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Aria Getting Clobbered on Yelp

By Chuckmonster on Friday, 4th June 2010 4:41pm
  » filed under Las Vegas  comments: 15


We've stayed at ARIA twice since the property opened. The first night was, well... the first night after the joint was opened - basically nursing a hangover from the previous evening's huuuge party. The second visit took place two months later, presumably after all the bugs have been worked out. They hadn't.

According to the latest round of reviews posted on Yelp.com, ARIA has had little success addressing the issues that plagued both of our visits - check in nightmares, buggy room technology, semi-unprofessional service, unavailable room preferences and hit or miss dining.

A look at the ratings trends does show that they are making some progress winning over the general public.

It has been nearly six months since ARIA opened. They have had almost 200 days to train employees, fix technology bugs, sort out their reservation system and confront the freakin' front desk clusterfuck.

If this is the best ARIA is going to get, then perhaps its time for a complete reboot of their hotel management methodology.

Tagged: aria las vegas   yelp   


Comments & Discussion:

Keep in my mind that the company running ARIA was also sued for mismanagement by their partner. Not to mention Perini also blaming them for unclear direction and insufficient time to complete the tasks set forward.

This is serious. Checking out other Las Vegas casino ratings on Yelp, Aria is a full 1 to 1.05 stars below the other hotels in its class. It's looking up at Wynn, Encore, Bellagio, Venetian, and Palazzo, and in the neighborhood of the Gold Coast, Santa Fe, Excalibur, Paris, and Monte Carlo. At 300+, they've got a pretty big sample size, so it's not a case of a few disgruntled cranks skewing the ratings. Chuck's chart shows a slightly bottom-heavy bell curve, which suggests a growing consensus of opinion.

I hope that the management takes the right steps to figure this out. It won't be through any lack of effort, I'm sure.

Part of the problem is MGM's insistence that Aria is a top (5 star) property, when really it is a 4 star property. Their marketing (as confusing as it is) raised expectations and set guests up for disappointment. They have been realistic (by lowering) the room rates, but still need to lower food and beverage prices (i.e. $25 drinks at Gold Lounge). MGM just needs to accept Aria's true status and market it as a solid convention property. They do have a problem that Aria's natural competition is the MGM Grand and MB. Vdara is almost a total loss and it's not clear to me that it can ever be fixed.

yelp = BS (site/moderators, not just users)

Maybe raising expectations too high has a price, no? Their roll-out campaign certainly promised the moon. Maybe too many people do think they're booking Bellagio's successor in the MGM Mirage universe.

Here's Plan B: "Just as Good as Mirage, Only Newer."

Aria is getting hit a bit on Trip Advisor as well, but like with Yelp, I take what folks post on there with a grain of salt. There are over 500 reviews of Aria on Trip Advisor and the overall rating is 3.5 out of 5.

Well think about it... you open a giant complex of hotels/retail/condos, conceived during an irrational time with different priorities, in an over saturated market with little hope of demand supporting it in the next couple years. Not to mention the lack of demand means this new property will inevitably cannibalize some of your own business elsewhere on the strip. My guess is that they are basically in snooze mode; just keeping the doors open until things "pick up" again, and when they see more opportunity, they will "re-launch" the resort with a renewed focus on customer service, marketing, etc. Yea, not the way I'd like to do it either, but this is a giant corporation where numbers on paper mean more than any sort of pride or dedication to customers.

They don't know what the resort should be because that wasn't necessary a few years ago: when "build it and they will come" was the prevailing mentality. Had it opened in 2006 or 7, even with the same problems and incompetence they are experiencing now, the place would likely be a madhouse raking in the dough.

The one thing it has going for it is that will be the newest resort on the strip for a long time now. So if demand starts to pick up again, they will be well situated to attract new customers.

Like others noted, I don't think they've marketed it right. I heard the pool area is fantastic, yet I've seen virtually nothing advertising or promoting that aspect of the resort. I think Crystals is a great space, yet they're not sure if they want it to be a sanctuary for free spending LA trophy wives, or a more public venue for camera toting tourists.

I am returning to Vegas for the first time in 2 years and wanted to go somewhere new. Aria was top of my list, after several stays in the Skylofts, it was my hope/perception that the SkySuites were to be Aria’s take on that.

I appreciate that Yelp/Trip Advisor is always going to be skewed, just because People are more likely to post a review if they are unhappy, I am just as guilty as anyone, but they are getting beaten out by the other 5 star resorts, even Sheldys and Trump, which I consider to be Pseudo 5 Star.

With the downturn, MGM had two choices, either provide the experience as marketed, and eat the resulting losses or do what they can to tide things over. They don’t have the cash in the Bank to do this. so their only option is to do the least they think they can get away with. That is what I believe they are doing.

Parchedearth/Drake have hit the nail on the head, they need to give it up, re-align all pricing and Market is as “Mirage – but newer!”.

skylofts has gone downhill, and hotel32 and skysuites launched terribly with some pretty ridiculous rates, even after many drops. presumably whatever they do at mirage will be similar to the latter 2.

i thought it was interesting that MikeE put mandarin ahead of his best skylofts stay. then he put encore apt with villa services (from ~$1500) ahead of mandarin.

re aria pools, liquid does look great. has 2 cabana levels with private pools.

still waiting on encore beach club floorplan...

We subscribe to a few foodie magazines, and I've been surprised that Bellagio is still advertised in all of them as a haven of gourmet dining and overall luxury. There have been no ads for Aria -- even when it opened. If MGM is trying to position Aria as its top spot, they're doing it wrong.

Kagehitokiri – I have seen a few disgruntled comments on Skylofts and have heard a few small things have changed, such as the petit fours at night and the fresh fruit no longer being offered.

However the rates are no longer the consistent firesale prices that were offered in 2009 and recent tripadvisor reports seem as good as ever.

Hotel32 was always going to be a Skylofts Lite, especially given the location and that they did nothing to enlarge the standard rooms on that floor – what is it they say that you cannot polish? ;-)

I wanted to try the MO, and got a “too good to refuse” rate on the Executive Suite, so I will be able to judge for myself in 3 weeks. The $1500 Encore Apt rate - I don’t think that will ever been seen again.

virtuoso still gets 15% off skylofts

encore 2BR from $2K right now, but they do last minute $1500

(kind of like skylofts, which discounts last minute and a year out)

also MO rates are pretty low at the moment
200 room
150 room after credit
~350 IIRC for suite after 3rd nt free

(and those dont reflect that large a drop)

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