Palazzo Latest Las Vegas Resort to Close Hotel Tower During Tourism Slump

The Palazzo at the Venetian Resort is the latest property on the Las Vegas Strip to close its hotel rooms temporarily because of low consumer demand.

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The Palazzo, left, towers over the Las Vegas Strip. The resort has joined other properties in temporarily shuttering its hotel rooms because of the slowdown in tourism. (Image: KTNV-TV)

Effective immediately, the Palazzo tower suites will be closed every day of the week. This shutdown is occurring to “better reflect occupancy patterns,” a Las Vegas Sands Corp. spokesperson told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The hotel had stopped accepting weekday reservations in July.    

The casino at the resort will remain open with a limited number of table games and “minor adjustments to operating hours,” according to the newspaper. Restaurants, bars, and shops also will remain open.

The Venetian Resort is not expected to make changes in its operations, the newspaper reported.

The Venetian and Palazzo are on the east side of the Strip where the Sands hotel-casino once stood. The Sands was famous for the big-name entertainers, including  Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr., who performed in its marquee Copa Room. The Sands was demolished in 1996 to make way for the Venetian and Palazzo.

Midweek Doldrums

With a slump in tourism since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March, several large resorts on the Strip have closed their hotel towers during the middle of the week. These include the Mandalay Bay, Park MGM, and Mirage.

The Encore at Wynn Las Vegas closed its hotel and gaming areas on Tuesdays and Wednesdays because of low demand. This property also is on the Strip.

Some resorts have turned to strategies, such as lower room rates, to attract customers.

A falloff in conventions and large events is hurting midweek hotel occupancy rates, according to gaming experts. These events are seen as helpful in filling up hotel rooms during the weekdays.

Convention business is down nearly 70 percent this year, according to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. The midweek occupancy rate on the Strip is just 38.6 percent. On the weekends, the rate is 64.2 percent.

Airport Traffic Declines

The slowdown in tourism is showing up in the number of departures and arrivals at Southern Nevada’s McCarran International Airport.

In October 2020, 2.6 million fewer travelers used the airport than in the previous October. This October, 1.98 million airline passengers made their way through the airport, compared to 4.6 million the previous year. This represents a decline of 57 percent.

The October figures are the latest available from the Clark County Department of Aviation.

Gaming historian David G. Schwartz told Casino.org that tourism numbers will pick back up once the public feels safe regarding the pandemic.

“People are going to want to travel to Las Vegas,” he said.

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