LODGING / 1990-1999



Featured Developer:

Steve Wynn
Stephen Alan Wynn (born January 27, 1942 in New Haven, Connecticut) is a casino resort developer. He is credited with spearheading the dramatic resurgence and expansion of Las Vegas, Nevada in the 1990s.

Wynn graduated from The Manlius School, a private boys' school in upstate New York, in 1959. Wynn's father, Michael Weinberg, ran a string of bingo parlors in the eastern United States, and died shortly before Wynn graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1963 where he became an active brother of the Sigma Alpha Mu fraternity. Wynn took over running the family's bingo operation in Maryland. He did well enough at it to accumulate the money to buy a small stake in the Frontier Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, where he and his wife, Elaine, moved in 1967.

Wynn managed to parlay his profits from a land deal in the early 1970s (the deal involved two established titans of the Las Vegas casino business, Howard Hughes and Caesars Palace) into a controlling interest in a dusty downtown casino, the Golden Nugget Las Vegas (he also owned The Golden Nugget in Atlantic City). Wynn renovated, revamped and expanded the Golden Nugget with enormous success, in the process attracting a new upscale clientele to downtown Las Vegas.Steve Wynn at his Las Vegas Casino, the Wynn Las Vegas.

Wynn had previously acquired interests in various existing casinos. His first major Strip casino, The Mirage, set a new standard for size and lavishness, with construction costs to match. The Mirage featured an indoor forest and an outdoor "volcano," and with high-quality room appointments and an emphasis on service, the Mirage was another great success. The Mirage was the first project in which he was involved in the design and construction of a casino. Financed largely with junk bonds issued by Michael Milken it was considered a risky venture by the standards then prevailing in Las Vegas because of its high cost and emphasis on luxury. It proved to be enormously successful and made Wynn a major part of Las Vegas history.

Wynn expanded further on his concept of the luxury casino in the later Bellagio resort, including an artificial lake, indoor conservatory, and an art gallery in which Wynn displayed museum-quality artworks, and branches of high-end boutiques and restaurants located in Paris, San Francisco or New York. The Bellagio is credited with starting a new spree of luxurious developments in Las Vegas. Among these developments include The Venetian, Mandalay Bay, and Paris Las Vegas.

Mirage Resorts was sold to MGM Grand Inc. in 2000, to form MGM Mirage. With the money he made on that deal, and with his ability to secure ever-greater financing, Wynn built a new resort, his most expensive yet, the Wynn Las Vegas, which opened on the former site of the Desert Inn on April 28, 2005. Wynn is building a casino in Macau, a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of China. This property, known as Wynn Macau, is scheduled to open in September 2006.
1990 Excalibur   Las Vegas, NV www.excalibur.com
1992 Casino Royale   Las Vegas, NV  
1993 Luxor   Las Vegas, NV www.luxor.com
Treasure Island Steve Wynn Las Vegas, NV www.treasureisland.com
MGM Grand   Las Vegas, NV www.mgmgrand.com
Marina Hotel   Las Vegas, NV  
1994 Buffalo Bills   Primm, NV www.primmvalleyresorts.com
  The Fiesta   Las Vegas, NV  
1995 Luxury Collection      
Four Points by Sheraton Sheraton    
Hard Rock Hotel   Las Vegas, NV www.hardrockhotel.com
1996 Wingate Inn Keith J. Pierce    
  Mainstay Suites Choice Hotels    
  Monte Carlo   Las Vegas, NV www.montecarlo.com
  Stratosphere   Las Vegas, NV  
1997 TownePlace Suites Marriott    
New York-New York   Las Vegas, NV  
Sunset Station   Las Vegas, NV www.sunsetstation.com
1998 SpringHill Suites Marriott    
  Bellagio Steve Wynn Las Vegas, NV www.billagio.com
  W Hotels   New York, NY  
1999 Mandalay Bay   Las Vegas, NV www.mandalaybay.com
The Venetian Sand's Corporation Las Vegas, NV www.venetian.com
Paris Las Vegas   Las Vegas, NV  

1993 Dunes Hotel is sold to Steve Wynn's Mirage and is imploded on October 27
1995 Bill Bennett retires from Circus Circus and buys the Sahara Hotel
  Caesar's Palace is sold to ITT Corp
  Circus Circus buys Hacienda Hotel and the surrounding 100 acres (Soon to be Excalibur, Luxor and Mandalay Bay)
1996 Stratosphere Tower opens in the old Vegas World location
  The Sands Hotel is imploded on November 26 to make room for the new Venetian Resort
  The Hacienda Hotel is imploded to make room for future Casinos.
1999 The Flamingo Hilton Hotel changes names to Flamingo Las Vegas

Also at this time in History
Other Brands: 1993- Chipotle Mexican Grill opens in Colorado
  1995- Zuka Juice opens in Provo Utah (Later merges with Jamba Juice)
Other Things: 1912- New Mexico and Arizona are admitted as states.
  1912- The Titanic sinks on its maiden voyage after hitting an iceberg
  1919- Dial telephones are introduced by the American Telephone and Telegraph
     Company. Telephone operators, mostly women in the workforce, protest and
     threaten to strike.

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