Las Vegas Sands : "Macau is a Mega-Mall"
Buried deep within an article on Digital Media is a short interview with David Sylvester, VP of Retail Development for Las Vegas Sands Corp (LVS) wherein he opines that Macau is a mega-mall (er... MEGAMALL™?).
Mr. Sylvester goes on to explain LVS' retail strategy and mentions that the next shopping mall in Cotai (as part of hotel row?) will be called Cotai Central.
Take it away:
Matching the foot traffic to the retail concept is an essential element of mall planning, says David Sylvester, vice-president of Las Vegas Sands Corp, Retail Development, Asia. His employer is currently building one of Asiaís most ambitious resort/retail ventures, The Cotai Strip, said to be the regionís first experiential mall.
"What we are creating in Macau is really a mega-mall," says Sylvester. "There are five separate malls, each with its own retail niche, all connected by bridges. We are expecting people to come just for shopping trips."
Just... for shopping trips? Not so sure if Sly's comment there is hyperbole or if he's missing the bigger picture.
Each of the five malls is paired with a hotel. The first to open was the Grand Canal Shoppe at Four Seasons. Next will be Cotai Central, to follow next year. The others, as yet unnamed, will be open by 2010.
"The hotels act as a filter," says Sylvester. "If you can afford to stay at the Four Seasons, then you are the customer who will be shopping at Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Gucci, Prada, all those brands."
The degree of luxury of the hotel sets the tone of the stores in the adjacent mall. "We try to mix the malls so they don't compete for the same dollar," says Sylvester. "When you go from one to the other there won't be a lot of sameness. Each will have a different brand line up."
Sylvester's yardstick of measuring luxury repurposed to use dining options means that the Venetian Macao is a Fatburger - large, sickeningly satisfying and burptastically overpriced.