Following the success of other city-themed hotels and casinos including the Venetian, Paris, and New York New York, an Oakland-themed hotel is slated to open in Las Vegas.
The project tentatively named “Las Vegas Oakland” is slated to break ground in late 2014. The financiers behind Coliseum City—Colony Capital and HayaH Holdings—are also the lead financiers behind this new Las Vegas resort hotel, and insist that the construction of this hotel, like the proposed Coliseum City, is in no way a mirage or insurance scheme. A spokesperson for the new hotel told Oakland Unseen, “We don’t just believe in the city, we believe in the power of the Oakland brand.”
In 2011 the New York Times rated Oakland the fifth most popular place to visit in the world. However, while people are willing to acknowledge Oakland’s rise as an artistic and culinary center, few want to visit the city because of its crime problems and bad reputation. So the same team behind Coliseum City decided to recreate the best parts of Oakland all under 1 roof in Las Vegas.
The to-scale model of the Tribune Tower is the most expensive penthouse at Las Vegas Oakland.
When you enter the hotel, you’re greeted by an MC Hammer impersonator, (or is it MC Hammer?) You have the choice between many suites named after famous people in Oakland’s history, including Jack London, Gertrude Stein, Bruce Lee, Bill Russell, and Richard Aoki. The most expensive suite is the penthouse at the top of the to-scale recreation of the Tribune Tower called “the Dennis Chaconas.” It will set you back $89 million dollars.
Instead of a pirate show like they have at Treasure Island, in the parking lot at Las Vegas Oakland, every night at midnight is a recreation of the Eastmont Mall sideshows that took place at the height of the Hyphy Movement. But don’t be worried about security during your stay at the Las Vegas Oakland, because every inch of the hotel and resort is covered by cameras provided by the people behind the Domain Awareness Center.
Every night at Las Vegas Oakland at midnight there’s a sideshow in the parking lot for the entertainment of hotel and resort guests.
Also signed up is Cirque du Soleil who will produce a new show tentatively titled “Occupy Cirque.” As a first for the entertainment powerhouse, audience members will have the opportunity to join performers directly on stage during the show. Keeping with the theme, patrons are asked to repeat every line of the socialist-driven dialog in the hastily-assembled script, and those who violate the show’s no filming policy will have their cameras broken by acrobats dressed as Oakland police officers.
For the budget-conscious traveler, you can stay in a tent on the front lawn as part of the recreation of the Occupy Oakland encampment in Oscar Grant Plaza. Those looking for extreme budget discounts can stay in half-built rooms modeled after the slumlord projects at 715 Peralta Street, or stay in a recreation of the charred remains of the senior center next to West Oakland BART.
Las Vegas Oakland’s to-scale replica of Oakland’s key buildings (such as the Fox Theater above) allows tourists to experience Oakland without actually having to go into the dangerous city.
Many Oakland buildings and iconic art pieces will be recreated in the hotel’s street frontage beside a fountain inspired by Lake Merritt. While not confirmed, there is speculation that the developers are negotiating with the city to transport Oakland’s hidden “Remember Them” sculpture to the hotel. According to a gaming expert, placing these statues of human rights advocates above gaming tables will contribute to the atmosphere to encourage more betting.
Oakland Mayor Jean Quan has said that she needs to make multiple trips to Las Vegas in 2014 to solidify the plans on this construction project and stay at several Las Vegas luxury hotels for market research.