Listen .....i like adele/....... she is a good singer and all ...........but 200k for a ticket ......bollocks........ as they say in England ..........listen......... Vegas has become a fucking toilet ....unless........ the Seminoles take it over ........i have been there 3 times ........pre covid......... before all the stupid ass....... fucking vaccine shit ...........and scam......... started when it was fun........everyone is afraid of everything now .......Vegas has become a pussy paradise ....it used to be a degenerates heaven .....now it's a pussies heaven .........Dubai is the new degenerates heaven ........Vegas has lost its shine in degeneracy ........the sphere hotel is a poor show of how they are trying to keep up with Dubai ......but those Arabs have so...... so....... so much fucking cash ......only the Seminoles can bring back the old Vegas ........what fucking retarded idiot would pay 200 k for a ticket ....no concert is worth it none .......unless you can bring back Elvis or johnny cash ....otherwise nope .........
This autumn, social media has a new star: the Las Vegas Sphere. From the jaw-dropping visuals of U2’s inaugural concert to the surreal images of a 300-ft blinking eyeball watching over the Strip at night, this very modern marvel has been popping up everywhere on Facebook and X/Twitter.
Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised: the Sphere certainly makes for arresting content. But as a long-time Vegas devotee, I can’t help but see something else amidst the splendour. To me, the $2.3 billion orb looks less like the future of entertainment and more like a giant bubble that could pop any minute. And that makes it the perfect metaphor for Vegas in 2023.
Anyone who has visited Sin City since the great reopening will understand what I mean. While stubborn inflation and a strong dollar have affected any transatlantic holiday, the situation on the Strip has been on another level: with the prices of hotels, hospitality and gambling itself shooting through the roof.
Indeed last year analysts at JP Morgan estimated that the weekend rate of the typical Las Vegas hotel room had risen 51 per cent since the pandemic. For the major Strip hotels – the likes of the Bellagio and Caesars Palace – starting rates on Saturday nights routinely exceed £300. Book when a big event is in town and you could pay double that.
What has gone wrong? According to local expert Scott Roeben – author of the Vital Vegas blog – the price hikes reflect a fundamental shift in how the city operates. With more American states liberalising rules around casinos and sports betting, Sin City is no longer primarily about gambling, but instead offering top-ticket experiences.
Next month will see the latest example, as Las Vegas becomes the third US city to host a Formula 1 Grand Prix. F1 owners Liberty Media have ploughed $500 million into the endeavour, backed by several casino resorts hoping to join them in cashing in. Premium ticket packages, including accommodation, are being marketed at $60,000.
The Grand Prix isn’t just inflating hotel prices. The preparation for the race – which has seen much of the Strip closed off at times – has been causing consternation for locals and tourists alike for months. “At the moment, you can’t actually see the Bellagio Fountains,” says Scott Roeben. “It’s ironic given they were one of the few things you could enjoy for free in this city.”
Once the big race is over, Vegas will turn its attention to the next sporting spectacle: the Super Bowl. Next February will be the first time the game comes to Vegas. But tourism experts have spotted a potential problem: Super Bowl weekend was already over-saturated, with out-of-towners flocking in to watch the action in sports bars. Next time around will be even worse.
It’s a similar story with concerts. Whereas Vegas residences were once associated with faded stars, they are now the preserve of global chart-toppers like Adele and Kylie Minogue. Premium tickets for Adele’s show at Caesars Palace have been spotted on parasitic resale websites for as much as $200,000.
While these kinds of prices might sound like isolated extreme examples, the bubble effect can be felt across Vegas. Inflated drink prices and celebrity-backed restaurants aren’t just hitting tourists’ budgets, but are stripping the city of its spontaneous spirit: even Chapel marriages have fallen by 40 per cent.
The casino resorts aren’t too worried. They’ve probably worked out that visitors splurging tens of thousands of dollars on once-in-a-lifetime Adele tickets are less likely to complain about paying a premium on their drinks, or being subjected to “surge pricing” in food outlets.
Will the bubble burst? While I’m keeping my fingers crossed, the official indicators suggest otherwise. Tourism data shows a sizable jump in visitors looking for “experiences”, rather than gambling, and in particular sports games. Revenues for the cage-fighting specialists UFC (now a staple of Las Vegas nightlife) are up 57 per cent in one year.
So what hope is there for those of us who loved the pre-bubble Vegas? Thankfully, the downtown district of Fremont Street – home to iconic casinos like Four Queens and the Golden Nugget – remains a sanctuary of old-school Vegas decadence. Room rates are up, but nowhere near as much as on the Strip.
Another option is to do what I did this spring. Rent yourself a car and avoid the premium prices by spending the weekend elsewhere in Nevada – I recommend the haunting beautiful former mining town of Beatty and the utterly surreal casino resorts of Primm – before heading back into town when things calm down on Sunday and Monday.
Not only will it slash the cost of your Vegas vacation, you’ll also have a better adventure to boot. And don’t worry: the Sphere will still be there when you get back.