SLS Las Vegas Set to Reboot The North Strip

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Until now the north end of Las Vegas strip has suffered from the ‘ugly step sister’ syndrome. Empty plots of half-completed dreams sit where old hotels were razed to make room for billion-dollar luxury resorts that never materialized. That’s all about to change. Sbe Hospitality Group announced plans to redevelop Sahara Hotel & Casino into a swanky SLS Las Vegas.

If it ain’t broke don’t try to fix it. Much like other sbe’s properties in LA –with over 30,000 sf of indoor/outdoor function space, including 12,000-sf of dedicated meeting space–and soon-to-open Miami, Vegas hotel will follow brand’s established DNA. It will feature an all-encompassing, mixed-use resort and casino with more than 1,600 guest rooms and suites as well as a collection of sbe’s restaurant and nightlife venues. Appealing to the conservationist, three existing Sahara towers will remain while the other two will be–in true Vegas fashion–stripped down to their skeletons.

Philippe Starck will oversee the design, sprinkling signature ‘Modern Goth’ fairy dust over his first-ever Vegas project. In addition to Katsuya by Starck, a sushi restaurant, James Beard Award-winning chef José Andrés will perform culinary magic at The Bazaar, SLS’s signature tapas restaurant. This wouldn’t be Vegas without a proper venue to shake your tail feathers, so Shelter, sbe’s original nightlife concept, is set to stir things up.

Unlike other Vegas hospitality offerings that embraced ultra-luxury with a verve of a kid in a candy shop (that is until the economic downturn casted a long shadow over all that’s excessive and glitz), SLS Las Vegas aims to deliver an experience that is accessible and appealing.

“This is a refreshing, fun and accessible take on Vegas luxury,” says sbe’s founder Sam Nazarin. Judging by his other properties, where rooms start at $370 and tiny tapas plate averages $10 a pop, the ‘accessible’ bit is obviously up for debate.

Still, it’s all music to Nevada’s governor’s ears. “This will make an immediate and positive impact in Las Vegas, infusing hundreds of millions of dollars into our economy and creating thousands of jobs,” says Brian Sandoval of the development.

This marks sbe’s first foray into an underdeveloped area, signifying group’s growing brand power. SLS Beverly Hills and SLS Miami are both located in prime locations. SLS Las Vegas and its take on accessible luxury is set to open its doors in 2014.

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