LAS VEGAS (AP) -- The only new resort to open in Las Vegas this year, the Palms hotel-casino thinks a younger, smaller approach will mean success in a tough tourist economy.
"I wanted something different, but very comfortable," said George Maloof Jr., the resort's president and developer. The former owner of the Fiesta hotel-casino was pointing out the large booths in the Asian restaurant modeled after the famous Buddha Bar in Paris.
With the help of the architect who designed the upscale Bellagio hotel-casino, the Palms incorporates a variety of woods and water effects to create a chic atmosphere of comfort, Maloof said.
Think Hard Rock meets Mandalay Bay -- two trendy Las Vegas resorts that cater more to the young, affluent club-hopping set than the bingo-and-buffet crowd.
The 455-room, $265 million resort is just west of the Las Vegas Strip, across from the Rio hotel-casino.
The boutique hotel is small by Las Vegas resort standards. The newest Strip megaresort, the Aladdin, has 2,567 hotel rooms.
Industry experts, however, say the Palms' size is a positive considering the economic and tourism slowdowns since Sept. 11 that have left an estimated 15,000 Las Vegas Strip workers unemployed.
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