Asian firm Genting Group buys site of stalled Vegas Strip casino
LAS VEGAS (AP) - Panda habitats, tea gardens and red pagodas have never been part of the visual vocabulary of the Las Vegas Strip. But Sin City is about to get all three and much more as a Malaysian conglomerate prepares to build the first new mega-casino to come to town since the recession wiped out a slew of projects in 2008.
The Genting Group announced on Monday that it will break ground in 2014 on the 35-hectare site where the partially built Echelon project has sat for nearly five years, put on indefinite hold by Boyd Gaming Corp.
Executives said they are launching the new project despite continued softness in Las Vegas gambling revenue because they are ideally positioned to capitalise on the flood of Asian tourists flocking to the Strip.
Government officials, including Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Republican Gov Brian Sandoval, applauded the news, saying the project could breathe new life into a tired stretch of the tourist corridor where several projects stalled during the recession.