Nevada to Fully Reopen on June 1

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Nevada to Fully Reopen on June 1

By Rich Luna | Apr 14, 2021

The state of Nevada is expected to fully reopen at 100 percent capacity effective June 1, and some counties in the state could decide to open up a month earlier.

That’s the word from Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak, who announced late Tuesday that he expects every county in the state to be able to fully open by June 1. But all counties in the state gain the authority to make their own decision on May 1, and some counties, including Clark—home to Las Vegas and the epicenter for the meeting and event industry—could decide to move to 100 percent capacity as early as the first of May depending on a range of factors.

This is welcome news for the state, reflective of its efforts in battling the COVID-19 pandemic and the availability of vaccines, including for all hospitality and food service workers. Sisolak said about 25 percent of residents are fully vaccinated and 40 percent over the age of 16 have started the vaccination process.

The news is boost to a much-needed recovery for the meeting and event industry. The city’s first major trade show in more than a year, Informa Markets’ World of Concrete 2021, takes place June 8-10, and will debut the Las Vegas Convention Center’s (LVCC) new West Hall expansion as well as Convention Center Loop, an underground tunnel system that will transport meeting attendees throughout the entire convention center campus in all-electric Tesla vehicles.

Right after that, MPI will take its World Education Congress (WEC) to CAESARS FORUM from June 15-17, the first major event in the 550,000-square-foot conference center. The event will bring an audience of meeting professionals eager to begin rebuilding an industry that has generated US$1.03 trillion in direct spend to the economy.

WEC Vegas, June 15-17, 2021. Make your future.

Sisolak’s announcement was well received at MPI.

“The recent news of Nevada opening is very encouraging for the events and travel industry,” said Annette Gregg, senior vice president, experience for MPI. “With WEC there in June, we are confident in our Duty of Care program combined with these safe opening protocols to produce a safe and engaging experience for our participants. We are thrilled to be one of the first large conferences to be back in Vegas this year.”

Las Vegas has been recognized as the No. 1 trade show destination in the U.S. for 26 consecutive years by Trade Show News Network. Las Vegas welcomed more than 6.6 million business travelers in 2019 and spending by visitors attending conventions directly supported 43,500 jobs, generating more than $11.4 billion in overall economic impact.

All that came to a screeching halt due to the pandemic, but that did not stop Las Vegas from expansions and renovations. In addition to the West Hall expansion, development continued on a number of major projects in 2020 totaling more than 2 million square feet of new meeting space, bringing the citywide total to more than 14 million square feet, with more planned later in 2021. Some of the new additions included CAESARS FORUM, Allegiant Stadium and AREA15, as well as expansions at MGM properties Mandalay Bay, ARIA and Park MGM, including the MGM Grand Conference Center, the Stella Studio at The Venetian Resort and new indoor and outdoor space at Wynn Las Vegas. Two new resorts opened, Circa Resort & Casino and Virgin Hotels Las Vegas, and a third, Resorts World, is scheduled to open this summer.

“The wide availability and rapid administration of vaccines will allow our valued events industry to reconvene with confidence and in its entirety.”

“Southern Nevada’s tourism industry took another important step forward with Gov. Sisolak’s confidence Las Vegas can safely allow full occupancy at all venues starting June 1,” said Steve Hill, president and CEO of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. “The wide availability and rapid administration of vaccines will allow our valued events industry to reconvene with confidence and in its entirety. Las Vegas will continue providing the gold standard for health, wellness and safety precautions for the benefit of its workforce, the community and our visitors.”

The state’s COVID-19 positivity rate on Tuesday was 5.2 percent over a 14-day period, and Sisolak said that while some counties may make the decision to move to 100 percent capacity as early as May 1 when they gain the authority, each county will need to weigh a range of options such as rural or urban settings, community transmission rates in the area and vaccine administration.

He added the state plans to keep mandatory measures in place after the transition, including the statewide mask mandate through the transition. The state will remove the required social distancing mandate as of May 1, an authority that also will transition to the counties.

“We are beyond thrilled that Las Vegas will be fully opened by June 1,” said Chris Flatt, executive vice president of hotel sales for Wynn Las Vegas. “Our city relies so much on the leisure and convention business, so being able to bring meetings and events back is critical for us to recover from the effects of the pandemic. We look forward to welcoming everyone back as we remain intently focused on the safety of our customers and guests.”

Stephanie Glanzer, senior vice president and chief sales officer for MGM Resorts International, also welcomed the latest announcement and is “excited about the return of large-scale entertainment and conventions, which are key to Las Vegas’ recovery. At MGM Resorts, we will continue prioritizing the health and safety of our guests and employees as restrictions are loosened, amenities are expanded and Las Vegas and the economy bounce back.”

Photo: Global Meetings Industry Day event, Las Vegas Convention Center, courtesy Sam Morris, LVCVA/Las Vegas News Bureau



Rich Luna

Rich Luna is Director of Publishing for MPI and Editor-in-chief of The Meeting Professional.