Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Wynn: Cosmo is "an extraordinary example of ill-conceived plans”

Steve Wynn's still not sure how well Cosmopolitan will work out. He's not knocking the current operators, but he has some reservations. Some are the same as the concerns he had earlier this year when he described the ingress/egress issues he envisioned for it.

Friess: So you have actually been throughout Cosmo? Do you like the design of it?

Wynn: They have a nice room, Steve. You know, a nice commodious room, much better than Fontainebleau. The public area is layered on four levels or five. The entrance and exit of the place is [with a French accent] impossible. The access to the building is a nightmare.

Friess: Although for pedestrians its a lot easier than Aria, for example.

Wynn: Yeah, for pedestrians. If you are going to live off the people walking from Planet Hollywood, you will make four cents -- FOUR CENTS! -- from the people on the street in front of Planet Hollywood. Choke to death! This market can't exist on that type of stuff anymore. This market needs occupancy, big mid-week occupancy with conventions and stuff like that.

On the topic of whether it should ever have been built -- which he is quick to remind everyone is not the fault of the people running it now -- he doesn't hold back much, either.

Wynn: It's on such a difficult site. The access is so murderously challenging for the management. You know, the way we check in and check out 3,000 rooms on a Sunday. Right?

Friess: Right.

Wynn: How do you do that in that building?

Friess: You mentioned that. You mentioned that about the driveway was the first thing you noticed when went there was that the configuration of and I didn't quite get it until I went there myself but the configuration when you drive in is very weird.

Wynn: My point is that the Cosmopolitan is an extraordinary example of ill-conceived plans. If that young man they brought in, that nice man from Harrah's, if he makes a go of this, he gets the Nobel Prize.

That "nice young man," Cosmo CEO John Unwin, responded to all of this in my interview, which I just posted into The Strip Podcast's feed. Download it by right-clicking here or subscribe for free in iTunes or Zune.