Friday, January 30, 2009

This Week's LVW Col: Hispanics and Vegas

Here's this week's Strip Sense installment, a look at the one population that appears to be coming to Las Vegas more often these days and the interesting things the casinos are doing to cater to/appeal to them.

Si, Vamanos

Casinos are finally learning to appreciate how much Hispanics corazón Vegas


"You know,” Michael Weaver says to me at the tail end of a lunch appointment that has been filled largely with gloom about the state of the Vegas economy, “there actually is one segment of the population that is actually up over the year before.”

Uh, what?

“Yeah, it’s the strangest thing,” the Harrah’s marketing veep for Paris, Bally’s and Rio continues. “It might surprise you who.”

Hmm. Let’s see. We’re in the worst downturn in decades. Gaming and traveler figures have plummeted by numbers so shocking that even the biggest pessimist does a double take. Mammoth hotel structures stand along the Strip stuck mid-construction to taunt a greedy, overreaching industry that didn’t plan for the possibility that the boom would ever slow. And me? I had to travel to godforsaken Battle Mountain, crowned by the Washington Post in 2001 as the Armpit of America but thriving now as the price of gold soars, to find a story on anyone benefiting from this misery.

Yeah, Michael. I’d be surprised. Not just about who but by the very concept of good economic news. Hit me with it.

“Hispanics,” he says. “The Asians, the gays, the general market, customers in every age, geography and gender category are all down. The one consistent demo where you see increases are Latinos.”

We’ll get around to why this may be in a moment. But first, an answer to my—and likely your—first question: How do they even know?

Read the rest HERE


Anonymous said...

Great article Steve! As it goes to show, ther is really only one color that matters to America and that is the color green!
Living is So Cal all my life I have ahad a multitude of freinds and family who have moved to Las Vegas for the jobs, reasonable price of housing, etc. But there has always been a segment that just enjoyed going to Las Vegas as a diversion from life (i.e. escapism for a weekend or a week) the ability to gamble at low denominations and get a great room at a nice place for a fantastic price.
I recently stayed at an Econo lodge in Anaheim for $63 (Hojo's was over $109)and they were just okay, but for those prices in Las Vegas I can stay at a 4 or 5 star resort!