Archive for the ‘Las Vegas’ Category

In their March newsletter, the U.S. Green Building Council’s Nevada Chapter has some nice words about our sustainability efforts:

Senior Vice President Norbert Riezler, who heads our procurement and sustainability operations, discusses the environmental strategy behind Sands  ECO360°.

Senior Vice President Norbert Riezler, who heads our procurement and sustainability operations, discusses the environmental strategy behind Sands ECO360°.

This month’s Friend of the Chapter Spotlight shines on the Las Vegas Sands Corporation, a proud supporter of USGBC-NV. They live and breathe sustainability through their Sands’ ECO360 Global Sustainability program.

The Venetian, the Palazzo and Sands Expo comprise one of the largest LEED buildings in the world and the principles of green building design, construction and operation provide a solid foundation for furthering the company’s environmental goals.

As they continue improving the efficiency of their buildings, they also look for fun ways to encourage their team members around the world to join in conserving resources.

For the past three years, the Las Vegas Sands has participated in the World Wildlife Fund’s Earth Hour that challenges organizations and individuals to turn off lights for one hour on March 23 to raise awareness about protecting the planet.

This year, they have set the eco-conscious bar a little higher by joining the new Earth Hour “I Will If You Will” challenge. The simple concept encourages extending a friendly challenge to others to expand the reach of Earth Hour.

Read the rest here.

Grazie–Are You In?

March 20th, 2013 | Darcy Martinez

Executive Director of Marketing Tyler Bain sat down with us recently to talk about Grazie, the loyalty program at The Venetian and The Palazzo, and how it benefits both guests and team members. This is part one of a Q&A series.

The affluent, the cultured, the fashionable and famous, Grazie is your all-access pass to the most enviable events and exclusive offers.

The affluent, the cultured, the fashionable and famous, Grazie is your all-access pass to the most enviable events and exclusive offers.

Q. So, why should guests enroll in Grazie?

Tyler Bain: When guests become members, they immediately get benefits: Car rental discounts, access to the VIP line at Grand Lux Cafe, suite and ticket upgrades, and email offers.

Q. Are there other incentives to get the attention of Grazie members?

Tyler Bain: There are a lot of them. Members get rewarded for everything they do here. When they play slot and video poker games, they earn Slot Reward Points which can be redeemed for slot credits and resort comps. Members also earn Status Points for playing their favorite games and for all charges made to their suites. These Status Points enable Grazie members to reach higher status levels.

Q. What are these status levels?

Tyler Bain: There are three. Upon enrolling in the program, members automatically become part of the Grazie status level. As members earn more Status Points, they can achieve Gold or even Platinum status. The higher the status level, the more exclusive the benefits and faster points can be earned.

Q. So there’s a third type of points?

Tyler Bain: Yes, Grazie Gift Points. Members earn these points through slot and video poker play, and use them at our annual Grazie Gifts Extravaganza. This is a huge shopping event where Grazie members can select from an incredible selection of items, from jewelry to motorcycles, televisions, cars, and pretty much anything you can imagine. They use Grazie Gift Points like currency and they love it.

Here at Grazie, we’re so much more than a players club. We’re a loyalty program that rewards guests of The Venetian and The Palazzo for staying in our lavish suites, dining in our exquisite eateries, shopping at our fabulous boutiques, and of course, gaming in our extravagant casinos. The points you earn as our loyal guest entitle you to outstanding perks.

Here at Grazie, we’re so much more than a players club. We’re a loyalty program that rewards guests of The Venetian and The Palazzo for staying in our lavish suites, dining in our exquisite eateries, shopping at our fabulous boutiques, and of course, gaming in our extravagant casinos. The points you earn as our loyal guest entitle you to outstanding perks.

Earth Hour is this Saturday!  We hope that as many people as possible will show their “green” spirit by turning off lights on Saturday night, taking part in the I Will If You Will campaign, and challenging others to join as well.

To provide some last-minute inspiration for those who are looking for some fun challenges, I talked with The Venetian|Palazzo’s assistant director of sustainability, Rishi Tirupari, to see what our own team members are doing. Check it out!

Katarina: Rishi, it seems like The Venetian|Palazzo’s team members have some terrific ideas for the I Will If You Will campaign – tell me about it?

Sands’ Assistant Director of Sustainability, Rishi Tirupari.

The Venetian|Palazzo Assistant Director of Sustainability, Rishi Tirupari.

Rishi:  They definitely have!  Here are just a couple of examples – Sebastien Silvestri, our head of food and beverage for The Venetian|Palazzo, has promised that he will make lunch for his team if 400 of his team members take part in Earth Hour.  The director of public area department, Rick Walter, has promised that he and his managers will clean our casino and pick up trash if 80 percent of his team members join Earth Hour. Additionally, Ashlyn LaPorte and the Sands Expo management team will take alternate transportation to work if 80 of Sands Expo team members use alternate transportation at least once before Earth Day.

