Fifteen resorts along the Las Vegas Strip will close temporarily, effective Tuesday, as the impact of the coronavirus on daily life significantly expands.
Wynn-Encore and MGM Resorts International announced Sunday and the Venetian, which includes the Palazzo, announced Tuesday that all of their Vegas properties would shut down as travel to the gambling and entertainment city declines. Numerous conventions have canceled their upcoming events, and many big-name shows, including Cirque du Soleil, David Copperfield and others have canceled upcoming performances.
“It is now apparent that this is a public health crisis that requires major collective action if we are to slow its progression,” Jim Murren, MGM’s chairman and chief executive said in a statement posted on the company’s investor relations website. “This is a time of uncertainty across our country and the globe, and we must all do our part to curtail the spread of this virus.”
MGM properties Aria, Bellagio, Delano, Excalibur, Luxor, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, Mirage, New York-New York, NoMad, Park MGM, Signature at MGM Grand and Vdara will reopen “as soon as it safe to do so.” No time frame was suggested.
Wynn-Encore said its sister properties will close at 6 p.m. Tuesday. In a news release, the company said the shutdown was “expected to be in effect for two weeks, after which time the company will evaluate the situation.”
Wynn-Encore said the closure was “part of its continuing effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus),” and added that all full-time employees would continue to be paid.
MGM Resorts said it would continue to “support” its workers, but did not specifically say whether they would receive paychecks during the shutdown.
Caesars Entertainment announced Monday afternoon that its 10 Las Vegas resorts all will remain open, but that guests can expect to see some changes through at least April 9.
“Casino floors are still active and select restaurants, bars, pools and shopping remain open,” a statement released Monday said. It added that “social distancing” techniques would be used to keep large groups of people from congregating. All buffets have been shut down and all entertainment venues remain closed.
The Venetian, which includes the Palazzo, said Sunday evening it planned to stay open. “Our property remains open and we will continue taking the recommended precautions necessary to keep our team members and guests safe,” it said in a statement.
The closures are unprecedented. After 9/11 and during the Great Recession of the late 2000s and early 2010s, when travel to Las Vegas sharply declined, resorts remained open.