After all the negativity regarding the economy and unemployment, I thought I would talk about something different today: the future of our incredible city as I see it.
Today, it was announced that for the upcoming Labor Day 2010 weekend, Las Vegas is the top travel destination. More people are coming here than Orlando, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Miami, New York, Chicago, or anywhere else for that matter.
Sure, they will probably spend less than they would have in years past. But isn’t that true of any destination? Aren’t people just being more cautious with their spending regardless of where they go?
Maybe the hotel rates have been cut, and maybe Las Vegas now offers a buffet of buffets for one low price, as one example of where we are. Maybe 2-for-1 show ticket coupons are in every street-corner magazine. But when it all comes down to it, people want to come to Las Vegas. And never, ever, underestimate desire.
Las Vegas has cache. It has international name recognition. I has a sense of energy and excitement, interlaced with endless hope. It offers food, entertainment, gaming and other options like virtually no place on earth. The Las Vegas Strip is unlike anywhere else. I have been to many other gaming meccas, and I can assure you that Atlantic City, or Biloxi, or Reno, even, look nothing like Las Vegas.
People like to have fun, relax, party and alleviate stress. There is no better place to do that than here. The weather is good, the hurricanes and tornados are nonexistent, the earthquakes are rare and the sun shines on and on. Simply put, Las Vegas rocks.
If you are a local who is living and working in Las Vegas, times are really tough, with high unemployment and crime, social services and education budgets being cut, and a general sense of malaise lingering over this town of late. But who among my readers is willing to bet me that this is not going to change?
When the national economy improves and the tourists return in droves, the jobs will once again come on line. Although the hotels, casinos and other businesses have learned to do more with less, eventually it will make sense to add personnel, and unemployment will drop. Las Vegas is known as a service-oriented town, and you can’t provide good service with a skeleton crew of employees. Trust me, folks: the jobs will be back.
And when that happens, Las Vegas will radiate once again.
I want my frequent readers to know that I am extremely bullish on Las Vegas. Currently, we are facing some of the biggest challenges in history. It is going to take some time and some sacrifice, for sure, for things to turn around. I have to write about things as they are, not as I wish for them to be. But soon, restaurants and showrooms will fill once again. More hotels and casinos will be on the horizon. Occupancy rates will rise, and airlines will increase capacity. Things will improve, and mark my word: Las Vegas will strengthen it’s position as one of the world’s great destinations AND places to call home.
I could live anywhere; I have chosen Las Vegas with no regrets whatsoever.