Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Desecration of Aria Has Begun!

So much for wishful thinking. Here the MGM Resorts geniuses go, defacing a beautiful building with a tacky wrap and proving to the world that Las Vegas does not deserve nor in any way appreciate the work of great architects.

Here's a close-up:

Any guesses what it's going to be? I would think "Viva Elvis" would be the most likely choice but the figures we can see so far don't look right for that.

Just a reminder, there's absolutely no evidence that wraps on the I-15 side of resorts do anything to drive business. MGM Resorts tried, in fact, to rent out the I-15 side of the Luxor a couple of years ago:

Nobody in the advertising world took that bait. That should tell them something about the actual value of the signs, and the trade-off in slapping bumper stickers all over their crown jewel. Sad.

[h/t for pix to Panoramy.]


mike_ch said...

You know that other iconic buildings in other cities that aren't Vegas get used as advertising pretty frequently, right?

The Space Needle has been frequently used to display Microsoft advertising, and I know that it's roof has been used to be painted with logos and a Wheel of Fortune wheel on occasion. The Hollywood Sign used to get commercial alterations until the government got enough complaints from residents. And of course buildings all over Manhattan are covered in ads.

The reality is that Aria is as much like Madison Square Garden or the Space Needle (which is held in it's own corporation) than it is the Hollywood Sign or Golden Gate Bridge (owned by a government.)

It's ugly, sure, but me thinks one complains a bit much, perhaps due to one's condo facing this advertisement. I can understand, but do what people in any city do, and work with your neighbours to petition the county to set height limits on advertising.


Mike - there is a very big difference here. None of those structures were designed by any of the world's greatest architects as symbols of beauty and elegance. MGM made a claim about what they were aiming to accomplish with CityCenter. That it what we judge him and his actions by.

As for your obnoxious inference that my concern is the view from the condo, I thought you knew me and my motives better than that. That is an incredibly insulting and disappointing remark/snark. We won't even own the thing in about two weeks, and I've only spent maybe 12 hours inside the unit since we closed on it three years ago. But I've been writing about building wraps for many years and, in fact, I confronted Jim Murren about the Elvis wrap on the Harmon in Nov 2009 and the Mandarin Oriental sign in Oct 2009. The Harmon and MO are not visible from Panorama Towers.

Unknown said...

I believe you're incorrect regarding nobody taking the bait on Luxor. I vaguely remember heinous ads for Absolut and the Transformers movie. I'm going by memory, but I'm pretty sure there's been a couple of eyesores on the pyramid. Love the site, Steve.


Mark - those ads were on the east side of the pyramid facing the airport where millions of people land and stare at it while taxi-ing to gates. They also pre-dated this effort to sell the other sides of the building. Thanks!

Michael (@jinxclev) said...

I despise the building wraps in general, although I love that MGM is tacky enough to put wraps on CC, but originally didn't want a strip marquee as that would be too tacky.

Brilliant. There is a part of me that loves that MGM continues to wrap CC, if for no other reason, I'm enjoying the Vegasication of the property, and I think within 5 years, you'll see a lot more of it. The capper would be something like Beer Pong in a section of the Aria casino. (I exaggerate, but only a little I think).

Amy said...

We now have two panels to work with. Tell Vanna to turn the letters. I'm going with "Elvis is in the building."