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Las Vegas Grand Prix ‘a great event,’ but didn’t help The Strat’s bottom line

An executive at The Strat says the hotel took one for the team during the Formula One Las Vegas Grand Prix, taking in far fewer benefits than properties in the mid-Strip, but is hoping to change that dynamic going forward.

“Even though we didn’t participate in what we expected to be the upside, I personally think it was a great event for the city,” Golden Entertainment Chairman and CEO Blake Sartini said during an earnings call Friday. He called F1 a “worldwide event” for the city, especially in how it was packaged for television for the global market.

That exposure didn’t help the bottom line at The Strat, however. Golden Entertainment Chief Financial Officer Charles Protell said The Strat’s November earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization was down $800,000 from November 2022.

Knowing what they know now, Sartini said, executives at The Strat would support F1 again “but going forward, we want to work with them to be more involved in the activities around that week or 10 days. It’s not just a weekend.”

Executives from resorts not within the race’s footprint have formed a co-op to gather ideas on how to better benefit from future races.

Early ideas that came out of those talks include offering single day tickets — which F1 officials have already announced for this year — adjusting the race’s start time and creating dedicated casino areas for easy race access for their guests, Protell said.

“Those are just some of the few things that we shared with the folks at F1 and that we’ve talked about with other operators,” Protell said. “I think there is a general acknowledgement that the event needs to appeal to more than just high-end properties at the center Strip that are connected to the event, to make it a real success for all of Las Vegas.”

The 2024 Las Vegas Grand Prix is scheduled to take place Nov. 21-23 on the same 3.8-mile street circuit, including portions of Las Vegas Boulevard, Koval Lane and Harmon and Sands avenues.

Earlier this week during F1’s parent company Liberty Media’s earnings call, Las Vegas Grand Prix CEO Renee Wilm noted the company is working with resorts to better include them in future races.

“We are also working in partnership with the LVCVA to to actively engage downtown,” Wilm said. “Different types of activations, potentially watch parties, but really to spread this benefit of what was an incredible weekend throughout the entire valley.”

Contact Mick Akers at makers@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2920. Follow @mickakers on X.

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