SLS Taking Over W Hotel Tower
Marriott International’s W Hotels brand will disappear from the Las Vegas Strip following an announcement last week that SLS Las Vegas Hotel & Casino has taken over the 289-room W Las Vegas, which currently occupies one of its three towers.
The change is part of a $100 million makeover the SLS is undergoing since Meruelo Group, a private California-based holding company that owns the Grand Sierra casino hotel in Reno, closed on its purchase of the struggling 1,600-room SLS earlier this year.
Meruelo also is taking over SLS’s reservations system from Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, which means the SLS will discontinue its membership as a Starwood Tribute Portfolio Hotel & Resort. SLS said, however, that existing W reservations will be honored.
“Gaining full operational control of the resort is an exciting step in achieving the vision (founder Alex) Meruelo has for this property,” SLS General Manager Scott Hobson said.
The SLS opened at the site of the shuttered Sahara Hotel and Casino in 2014 as a joint venture between Stockbridge Capital Partners and Los Angeles-based nightclub and hospitality mogul Sam Nazarian’s SBE Entertainment Group. They plowed than $400 million into the property to transform it into a hotspot for jet-setting millennials, but the vision was hampered, in no small part by its remote location at the far north end of the Strip, and the crowds never materialized.
SBE sold its interest shortly after the resort’s debut when Nazarian ran into licensing problems with Nevada gaming regulators. Stockbridge sold the SLS to Meruelo last May.