The upcoming March Madness tournament will see room rates skyrocket in Las Vegas.
In resort casinos on the other side of the valley, room prices skyrocket this weekend. The high prices suggest that demand for Las Vegas vacations is picking up, especially now that COVID-19 case numbers are falling.
A stay at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas this Saturday starts at $ 650, based on rates posted on Hotels.com. Last week a weekend break started at $ 325. A stay at the Red Rock Resort rose from $ 188 to $ 399 over the same period.
Red Rock spokesmen declined to comment, and Cosmopolitan spokesmen did not return a request for comment.
At Circa, rooms start at $ 399 this Saturday, up $ 100 from rooms last weekend, according to the company’s website. The tournament promises to bring a lot of business to the city center and the three-story sports betting, even if the casino’s occupancy is capped at 50 percent.
“We are reaching full utilization of all properties,” said Angela Ciciriello, spokeswoman for sister properties Circa, D Las Vegas and Golden Gate.
Starting room rates at certain Caesars Entertainment Inc. hotels will also rise this weekend. A stay at the Rio that started at $ 64 last Saturday starts at $ 139 this Saturday, based on rates posted on Hotels.com. In the meantime, the starting prices for the Flamingo rose from $ 149 to $ 175.
“Las Vegas has always been a top sports fanatic destination, and with the triumphant return of March Madness, hotel bookings have spiked across the city,” said a Caesars spokesman.
A spokeswoman for MGM Resorts International said the spring break had also boosted bookings.
“We are optimistic that demand will continue to grow in the coming weeks and months as the economy and our industry continue to recover,” said company spokeswoman Callie Driehorst.
The spokesmen for the three other largest gambling operators in Las Vegas – Boyd Gaming Corp., Las Vegas Sands Corp. and Wynn Resorts Ltd. – declined to comment or did not return any request for a comment.
Rising room rates may be bad news for budget travelers, but it could be a boon to Las Vegas resorts and the state.
The city’s average daily room rate in January was 41 percent year-over-year to $ 90.71, according to the latest monthly report from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.
Less spending by visitors means less funding for the state; Nevada levied nearly $ 1.3 billion in taxes on the tourism industry in fiscal 2020, down 29 percent year over year. That decline affects state and local services like education, according to the Nevada Resort Association’s Nevada Gaming Fact Book of 2021.
The NCAA basketball tournament is known as one of the biggest annual events for Las Vegas casinos. Companies missed potential profits last year when the tournament was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. This year, however, it should be back in full swing. The American Gaming Association estimates that more than 47 million Americans will be placing bets on this year’s March Madness tournament, similar to 2019.
The tournament begins on Friday after the four warm-up games on Thursday.
The review journal is owned by the family of Sheldon Adelson, the late CEO and chairman of Las Vegas Sands Corp.
This is a developing story. Check for updates again.
Contact Bailey Schulz at [email protected]. consequences @bailey_schulz on twitter.