Katarina: Those are great challenges, and so different from each other.

Rishi:  Yes, that’s been the best part. I love seeing how this campaign has inspired our team in such different ways, and how we can help others. Kristen Dimond, head of hotel operations and her executive team for The Venetian|Palazzo will volunteer for eight hours with Habitat for Humanity to build a house for a family in need, if 500 team members bring old cell phones, plastic bottles and cans to recycle at work on March 19. Did you ever think that turning off your lights could help build someone’s home?

Katarina: That’s great! Which challenge do you think has been the most creative?

Rishi: That’s hard to say, but here’s one. John Caparella, the president of The Venetian|Palazzo and Sands Expo, and Pete Boyd, the senior vice president of operations at The Venetian|Palazzo have said that if 1,000 team members participate in Earth Hour, they will pedal bike-powered blenders to create smoothies for all of them!  I think everyone is excited about that!

I hope this has given you some new ideas about how we can expand Earth Hour and help others. Earth Hour is on March 23 at 8:30 p.m. local time.

Can You Name The World’s Largest Five Diamond Resort?

March 11th, 2013 | Jeff Birchmeier

We have worked really hard to create a resort where guests, and even our fellow team members, receive an unparalleled and unique experience in a place like no other—with people like no other. Within our walls are the most dedicated, passionate and service-minded professionals on the Las Vegas Strip and in the world.

In the past year and a half, our team members supported one another and encouraged each other to strive to be the best; and it is with great pleasure to share with the public that The Venetian and The Palazzo both earned their fifth diamond, yet again, continuing our title as the largest Five Diamond resort in the entire world.

For 77 years, AAA has used professional inspectors to conduct in-person property inspections and publish the results, on a system of One to Five Diamonds. Hotels in all categories are subject to the same basic requirements for cleanliness, comfort and hospitality in order to be AAA approved. A Five Diamond rating is given to a hotel that offers ultimate luxury, sophistication and comfort with extraordinary physical attributes, meticulous personalized service, extensive amenities and impeccable standards of excellence.

Hotels at this rating level offer an extensive array of amenities and a high degree of hospitality, service and attention to detail. Among the 30,000 AAA approved and diamond rated hotels for 2013, less than one-third of 1% received the AAA Five Diamond rating. It’s an honor to be among these few fine hotels year after year.

Of the 30,000 AAA approved and diamond rated hotels for 2013, less than one-third of 1% received the AAA Five Diamond rating.

Meet Our Newest Team Member: Sophie Chow

February 19th, 2013 | Darcy Martinez

In celebration of Spring Festival, also known as Chinese New Year, we are kicking off the “Year of the Snake” with beautiful décor and exciting events! Kudos to Claudia Valteirrez, Ernie Cabrera, Kent Bagnell and their teams for all the hard work and dedication that went into the installation of Sophie Chow, an animatronic work of art! Take a look:

Sophie Chow

With a length of 98 feet and features that include blinking eyes, a tongue that goes in and out and a moving head, this immense arrangement looms virtually 38 feet above The Waterfall & Atrium Gardens of The Palazzo.

A giant peach tree holding blossom vines embellished with roughly 193,600 flowers, custom made dancing lanterns, oranges and traditional I Ching coins, derived from a collaboration of artists and artisans from all over the world, gave inspiration for Sophie’s strategic design.

Come see our Chinese New Year’s decorations.

“Chinese New Year is such a special event to our guests, that constructing and designing something that’s not only authentic, but in grand Las Vegas fashion was important,” said Dana Beatty, director of floral and horticulture.

Peach and cherry blossoms were also placed in the Atrium Gardens to offer our own spring season, since there will be no spring in the 2013 lunar year. Special planning a year in advance went into choosing the flower selections to ensure that only the best ones were used. “This year we went completely out of the box and ran with the Feng shui philosophy to bring our own spring season to life. We brought in pink and green cymbidium orchids and lavender mums to name just a few.”

For the past two years, professional Feng Shui master Peter Lung has offered inspiration for both The Venetian and The Palazzo designs. Here are some fun facts related to Feng Shui and the “Year of the Snake.”

  • The snake is blue, as the “Year of the Snake” represents water.
  • Sophie Chow’s face intentionally looks juvenile to represent birth of a new year.
  • It is recommended that guests walk clockwise around the tree and snake display three times to bring blessings of Heaven, Earth, and Mankind upon them.

The Venetian and The Palazzo welcomed the Year of the Snake on Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013 with a traditional dragon dance. Sheldon Adelson, our chairman and CEO, was in attendance to paint the eyes of the dragon and bring it to life, kicking off the Chinese New Year.

