Strip venue revival

Fontainebleau Las Vegas to open Q4 2023 after 15 years stalled, construction underway

The current developers, Fontainebleau Development and partners Koch Real Estate Investments, held a “commencement ceremony" on Tuesday morning.
United States
Reading time 3:09 min
Current developers Fontainebleau Development and partners Koch Real Estate Investments held a commencement ceremony on Tuesday with Nevada Gov. and other state officials. Construction is already underway in an effort to bring full circle to the project, which has been more than a decade in the making. The 67-story vertically integrated luxury resort and casino, former Drew Las Vegas, is about 75% complete and will open in late 2023.

Long-stalled north Strip resort Fontainebleau is now set to open in the fourth quarter of 2023, according to Fontainebleau Development, Florida developer Jeffrey Soffer’s firm. It will be a 67-story vertically integrated luxury resort and casino.

Construction is already underway at 2777 S. Las Vegas Blvd. The venue has changed its name, and will now open as Fontainebleau Las Vegas, to commemorate the Fontainebleau brand expanding to the gambling mecca. The announcement brings full circle the project that has been a decade-and-a-half in the making.

The project is about “75% complete,” according to a press statement. Fontainebleau Development acquired the property, along with partner Koch Real Estate Investments, earlier this year, in February. Upon opening, Fontainebleau Development will be the sole hotel operator.

The property, which spans 25 acres and approximately nine million square feet, is located on the north end of the Las Vegas Strip, directly adjacent to the Las Vegas Convention Center and the Las Vegas Global Business District.

Construction will be completed by Las Vegas builder Richardson Construction. The company is set to announce additional design and development partners in the coming months. Once finalized, the venue will feature more than 3,700 hotel rooms, more than 550,000 square feet of convention space, a collection of restaurants and shops, pool and nightlife options, and more.

“The building is in mint condition, and we have already commenced construction,” said Fontainebleau Development Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Soffer. “We are excited to make this dream a reality.”

The announcement of a completion date comes after the recent departure of Marriott International, a former development partner which had been part of the project since early 2018. In October, the hotel chain said it had reached “an amicable settlement” with the property’s owner.

Plans for the resort were first unveiled by Soffer’s firm in May 2005, breaking ground in 2007. Construction would soon tumble amid the real estate market collapse. In 2009, the unfinished resort went bankrupt. Magnate Carl Icahn bought the property in 2010, for about $150 million, only to sell it seven years later for $600 million to Steve Witkoff and real estate firm New Valley.

A new name, Drew Las Vegas, was unveiled in early 2018 by Witkoff and Marriott, only for development to be suspended once again in 2020, amid the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. In February, Soffer’s firm acquired back the project it unveiled more than a decade ago.

“We are grateful to have the opportunity to finish what we started and finally introduce the iconic Fontainebleau brand into one of the world’s largest hospitality destinations,” stated Soffer. “We have been extremely selective when it comes to expanding our brand. Las Vegas has always been our number one choice.”

As the Vegas tourism industry rebounds, proving its resilience, Fontainebleau Development expects the upcoming venue to be a success and welcomed addition to the Strip. 

“We believe our target opening date allows us to perfect our vision while positioning Fontainebleau Las Vegas for success in a new era of growth and visitation,” said Fontainebleau Development President Brett Mufson. “This represents not only an investment in real estate, but also an investment in the community.”

Fontainebleau Las Vegas commencement ceremony

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