Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2009 | 2:05 a.m.
After more than 18 months, the Monte Carlo can finally close the book on its January 2008 fire with the opening of the once water-damaged 32nd floor.
Monte Carlo President Anton Nikodemus said the property saw the fire as an opportunity to revamp and better serve the market.
“With the damage from the fire, we were really able to take the moment and look at what was the room and suite accommodations that were going to fit our customers to a better profile,” Nikodemus said.
Fire Department and OSHA reports concluded that sparks from welding on the roof caused the Jan. 25, 2008, fire on the facade and upper floors of the hotel, but a lawyer for the company involved disputed those reports. The fire did an estimated $80 million damage.
Monte Carlo is treating the 50-unit HOTEL32 as its own entity with limo pickup from the airport for guests as well as a private elevator and check-in and a restaurant exclusively for the floor’s guests.
Nikodemus said suites that contain features such as grand pianos and formal dining room tables for 10 can be overwhelming and not functional. Monte Carlo instead concentrated on the functionality of the common living areas, bathrooms and bedrooms, he said.
Rooms at HOTEL32 come in five styles: The studio suite at 400 square feet, the one-bedroom suite at 700 square feet, the loft suite at 1,200 square feet, the one bedroom penthouse at 1,600 square feet and a two-bedroom penthouse at 2,000 square feet.
Monte Carlo spared no expense in amenities of its new suites. Rooms are designed in a dark brown, white and deep red or lime green color scheme and feature marble floors and bathroom fixtures, bathtubs overlooking the Strip and oversized and pre-stocked mini bars and fridges according to the guest’s preference.
The resort didn’t skimp on technology, either. Rooms feature Blu-ray players, multiple flat-screen, high-definition TVs, televisions embedded in the bathroom mirrors, iPod docking stations and an iPod touch for every hotel guest.
The HOTEL32 iPod touch acts as a digital concierge for guests and Monte Carlo is the first to roll out the technology in Las Vegas.
Guests can make spa, restaurant and entertainment reservations from anywhere on the property. And if a guest prefers to use technology of their own, Monte Carlo can download the application to their own iPod touch or iPhone.
“It really is a tribute to the new consumer and their need for that technology to enhance their experience,” Nikodemus said.
Rates for HOTEL32 suites start at $250 a night for the studio up to $1,200 a night for the two-bedroom penthouse suite.
While damage from the 2008 fire gave Monte Carlo a chance to redesign its top floor, Nikodemus said, the intent was always to rebrand itself before the opening of CityCenter late this year.
A walkway and monorail from Monte Carlo to CityCenter will give guests direct access to the new MGM Mirage property.
“This [HOTEL32] was supposed to be a property where you could have a gateway into CityCenter, a gateway into those types of amenities. It wasn’t necessarily going to be competing with them but so we could draft in behind them for those customers who wanted to be a part of it but in no way wanted to pay the dollars associated with it,” Nikodemus said.
Monte Carlo will be adding a new pub to replace its Brew Pub by this month, as well as a sushi and wine bar by the end of the year, and eight new retail outlets in its Street of Dreams shopping center as part of its rebranding effort. Hotel room renovations throughout Monte Carlo will follow shortly after, Nikodemus said.