Las Vegas tourism indicators end 2015 on a high note

The tourism industry finished 2015 strong with visitation indicators finishing ahead of 2014 in nearly every category.

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority ended suspense earlier in the month by announcing that visitor volume shattered the previous year’s record total. The only question that remained was whether other indicators also would be better.

They were.

With 3.2 million people visiting Las Vegas in December, the city completed the year with 42.3 million tourists, a 2.9 percent increase over 2014, authority officials announced Friday.

The city completed the year with an 87.7 percent occupancy rate, 1 percentage point better than in 2014, an average daily room rate of $119.94, 3.2 percent ahead of last year, and revenue per available room of $105.21, 4.4 percent better than in 2014.

Convention attendance of 5.9 million in 2015 was 13.4 percent ahead of 2014’s total despite there being 3.6 percent fewer conventions and meetings staged, a total of 21,306 for the year.

The total number of conventions and meetings was the only category that didn’t exceed 2014’s total.

Convention attendance increased for the fifth straight year, but it didn’t top the all-time record of 6.3 million convenioneers in 2006.

The 2015 convention numbers were bolstered by a huge December increase. The LVCVA reported convention attendance of 234,668 for the month, 47.5 percent ahead of December 2014. Authority officials said the big increase was due to shows rotating into December from other destinations. Among the shows appearing in the city was Power-Gen International, an international conference on power generation.

There were 1,535 conventions and meetings in December, 38.5 percent more than the previous year.

Citywide occupancy also didn’t approach the record level of 90.4 percent, achieved in 1997 and 2006. But there was a big difference between those years and now — the city now has 149,213 hotel rooms to fill compared with 99,072 in 1997 and 132,947 in 2006.

The average daily room rate of $132.09 in 2007 was the highest on record.

The city’s transportation resources were busier in 2015 than a year before.

Earlier this week, McCarran International Airport reported an 8.9 percent increase in passengers in December boosting the annual total to 45.4 million, 5.8 percent more than in 2014.

Auto traffic also was strong with an average 44,149 cars a day, 5 percent more than the previous year, on Interstate 15 at the California-Nevada state line and 109,204 per day, 6.3 percent more than in 2014, on all major highways leading to Las Vegas.

Highway traffic counts are recorded by the Nevada Department of Transportation and include local travelers using the roads as well as tourists coming to the city.

Laughlin, which also is monitored by the LVCVA, didn’t fare as well as Las Vegas, posting visitor volume of 1.9 million for the year, a 5.1 percent decline from 2014. Competition from Southern California’s tribal casinos is cited as the reason for the decline.

Laughlin’s average daily room rate was up 3.1 percent to $45.48 for the year and occupancy was at 61.4 percent, 0.7 percentage points ahead of 2014.

Mesquite did better, showing visitor volume of 1.2 million. 4.1 percent ahead of the previous year with the average daily room rate up 3.7 percent to $55.61 for the year and occupancy up 2 percentage points to 74.3 percent.

Contact reporter Richard N. Velotta at or 702-477-3893. Find @RickVelotta on Twitter.

