Wynn Plaza, a 70,000-square-foot retail and lifestyle expansion set to bow in this year’s fourth quarter at Wynn Las Vegas resort and casino, is 96 percent leased after 15 months. This, according to Crown Acquisitions, which invested $500 million for a 49.9 percent stake in Wynn Las Vegas’ owned and leased retail.
Haim Chera, a principal of Crown, said tenants at Wynn’s existing retail collection at Wynn Las Vegas and Encore Esplanade including Chanel, Dior, Rolex, Cartier, Alexander McQueen, Givenchy and Chopard do sales in excess of $4,000 a square foot. That was a selling point in attracting other luxury labels such as Hermès, Louis Vuitton men’s, Céline, Balmain, Loewe, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta and Stella McCartney, to Wynn Plaza.
The two-level plaza will have a restaurant on each floor that sets the tone for the other tenants. Cipriani, that symbol of Reagan-era extravagance, will be exclusive to Wynn in Las Vegas, and will anchor the main floor. Luxury men’s wear brand Kiton will also occupy a space on the ground floor.
On the second level, Urth Caffé, one of the first eateries to serve organic heirloom coffee when it opened in Manhattan Beach, Calif., will serve as a canteen for Millennial consumers Wynn hopes to lure with Soul Cycle, Cotton Citizen, James Perse, Diptyque, Le Labo, Marie France Van Damme and Vitra Eyewear.
“The second level is the really interesting story,” Chera said. “We’ve created a section on the second floor that’s very California contemporary and casual luxury. The consumer is mixing contemporary lifestyle brands with luxury brands. She wants her favorite coffee or juice or smoothie. Urth will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner.”
Rimowa will also unveil a unit at Wynn Plaza. The brand’s chief executive officer Alexandre Arnault was recently quoted in WWD discussing Rimowa’s stores, which include 150 worldwide and 13 in the U.S. “We have two very big openings planned in the U.S. before the end of the year: Bal Harbour in Miami and the Wynn in Las Vegas. We believe both locations have incredible potential.”
Chera called the expansion “a sunny bright spot in retail today. We got early support from brands like Celine, Balmain, Saint Laurent and Bottega. That launched us in this new section. Wynn Plaza’s success is “shocking for this supposedly weak retail environment. We had to turn away second- and third-choice brands. It became a highly selective process. We’re curating something special at the Wynn. It’s so counter to the retail merchandising plans of the past.”
Wynn Plaza managed to land several first store designs, including one of the inaugural shop designed by Céline creative director Hedi Slimane, and the only permanent Louis Vuitton men’s store in the U.S. “Céline is noteworthy because it’s the first new combined men’s and women’s store,” Chera said.
SoulCycle — Las Vegas’ first — is also expected to be a draw. “Ten million people per year visit Wynn Las Vegas,” Chera said. “They will want to keep their fitness routines. Las Vegas isn’t all playtime and hangovers. There’s a healthier fitness lifestyle out there today. They may actually stay longer if they can keep their fitness routines.”
Las Vegas had 43 million visitors last year, according to the city’s convention and tourist authority.
With 27 out of 29 spaces leased, Chera said Wynn is being “very selective. We’re interested in active athletics. There are higher-end brands. We’re looking for one of the top-tier athletic brands to complement our active assortment.”
While Las Vegas shopping centers are shifting their assortments by beefing up beauty, personal services, electronics and technology, the retail collections of each high-end resort and casino on the Strip features different permutations of the same names. At Bellagio, for example, there’s Chanel, Dior, Gucci and Fendi; the Crystals at CityCenter, Dior, Fendi Gucci and Dolce & Gabbana, and the Forum Shops at Caesar’s Palace, Gucci, Fendi, Chanel fragrance, beauty, and sunglasses, and Dior beauty.
“We think there’s going to be a contraction in number of locations luxury retailers operate, but a flight to quality,” Chera said. “It will be a mirror of the larger landscape. People just want to be in the A and A+ places.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been updated to reflect that The Shops at Crystals in Las Vegas features Balenciaga, Dior, Christian Louboutin, Dolce & Gabbana, Fendi, Hermès, Ermenegildo Zegna, Louis Vuitton, Tom Ford and Versace, among others. Leasing demand is strong, and Dior and Hermès are in the process of expanding their stores. Overall sales at the center are up 12 percent year-to-date with most tenants up by double-digits over last year, and sales per square foot at the center are high.