Inside Wynn Paradise Park
A Model Analysis
First, the obvious... golf balls hurt and 100 foot tall nets are unsightly and psychologically confining.
Next point. At the beginning of the presentation, Mr. Wynn said:
This company caters to the top end of the gaming world. We're sort of the Chanel and Louis Vuitton, to use the metaphor of the retail business. But unlike Chanel and Louis Vuitton we are able in our business to cater to all of the market by making our standards so high that everybody wants to be in the building. Or to put it in a more colloquial way, rich people only like being around rich people. Nobody likes being around poor people. Especially poor people. (Laughs) So we try and make the place feel upscale for everyone.
No amount of exquisitely dyed hair, bleached teeth, spray tans, tennis whites, Rolex watches or Chopard sunglasses is going to change the fact that Wynn Paradise Park is a water park with piped in spa jams. Building an aquatic recreation attraction at this scale - with the expectation that 10,000 people per day will pay $25-50 for admission - is the antithesis of the luxury resort experience. Water parks, no matter how fanciful the atmosphere or dainty the decor do not attract rich people. Water parks attract the mass market - families with children.
If you discard The Steve's rhetorical tautology - Wynn properties are Chanel and Louis Vuitton because they repeatedly say they are - and look at the facts, Wynn Paradise Park isn't a reinvention of Las Vegas, it is a de-evolution and reconstruction of vintage Wynn's philosophy. Steve is not doubling down on boutique luxury, he's hedging his bets with a mass market water park attraction. THIS is the lesson that he's learned via the junket squeeze and recession in Macau.
Do I have to mention Encore Beach Club?
I'm certainly fascinated by Wynn Paradise Park, particularly the idea of the boutique beach hotel. It will be interesting seeing post-Atlantic City, post-Cotai design strokes applied to a wholly-owned boardwalk, beach and midway. I'll travel to China to see new ideas and resort art from Roger Thomas. What I have a hard time rectifying is Wynn's belief that Wynn Paradise Park will be the intersection of San Tropez, Pebble Beach and Disneyland. Steve Wynn obviously loves Walt Disney. He sorta sees himself as a bit of a Walt Disney. Walt Disney, and the Disney brand isn't about luxury. Walt Disney is all about creating hugely profitable media that is squarely targeted at the mass market.
Do I have to mention the Star Wars reboot?
Wynn Paradise Park has more to do with The Mirage, Mandalay Bay and Tropicana than Bellagio, Mandarin Oriental or Wynn. In essence this is a boutique hotel with a giant pool wrapped in a confusing ball of Steve Wynn's exclusionary mass marketing. 1989 isn't just a Taylor Swift album.
This is Wynn's answer to ālon!
If, in Steve Wynn's mind, building a 1,000 room, crescent-shaped beach experience boutique hotel is his carefully considered knockout blow targeted at ālon, then he and his fellow Kool-Aid drinkers in the Wynn organization truly have no idea what the point of ālon is. I won't bother ruining it for them. Now you know why Andrew Pascal isn't running naked through the streets of Las Vegas tossing frijoles and ālon factoids at every Wordpress jockey in town..
Wynn Paradise Park is certainly an answer. But in my mind, this answer from Wynn isn't an effective offense or counter thrust to the silent stealthy threat ālon poses to Wynn. If anything, Wynn Paradise Park - at least as relates to ālon - is an epic case of self-incrimination that only ratifies the constitution which ālon's rebel alliance is fighting for.
And then The Strip will run blue, with blood.