Dancers from the Yau Kung Mon Kung Fu School of U.S.A. from Los Angeles and San Francisco paraded through both properties, offering blessings to bring our guests good luck throughout the year. Crowds gathered to watch the dragon dance and take photos of the 98-ft blue water snake coiled in the 38-ft peach blossom tree.

The main feature of The Venetian and The Palazzo’s Chinese New Year 2013 art installation was, of course, Sophie Chow, the snake tangled in her home, a giant peach blossom tree. To commemorate the Year of the Snake, the resort’s floral and horticulture team worked with 77 artists and artisans from around the world, and also consulted a Feng Sui master. For a behind-the-scenes look at the installation process, check out this video:

Make note: On Feb. 23, The Venetian and The Palazzo will host a Lantern Festival from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Guests can revel in the tradition and romance of the festive celebration. The event will feature Chinese music, Asian-style cocktails, dim sum, and desserts. Tickets are $48.88 and can be purchased here

Zine Noodles Dim Sum at The Palazzo is offering a Chinese New Year inspired menu through Feb. 16, and Fusion Mixology Bar will offer the Jaina cocktail, which was created for Chinese New Year. You can find out more about all of the Chinese New Year events offered at The Venetian and The Palazzo here.

Vegas Is Back

February 11th, 2013 | J.C.

Because every year-end core indicator was positive in 2012 – occupancy, average daily room rate and auto travel – Las Vegas may well reach 40 million visitors in 2013.

Las Vegas Review-Journal: “Las Vegas, we didn’t quite make it to 40 million visitors in 2012, but we came close. When all was said and done, 39.7 million people came to the city in 2012, up 2.1 percent from 2011′s final total of 38.9 million visitors, according to the monthly Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority count released Friday. And even though it’s not quite 40 million, 2012 still was a record year for Las Vegas – the previous high was 39.2 million visitors in 2007.”

Known for his lightning speed and superb footwork, thanks to years of martial-arts training, many of Zou Shiming’s opponents complain that they cannot keep up with him, much less see his withering punches coming. He has stated that his heroes are Muhammad Ali and Jackie Chan.

A two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time World Amateur Champion, Shiming arrived at The Venetian Las Vegas on Tuesday, Feb. 5, to begin training for his professional boxing debut.  He was greeted by his promoters, Bob Arum and Todd duBoef of Top Rank; his new trainers, Freddie Roach and Miguel Diaz; and John Caparella, president and COO of The Venetian and The Palazzo.

Shiming began training the following day in a custom gym located inside the resort complex. He will train at The Venetian and The Palazzo through Feb. 15, and then move to the Top Rank Gym, also located in Las Vegas, through March 23. He will then return to China for his last two weeks of training camp.

Shiming is scheduled to make his professional boxing debut on April 6 at The Venetian Macao Resort Hotel.

One of the most popular Olympic athletes in the People’s Republic of China, Shiming is the world’s greatest amateur light flyweight, capturing gold medals in the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympic Games. In the 2005, 2007, and 2011 World Amateur Championships, Shiming also brought home gold medals, making him his nation’s first boxing gold medalist in the World Amateur Championships and Olympics. He also became his nation’s first Olympic medalist in boxing when he earned bronze in 2004.

CBS News: “Macau–The New Las Vegas?”

January 15th, 2013 | J.C.

Interesting CBS News report on Macao, featuring an interview with our own Edward Tracy.

Two Team Members Earn Stars Of The Industry Awards

December 28th, 2012 | Jeff Birchmeier

As we approach the New Year, I’d like to highlight some outstanding team members. The Nevada Hotel and Lodging Association (the state’s largest industry advocate) hosted the Stars of the Industry awards. This event recognizes and honors top employees and leaders in our state with nominations submitted by their peers and supervisors.

The Venetian|The Palazzo proudly nominated nine Team Members, whom throughout their careers have demonstrated exceptional commitment to their profession and the people around them.
Congratulations to our winners and nominees:

Administrative Employee of the Year: Judy Sanchez
Casino Employee of the Year: David Wilhite (Winner)
Guest Service Employee of the Year: Christian Osenbaugh
Hotelier of the Year: John Caparella
Housekeeping Employee of the Year: Versella Johnson
Maintenance Employee of the Year: Kacey Karas
Manager of the Year: Arlene Gregory
Rising Star Supervisor of the Year: Oystein Larsen (Winner)
Sustainability Award: Rishi Tirupari on behalf of our Sustainability Department

Left-Right: Judy Sanchez (Special Events); David Wilhite (Table Games); Kacey Karas (Facilities); Eric Bello (Chairman of NHLA); Oystein Larsen (TDR); Rishi Tirupari (Sustainability); Arleen Gregory (Finance) and Chris Osenbaugh (Guest Services). Not photographed: Versella Johnson (PAD) and Manuel Santana (Stwearding).