Las Vegas betting reputation as party capital on Super Bowl

1 month ago Reuters

PHOENIX, Feb 13 (Reuters) - Las Vegas will put its reputation as the world's party capital on the line next year when the United States's biggest sporting party comes to Sin City with everyone predicting a Super Bowl supernova.

While Las Vegas is no stranger to hosting big events, the bar has been set super high and National Football League commissioner Roger Goodell is not betting against it being a huge success.

"I think I would be making a mistake underestimating anything that happens in Vegas and how big it can be," said Goodell during his state of the league address.

Even before the Kansas City Chiefs' 38-35 win over the Philadelphia Eagles in Sunday's Super Bowl in Glendale, Arizona, plans were already taking shape for next year on the Strip.

Sam Joffray, CEO of the Super Bowl Las Vegas Host Committee told Reuters high expectations come with the territory when you are talking about Las Vegas and because of that they are well aware that they will need to up their game.

The Super Bowl will be held at the $1.9 billion Allegiant Stadium, home of the Las Vegas Raiders, in 2024.

From the selection of the halftime act to more mundane items such as getting people smoothly in and out of the stadium, Las Vegas will be expected to deliver a glitzy Super Bowl that is bigger and better than any before.

"People have high expectations for Vegas on any given weekend," said Joffray. "Vegas has no shortage of experience hosting big events but the Super Bowl - we need to up our game.

"There are things we have in the works right now that I think people will go wow."

Even without the game, Super Bowl weekend is already the second busiest of the year for Las Vegas with more than 300,000 pouring onto the Strip filling casino sportbooks.

A survey by the AGA, a trade group for the U.S. casino industry, showed a record 50.4 million American adults, or about 20% of the population, were expected to bet $16 billion on Sunday's Super Bowl.


Although Joffray hopes Las Vegas will become part of the NFL's unofficial Super Bowl rotation, it will be important not to alienate the regulars who come every year.

"There is no better place to go for Super Bowl than Vegas -- any year," said Joffray. "Super Bowl is already the second biggest weekend next to New Year's Eve.

"So now we're talking about that little bit of bandwidth we have left over and putting the actual Super Bowl in there.

"It will definitely without a doubt be the biggest weekend of 2024."

The Super Bowl may have some competition for biggest weekend honours with Formula One also making its Las Vegas debut a few months earlier in November.

The Super Bowl host committee will be keeping an eye on Formula One's operational plans but Joffray says they are two different things.

"They (F1) are no strangers to putting on big events but an F1 event is totally different than a Super Bowl," he explained. "We're looking at getting it right the first time until we host it again and they're looking at it from an annual perspective."

The NFL's official hospitality partner On Location is already looking into unique things to do to add to the Super Bowl experience, which is now a week-long festival.

In Phoenix events included a sunrise hike up Camelback mountain with former NFL players, golf and concerts.

"We started thinking about Las Vegas 16 months ago. It's a very unique location and it required us to get ahead of it," Brian Wilder, executive vice-president of sports experiences and NFL fan engagement for On Location told Reuters.

"Las Vegas is going to be spectacular."

Reporting by Steve Keating in Phoenix; Editing by Ken Ferris

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
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