Easily one of the most influential technology events in the world today, the trade show, formerly known as the Consumer Electronics Show, will be making its way back to Las Vegas, Nevada. This year’s event was held in January and had to be conducted virtually. However, the announcement earlier this month has indicated that the four-day event for next year will take place in Nevada once again on the 5th of January 2022. While the return of the show is great news for technology enthusiasts, casino officials remain hopeful that this announcement is an indicator of Southern Nevada’s improving economy.
According to the latest news reports, the CES trade show is scheduled to take place in Nevada next year and will be commencing on the fifth of January. The event has taken place in Las Vegas for the past four decades, with this year’s virtual show being the outlier. In 2020, the CES trade show attracted an impressive total of 180,000 visitors to Las Vegas. For 2022’s show, those who want to experience the show but are not keen on in-person participation can opt for the online option. The Consumer Technology Association, based in Virginia, Arlington, founded the show, which was known for many years as the Consumer Electronics Show. Since the adjustment to the convention’s name has been finalized, the company has implored people not to refer to it by its former name on its official website.
The Senior VP of Sales at the Venetian Resort, Chandra Allison, has stated that the return of iconic events and meetings, such as the CES, to the region is of utmost importance to Nevada’s economy. Conventions are viewed as vital to the occupancy and use of Las Vegas Valley’s hotel venues, especially during slower midweek days. Over the last year, several well-known resorts from the Las Vegas strip were forced to temporarily shutter their establishments during the week as a result of low demand.
Earlier this month, casino floors in Las Vegas began operating at an almost normal 80% capacity in comparison to the 50% that was observed over the last few months. In addition, the social distancing requirements were also adjusted from six to three feet. In its earnings call this month, the COO of MGM Resorts International, Corey Sanders, shared his hopes that hotel rooms and event venues will slowly start to fill up once conventioneers, tourists and local visitors become more comfortable with the relaxed regulations and rules. Sanders also mentioned the CES event during the earnings call by stating that there is a slight chance that 2022 could see occupancies sky-rocket to 90%.
While Las Vegas is known for its gambling culture and phenomenal venues, resorts in the region have been generating more revenue from hotel amenities and conventions than from traditional gambling since the 1990s. This economic shift is apparent by the way the city promotes itself. The region’s Convention and Visitors Authority recently unveiled a telling advertisement. The ad does not feature any footage of gambling machines, tables or casino floors which was the city’s greatest marketing tactic for decades. Tourism officials have also been discussing a West Hall Expansion, to the value of $987,1 million, at the city’s convention centre. In addition to the expansion, there has also been chatter about an underground people-mover which is aimed more at attracting conventioneers than gamblers.
An industry analyst has attributed this undeniable shift to the change in status and tactic to the difference in economic scale. Data suggests that these changes began taking place in the 1980s. This was around the time that publicly listed organizations began to build megaresorts, complete with 3000 available rooms or more. In addition to the sheer size, these venues became luxury resorts that offered patrons spa treatments, gym facilities, indoor pools, shopping centres, restaurants etc. and this made gambling just one of the many amenities to enjoy.
This was depicted perfectly in the 1995 film, Casino, which was directed by Martin Scorsese. The movie showed how the shift had taken place and how casino operators and organizations eventually discovered that attracting conventioneers is a far more lucrative business.