The Conjuring of the Mirage

Great feature for Vegas Seven by David G. Schwartz marking the 25th anniversary of The Mirage:

Wynn had one advantage over his detractors: While many of them disdained the nuts and bolts of casino design, Wynn lived and breathed it. He was intimately involved with the design process — not to micromanage the team, but to provoke and inspire them.

“He created creativity,” Bergman recalls. “I can’t put it any other way. He has an insatiable work ethic. We had a ton of talent, and he brought it out in everyone. It was a fun project. There were moments, of course, where we struggled with the look of the building. The tower, for instance — we weren’t sure what we were going to have there. We built 50 different study models, then it fell into place.”

All along, Wynn was there, asking questions and sometimes offering answers. His own forte was space planning: What did the guest see when he arrived? How long could it take to get him where he wanted to go? Most important, how could he get there without getting frustrated?

The creative process was casual, with few set rules, but everyone knew that their boss wouldn’t tolerate anything less than excellence.

The difference between a Wynn casino — Mirage, Bellagio, Wynn/Encore — and nearly all other Vegas casinos is like the difference between an Apple Store and a Best Buy.

(Schwartz’s Grandissimo, by the way, is one of the best books I’ve read this year.)

Sunday, 4 May 2014