Las Vegas certainly has its share of big wheels. There are, of course, Steve Wynn and Sheldon Adelson, both big casino moguls and both very, very wealthy men who are also known to have their differences. There are big wheels in entertainment, too, some of whom have (or had, who can keep up?) long running contracts to perform here: Celine Dion, Elton John, Bette Midler, Terry Fator, and many, many more.
Then there are the big whales: big gamblers who risk millions in the casinos here… Every now and then we get stories about a big whale who sues the casino because, he claims, they plied him with drinks and drugs and made him lose all that money; or conversely, about a casino who sues a big whale because he welched on payment. But that’s just part of the deal here in the gambling mecca of the USA.
SkyVue towers under construction
But now there’s a different kind of Big Wheel coming to town. Two, maybe even three, Big Wheels are planned. Two of them are already under construction. The picture here is the construction site of the SkyVue wheel, across the Strip from the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. When — or if — it is completed, this wheel will be the third highest observation wheel in the world. It promises spectacular views of the Strip from the enclosed cars on the wheel.
Another Big Wheel that is planned is the High Roller., which is being built between the Quad and the Flamingo on the Strip. This one will be the highest in the world, so they say. It of course will also provide spectacular views of the Strip. It will also have more and larger cars on the wheel itself, holding up to 40 people each. According to most sources, this one is the most likely to be finished in the foreseeable future.
Finally there is yet another Big Wheel planned for Las Vegas, across the street from the Atria Hotel (part of City Center). It will be part of a “London-themed thrill park”. There is even more skepticism that this one will be built, but apparently the initial plans have been approved by the Clark County Commission.
I don’t know about the financing ins and outs, or whether Las Vegas can really sustain not one, not two, but three giant observation wheels. But I can hardly wait for at least one of these to be completed! I’ll wait a few days to make sure any kinks are ironed out before venturing onto whatever Big Wheel gets here first, but after that I’ll be up there with my camera so I can share the views with y’all!
P.S.: Did I mention that one of my very favorite things about Las Vegas is the constant construction? Oh, sure, it can be an eyesore; and it certainly kicks up the dust. But I just love big heavy equipment, and seeing how these big projects look from the very beginning. Las Vegas is known for building things, and perhaps even more for tearing things down. Sentimental we’re not. (RIP Stardust!) But even for Las Vegas, the Harmon Tower will be a short-lived building. In spite of its being highly photogenic, it was never occupied, and is slated to be torn down due to structural defects. Oh well. Viva Las Vegas!
Commentary about the three planned wheels from VegasChatter.com:
More on Steve Wynn vs. Sheldon Adelson:
Discussion of their approaches, financial info (mostly re: Wynn):
Gossip about their rivalry from 2011:
A more critical — and more political — look at their differences:
Well, until next time,
Good luck to ya!