M Resort Spa Casino, which opened in March 2009 on the far south end of Las Vegas Boulevard, quickly made its mark as a hip destination for locals and tourists from Southern California and elsewhere.

Hip design and great views are hallmarks of M Resort hotel rooms

A gleaming M Resort Spa Casino beckons as the first resort hotel Southern California freeway travelers see as they stream into the Las Vegas Valley.

The striking $1 billion hotel sits 400 feet in elevation, offering guests world-class views of the Las Vegas Strip. Once they venture inside they are welcomed with a contemporary architectural style incorporating natural lighting and a rich, warm color palette of natural materials.

Cutting-edge technology is evident throughout the property, which features seamless wireless coverage and mobile devices offering patrons “in-running” wagering on sports events.

More than 70 percent of the 390 rooms and suites offer views of the Strip through floor-to-ceiling windows. Each room offers a Bose Wave sound system, an iPod docking station, a 42-inch HD LCD flat-screen television and a bathroom that’s more like a spa. The casino features 1,900 slot machines and 64 table games, a high-limit salon, a dedicated poker room and a wealth of non-gaming amenities: nine restaurants, five bars, convention and meeting space, a spa, a 100,000-square-foot entertainment and pool area, even a pharmacy.

One of M Resort's crowning jewels - the luxurious pool and entertainment complex



M Resort opened in March 2009 as the country was coming to terms with just how bad the recession really was. Not the most opportune time to open an upscale casino designed to attract a hybrid crowd of locals and free-spending Southern Californians. But CEO Anthony Marnell III, son of Tony Marnell, the famed builder and casino designer who founded the Rio, pulled out all the stops to introduce his gem on Las Vegas Boulevard South, including sending a lightship around the valley and into Southern California to generate buzz for the opening. As a result, the property now has a data base of more than 400,000 names and continues to work hard at customer loyalty and retention.

For Marnell, what differentiates M Resort is its commitment to personal service.

“I look at every time a customer comes in here as a special occasion,” he says.

And to make that commitment a reality the property has invested heavily in employee training. “We hear it all the time,” Marnell says, “in customers’ comments and letters: people really respect how they’re treated here, the way they’re talked to, the way they’re greeted.”

That focus appears to be paying off. M Resort has earned a prestigious Forbes Travel Guide Four Star Hotel rating for 2010.

M Resort's Studio B Buffet features a live show kitchen


“We have a product here that we feel has value,” Marnell says. “We are able to find people who want it and are willing to pay a fair price for it and who want to become repeat loyal customers.”

M Resort’s dining options are an important part of that value equation. They include Studio B Show Kitchen Buffet; the Red Cup Cafe; Baby Cakes bakery; Piazza Grille, a Mediterranean-style cafe; Vig Deli; Marinelli’s Authentic Italian Dishes (featuring recipes from the Marnell family recipe book); Terzetto, a steak and seafood restaurant; sushi and sashimi bar Restaurant Veloce Cibo & Bar Veloce; and the Hostile Grape Wine Cellar, where guests can sample more than 120 types of wine.

Patrons are packing the Studio B, a buffet with a live-action cooking studio featuring chef Tina Martini. “It’s working quite well, gaining a lot of steam,” Marnell says.

Inrunning betting sets M Resort's Race & Sports Book apart from many in Las Vegas



The Race and Sports Book also sets M Resort apart. Operated in partnership with Cantor Gaming, the sports book allows players to wager on various aspects of sporting events while they are occurring.

“I think that’s gone really well,” Marnell says. “It’s a whole new way of gambling.”

In all, he feels good about the year ahead, and for good reason.

“It’s getting better and better every month for us.”


â-  Opened March 1, 2009

â-  Located on 90 acres at the far south end of Las Vegas Boulevard in Henderson, Nev.

â-  390 hotel rooms, including 351 “resort rooms” at 550 square feet, and 39 suites ranging from 1,440 to 2,400 square feet

â-  More than 92,000 square feet of casino space, featuring more than 1,900 slot machines, 64 table games, high-limit area, live poker room, poolside gaming and race and sports book operated by Cantor Gaming

â-  More than 60,000 square feet of convention and meeting space, including a 17,400-square-foot ballroom, multiple reception areas and business center

â-   Dining outlets include nine restaurants and five destination bars

â-  23,000-square-foot spa includes 16 treatment rooms, sauna, steam and Jacuzzi wet areas, fitness center, salon and hair stylists

â-  Villaggio del Sole Pool and Entertainment Piazza encompasses 100,000 square feet of recreational space