050114 GTR_MGM The Park_300MGM Resorts International has unveiled expanded plans and the first look at programming for The Park, a dynamic open-air, dining and entertainment district taking shape on the west side of The Strip. Meanwhile, MGM and Hakkasan Group also announced the formation of a joint venture hotel management company, to be named MGM Hakkasan Hospitality.

Creating an interactive neighborhood environment, The Park will connect New York?New York and Monte Carlo resorts and the new 20,000?seat world?class Las Vegas arena currently in development by MGM and AEG, according to a company press release. New York?New York and Monte Carlo both are undergoing significant transformations of their Strip?facing experiences into robust plaza environments featuring casual eateries, bars, restaurants and retail destinations that will ultimately lead to The Park.

When it opens in 2016 in conjunction with the arena, The Park will create an immersive outdoor destination spanning more than eight acres. Both New York?New York and Monte Carlo will transform their park?facing facades with a series of unique indoor/outdoor dining and entertainment venues, cultivating a vibrant patio culture that encompasses The Park's landscaped spaces.

To create a harmonious dialogue between resorts, Rue de Monte Carlo, the adjacent street providing access from Las Vegas Boulevard, will be realigned as a gently curving, tree?lined parkway: a grand approach to the new arena. New cobblestone walkways in front of New York?New York and Monte Carlo will lead guests into The Park from both directions and blend seamlessly with the mosaic tile patterns that canvas the space.

"Beautiful public places are highlights of many of the world's finest cities, and Las Vegas shouldn't be the exception,” said Jim Murren, chairman and CEO of MGM Resorts International in a prepared statement. “The Park will be the first of its kind on the Las Vegas Strip and is an embodiment of MGM Resorts' commitment to engaging guests through arts and innovation. To create this picturesque outdoor destination, we are literally taking down the walls and opening the doors at our resorts to develop a unique dining and entertainment district that complements its lush new surroundings."

The Park re?envisions the traditional pedestrian experience in Las Vegas. It will draw passersby from the hustle and bustle of The Strip into an oasis offering unique opportunities to experience Las Vegas outdoors and at one's leisure, only steps from one of the largest urban boulevards in the world. Inspired by the iconic plazas, promenades and squares that have served as important public gathering destinations within the world's great cities throughout history, The Park will offer an array of common spaces for socializing, relaxing, exploring and sampling the surrounding tastes, sights and sounds.

By day, visitors will be able to bask in pockets of sun or enjoy shade beneath mature trees or one of the stunning, tulip like shade structures towering more than 50 feet above. Patio?style seating will encourage an interactive social environment, while seating alcoves tucked into large planters will provide areas for respite. Unique water features, including water walls stretching more than 100 feet in length along the entrance will add unexpected visuals, as will dramatic plantings incorporating a variety of beautiful desert blooms. Exploring The Park, guests will encounter spontaneous live entertainers, such as acoustic guitarists and street performers.

As the sun sets, illuminated elements of The Park's landscaping will create a dramatic setting. The shade structures, a work of art in and of themselves, will emit marvelous LED sequences from high above, captivating guests below. Sounds of live music, clinking glasses and laughter from bordering open?air venues will saturate The Park with energy, giving guests an entirely new way to experience Las Vegas beneath the stars.

Not unlike the small cafes and bistros that spill onto iconic promenades, clusters of casual restaurants and bars with outdoor seating will open each resort to The Park creating a colorful patio ambiance. Ranging from fast?casual to mid?level, each offering will be a unique?to?market, up?and?coming brand such as Shake Shack; Bruxie; Sake Rok; Beer Garden; Robert Mondavi Jr. Wine Experience; Dierks Bentley's Whiskey Row; and Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar.

The design for The Park is a collaborative effort led by MGM Resorts International with master planner Cooper, Robertson & Partners, leading landscape architecture and urban design firm !melk, and Marnell Architecture. Envisioned as the connective tissue between New York?New York and Monte Carlo, The Park's unique design elements include green initiatives, natural landscaping and microclimates.

In other MGM news, the company and Hakkasan Group have formed a joint venture hotel management company, to be named MGM Hakkasan Hospitality.

The strategic alliance will focus on the design, development and management of luxury non-gaming hotels, resorts and residential offerings under the Bellagio, Hakkasan, MGM Grand and SKYLOFTS brands in key international gateway cities and prime resort destinations across the globe. All of the hotel and resort projects currently under development by each group will be contributed to the joint venture, including MGM projects in the Americas, the Middle East, and Asia; and Hakkasan projects in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

The new joint venture will aggressively pursue gateway cities around the world. Early targets will include such international destinations as New York, Beverly Hills and London. Additionally, Hakkasan Group will focus on placing other high-profile dining and nightlife brands into MGM Hakkasan Hospitality hotel and residential developments in order to maximize value from its portfolio of assets.