.

The weekday occupancy rate in Las Vegas during September was just 38.5 percent, according to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. The weekend rate was 66.1 percent.

Travel in and out of McCarran International Airport also has been in decline. In October 2020, airport travel was down by 57 percent when compared to the same month last year. This means 2.6 million fewer passengers this October used the airport than during the previous October.