President Trump’s tariffs could raise costs for real estate developers, analysts say
President Donald Trump made his fortune in real estate, but by slapping tariffs on imports from close allies, developers in Las Vegas and other cities could get hit hard.
Las Vegas business and tariffs
Barry Yost, co-owner of Precision Tube Laser, LLC, places a metal pipe into the TruLaser Tube 5000 laser cutting machine on Wednesday, June 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Nevada Film Office Connects Businesses To Producers
The director of the Nevada Film Office discusses its revamped locations database and how it will affect local businesses. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Opendoor isn't the typical house flipping company
Unlike most house flippers, the company aims to make money from transaction costs rather than from selling homes for more than their purchase price.
The Venetian gondoliers sing Italian songs
Gondolier Marciano sings a the classic Italian song "Volare" as he leads guests through the canals of The Venetian in Las Vegas. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Building In Logandale
Texas homebuilder D.R. Horton bought 43 lots in rural Logandale. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Indoor farming in Southern Nevada
Experts discuss Nevada's indoor farming industry. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former Fontainebleau could have become a Waldorf Astoria
Months after developer Steve Witkoff bought the Fontainebleau last summer, he unveiled plans to turn the mothballed hotel into a Marriott-managed resort called The Drew. But if Richard “Boz” Bosworth’s plans didn’t fall through, the north Las Vegas Strip tower could have become a Waldorf Astoria with several floors of timeshare units. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
LVCVA CEO Rossi Ralenkotter announces plans to retire
Rossi Ralenkotter, CEO of the LVCVA, on Tuesday confirmed a Las Vegas Review-Journal report that he is preparing to retire. Richard N. Velotta/ Las Vegas Review-Journal
Cousins Maine Lobster to open inside 2 Las Vegas Smith’s stores
Cousins Maine Lobster food truck company will open inside Las Vegas’ two newest Smith’s at Skye Canyon Park Drive and U.S. Highway 95, and at Warm Springs Road and Durango Drive. Cousins currently sells outside some Las Vegas Smith’s stores and at Fremont Street and Las Vegas Boulevard. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas home prices to continue to rise, expert says
Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the National Association of Realtors, gives homebuyers a pulse on the Las Vegas housing market. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
NV Energy announces clean energy investment
The company is planning to add six solar projects in Nevada, along with the state's first major battery energy storage capacity. Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal
3 Mario Batali restaurants on Las Vegas Strip to close
Days after new sexual misconduct allegations were made against celebrity chef Mario Batali, his company announced Friday that it will close its three Las Vegas restaurants July 27. Employees of Carnevino Italian Steakhouse, B&B Ristorante and Otto Enoteca e Pizzeria, all located in The Venetian and Palazzo resorts, were informed of the decision Friday morning. Bastianich is scheduled to visit the restaurants Friday to speak to employees about the next two months of operation as well as how the company plans to help them transition to new positions.
Nevada has its first cybersecurity apprenticeship program
The Learning Center education company in Las Vegas has launched the first apprenticeship program for cybersecurity in Nevada. It was approved by the State Apprenticeship Council on May 15. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas union members voting to authorize the right to strike
Thousands of Las Vegas union members voting Tuesday morning to authorize the right to strike. A “yes” vote would give the union negotiating committee the power to call a strike anytime after June 1 at the resorts that fail to reach an agreement. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Small businesses struggle to find qualified candidates
A 2018 survey found that over two-thirds of small businesses in Nevada find it somewhat to very difficult to recruit qualified candidates. Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Nevada secretary of state website offers little protection against fraudulent business filings
Property developer Andy Pham tells how control of his business was easily seized by another person using the secretary of state website.
Caesars may be going solo in its marijuana policy
Several Southern Nevada casino companies aren’t following Caesars Entertainment’s lead on marijuana testing.
How much is the Lucky Dragon worth?
Less than a year-and-a-half after it opened, the Lucky Dragon was in bankruptcy.
Gyms and discount stores take over empty retail spaces
Grocery stores used to draw people to shopping centers. But many large retail spaces have been vacant since 2008. Discount stores like goodwill and gyms like EOS Fitness are filling those empty spaces, and helping to draw shoppers back in. K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Funding source of Las Vegas stadium for the Raiders is sound, expert says
The stadium is funded in part by $750 million of room taxes, the biggest such tax subsidy ever for a professional sports stadium. Robert Lang, executive director of Brookings Mountain West and The Lincy Institute at UNLV, says that is a good use of public funds. (Richard Velotta/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas needs light rail, expert says
Robert Lang, executive director of Brookings Mountain West and the Lincy Institute said he is afraid of a "congestion mobility crisis." Las Vegas needs a light rail system, he said, to accommodate the city's growing number of attractions. (Richard Velotta/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Three takeaways from Wynn Resorts' Earnings Call
Matt Maddox came out swinging in his first earnings conference call as Wynn Resorts chief executive officer, boasting of record Las Vegas quarterly revenues and applicants lining up for work.
Star Wars VR Comes to Las Vegas
Sneak peak at the new "Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire" VR experience at the Grand Canal Shoppes.
Elaine Wynn continues her fight to change Wynn Resorts board
Elaine Wynn, the largest shareholder of Wynn Resorts Ltd., is seeking to kick a friend of her ex-husband Steve Wynn off the company’s board of directors. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Zillow is getting into house flipping in Las Vegas
Las Vegas Review-Journal real estate reporter Eli Segall says flipping houses has waned in popularity after the housing bubble burst.
Ellis Island Buys Mt. Charleston Lodge
Ellis Island, which operates a casino, brewery and hotel just off the Strip, purchased the Mt. Charleston Lodge in early April.
Casinos to be penalized for allowing drug-impaired customers to gamble
Nevada Gaming Commission Chairman Tony Alamo talks about an amendment making casinos subject to the same disciplinary standards of preventing people to gamble if impaired by drugs as they are for letting them play while intoxicated by alcohol.
Terrible Herbst to open large travel center in Southern Nevada
The 50,000-square-foot commercial travel center will include 96 fuel pumps and the third White Castle restaurant in Southern Nevada. Wade Tyler Millward reports.
Art Bell’s Top 10 Shows
A selection of radio host Art Bell’s most popular shows.
News Headlines
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like