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The Monte Carlo gets a facelift to make room for MGM's park project (Las Vegas Sun)

By Ed Komenda, Las Vegas SunMcClatchy-Tribune Regional News

June 06--Walk past the Monte Carlo's northern plaza entrance, and you'll notice a big change: its face is missing.

Surrounded by a vinyl-covered chain-link fence, construction crews have started dismantling the Monte Carlo's European facade and famed fountain.

The work is part of the first phase of MGM Resorts International's $100 million plan to tidy up the crowded walkway between the Monte Carlo and New York-New York. By early 2014, MGM officials say the pathway will be a tree-dotted plaza with benches, food trucks and shops.

"It's really just a walk-by," Monte Carlo General Manager Patrick Miller said. "It wasn't designed to allow pedestrian traffic to really see the Monte Carlo."

Planners have designed a new pathway to connect the Monte Carlo and New York-New York and lead visitors to a planned 20,000-seat arena slated for a plot of land behind the two resorts. Construction crews currently are in the demolition phase, Miller said.

Once demolition is finished, several new attractions, including a beer garden and Shake Shack burger restaurant, will be built. Replacing the European facade will be a Double Barrel restaurant, owned by SBE Entertainment, and a Sambalatte Coffee House.

The outdoor plaza project, announced in April, smashes the long-held Las Vegas myth that casino operators want to keep visitors inside.

Caesars Entertainment is planning a similar development with the Linq, an outdoor shopping, dining and entertainment promenade anchored by a 550-foot-tall observation wheel between the Flamingo and Quad.


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