Luxury hotel developer Steve Wynn is known to move heaven and earth to make things happen. But he couldn’t convert the Vatican.
Wynn has confirmed the rumor: He not only offered to buy the Guardian Angel Cathedral, across the Desert Inn arterial, but the deal included building a new one.
During the design process for the $2.6 billion Wynn Las Vegas, which opened in April 2005, Wynn envisioned a solution to a parking lot problem. He coveted the church site, which includes offices for the Diocese of Las Vegas, for employee parking.
"I sent someone to Rome. I had Sig Rogich help me on it," Wynn said.
The Vatican abstained, apparently wanting, ahem, nun of it.
It worked for the best, Wynn said. He ended up building a parking garage next to the first of his hotels, which offered closer proximity.
The cathedral, at 302 Cathedral Way, was founded in 1963. It was designed by Paul R. Williams, an acclaimed black architect whose work included the arched signature theme building at Los Angeles International Airport.
He also designed the La Concha Motel. The motel’s lobby was recently moved from the Strip to the Neon Museum.
The land was donated to the church in 1961 by mob associate Moe Dalitz, who ran the Desert Inn and the Stardust and built the Las Vegas Country Club.
At the time, there were no Saturday evening or Sunday afternoon Masses. According to published accounts, a manager at the Stardust and Desert Inn asked that the local diocese offer a 4:30 a.m. Mass for Catholic "graveyard workers."
Williams designed numerous celebrity homes including the current home of famed hotelier Barron Hilton. Williams’ client list included Frank Sinatra and his notorious push-button house, Lucille Ball, Tyrone Power and Danny Thomas.
THE SCENE AND HEARD
Bravo’s ratings-grabbing "Real Housewives of Orange County" led to recent spinoffs in New York and Atlanta. Now there’s buzz that Las Vegas may be following in their Manolo footsteps. The concept: Five women share the spotlight, revealing their daily drama, the Vegas party scene and their ultra-privileged lives.
Steffi Graf and Andre Agassi, along with his father, Mike Agassi, and singer Tony Bennett, at the Stirling Club on Saturday for the Nevada Tennis Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Mike was one of the inductees. … Professional dancer Julianne Hough of "Dancing With The Stars" fame, with her family at Lavo (Palazzo) on Friday night to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday weekend and her sister Marabeth‘s birthday. Julianne attended Las Vegas Academy during her mid-teens. Hough and her boyfriend, Chuck Wicks, stayed in a penthouse at Palms Place. … Actor Corey Feldman, who starred in the hit 1980s films "Stand By Me" and "The Goonies," at Tryst (Wynn) on Friday with wife/Playboy model Susie Sprague Feldman and reality TV star Daisy De La Hoya, runner-up on the hit VH1 show, "Rock of Love 2." Earlier on Friday, they had dinner at Nove Italiano in the Palms Fantasy Tower.
THE PUNCH LINE
"The economy is so bad, the White House turkey turned down the pardon. He says he lost all his money in the stock market and has nothing left to live for." — Jay Leno
Norm Clarke can be reached at 383-0244 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Find additional sightings and more online at www.normclarke.com.