Caesars Entertainment Breaks Ground on CAESARS FORUM Las Vegas Conference Center

July 19, 2018

On July 16, Caesars Entertainment Corporation broke ground on its newest development: the CAESARS FORUM Las Vegas conference center. Slated to open in 2020, it will feature 550,000 square feet of flexible meeting, event and convention space.

As the emcee for the ground-breaking ceremony, Roger Dow, president and CEO of U.S. Travel Association and long-time meetings industry veteran, spoke about how when he was first starting in the industry, the meetings market was an afterthought for Las Vegas. Forty years later, the city is now the leading destination for meetings within the U.S.   

Although there is already a large number of meeting and convention spaces in Las Vegas, the Caesars Entertainment team said they believe there is room for more — and that CAESARS FORUM has some key differentiators that will put it at the head of the list for large events. 

The venue will feature the two largest pillarless ballrooms in the world at 110,000 sq. ft. apiece; two 40,000 sq. ft. ballrooms, more than 100 breakout rooms and FORUM Plaza, which will be the first 100,000 sq. ft. dedicated outdoor meeting and event space in Las Vegas. All ballrooms will be divisible into sections so planners will have a multitude of configuration options. 

The single-level property will easily be able to host groups of 10,000 or more attendees and with two easily accessible loading docks, items of almost any size. 

The venue has been designed with the customer in mind, with an infrastructure that will support catering and convention services as well as advances in technology. Sustainability was also an important factor in design: CAESARS FORUM has already been awarded LEED Silver certification.

During the ceremony, Mark Frissora, president and CEO of Caesars Entertainment, talked about the importance of meetings and events and the organization’s commitment to the industry. 

“This business enables organizations small and large, for profit and not for profit, public and private sector, to bring together employees, members and other stakeholders to help realize their most important objectives,” said Frissora. 

It’s an industry in which the brand is already a known leader, with 2.1 million sq. ft. of meeting space at 40 properties across the U.S. More than 17,000 meetings and events are hosted annually at Caesars Entertainment properties, with more than 1.9 million participants nationwide. 

And yet, there is still plenty of room for growth. Last month, the company broke ground on a new conference center at Harrah's Cherokee in Cherokee, North Carolina, while in the spring, Caesars announced plans to bring the brand to two hotels in Dubai and to the Puerto Los Cabos region in Mexico. 

At the CAESARS FORUM ground-breaking ceremony, a new 360-degree “fly-through” video was unveiled that showed the impressive vision for the property and what the guest experience will look like. 

 “In the center of the Las Vegas Strip with direct access to three of our premier resorts and freshly redesigned hotel rooms, CAESARS FORUM builds on our strategy to invest in infrastructure that enhances long-term value for our guests," Frissora said.

CAESARS FORUM will be located on the famous Las Vegas Strip, adjacent to the LINQ Promenade retail district. The conference center will be connected by skybridge to Harrah’s Las Vegas and The LINQ Hotel and Casino, and by pedestrian bridge to the Flamingo Las Vegas, for a total of 5,000 Caesars Entertainment hotel rooms. An additional 15,000 hotel rooms owned by Caesars are within walking distance. 

The venue has already contracted $70 million in business, according to Michael Massari, chief sales officer for Caesars Entertainment, with more in the pipeline. 

The property is also expected to help the local economy, bringing even more tourism to the city which in turn will open up more job opportunities. The conference center will create 1,000 local construction jobs and more than 450 permanent jobs once it opens, according to Caesars officials.

To learn more about CAESARS FORUM, go HERE.


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Partner Voices
Less than six months ago, Lisa Messina joined the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) as the first-ever chief sales officer after leading the sales team at Caesars Entertainment. A 12-year Las Vegas resident, Messina is a graduate of Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration and serves on MPI International’s board of directors. TSNN had a chance to catch up with this dynamic leader and talk to her about her vision for the new role, current shifts in the trade show industry, creating more diversity and equity within the organization, and advice to future female leaders. Lisa Messina, Chief Sales Officer, LVCVA With Las Vegas becoming The Greatest Arena on EarthTM, what are some of the things you’re most excited about in your role? Our team was at The Big Game’s handoff ceremony earlier this month, and I couldn’t help but think, “We’re going to crush it next year!”  These high-profile events and venues not only drive excitement, but also provide unmatched opportunities for event planners. Allegiant Stadium hosts events from 10 to 65,000 people and offers on-field experiences. Formula 1 Grand Prix will take place in Las Vegas in November, after the year-one F1 race, the four-story paddock building will be available for buyouts and will also offer daily ride-along experiences that will be available for groups. And, of course, the MSG Sphere officially announced that it will open in September, ahead of schedule, with a U2 residency. It’s going to be the most technologically advanced venue as far as lighting, sound, feel, and even scent, and it will be available for buyouts and next-level sponsorships inside and outside. There’s no ceiling to what you can do when you’re doing events in Las Vegas.  Allegiant Stadium As the trade show and convention business returns to the pre-pandemic levels, what shifts are you noticing and how do you think they will impact the industry going forward? Our trade show organizers are very focused on driving customer experience. Most of our organizers are reporting stronger exhibitor numbers and increased numbers of new exhibitors, with trade shows proving to be almost or above 2019 levels. Now our organizers are really doubling down on driving attendance and focusing on the data to provide that individualized, customized experience to help attendees meet their goals and get the best value. Some companies continue to be cautiously optimistic with their organizational spend when it comes to sending attendees, but I think it will continue to improve. As the U.S. Travel Association makes more progress on the U.S. visa situation, we also expect a growing influx of international attendees. What are some innovative ways the LVCVA helps trade show and convention organizers deliver the most value for their events? We focus on customer experience in the same way that trade show organizers are thinking about it. We got rave reviews with the West Hall Expansion of the Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC), so over the next two years, we will be renovating the North and the Central halls, which will include not just the same look and feel, but also the digital experiences that can be leveraged for branding and sponsorship opportunities.  Vegas Loop, the underground transportation system designed by The Boring Company, is also a way we have enhanced the customer experience. Vegas Loop at the LVCC has transported more than 900,000 convention attendees across the campus since its 2021 launch. Last summer, Resorts World and The Boring Company opened the first resort stop at the Resorts World Las Vegas , with plans to expand throughout the resort corridor, including downtown Las Vegas, Allegiant Stadium and Harry Reid International Airport. The LVCVA also purchased the Las Vegas Monorail in 2020, the 3.9-mile-long elevated transportation system that connects eight resorts directly to the convention center campus. This is the only rail system in the world that integrates fares directly into show badges and registration. For trade show organizers, these transportation options mean saving time, money and effort when it comes to moving groups from the hotels to LVCC and around the city. Also, the more we can focus on building the infrastructure around the convention center, the more it supports the customer experience and ultimately supports our trade show organizers. Scheduled to debut in Q4, Fontainebleau Las Vegas will offer 3,700 hotel rooms and 550,000 square feet of meeting and convention space next to LVCC.  What are some of the plans for advancing DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion) within your organization? We’re currently partnering with instead of working with a leading consulting firm, to lay the foundation and create a solid DEI plan and be the leader when it comes to DEI initiatives. The heart of that journey with the consulting firm is also talking to our customers about their strategic approaches to DEI and driving innovation in this space.  What are your favorite ways to recharge? My husband and I have an RV and we’re outdoorsy people. So, while we have over 150,000 world-class hotel rooms and renowned restaurants right outside our doorstep, one of my favorite things to do is get out to Red Rock Canyon, the Valley of Fire, and Lake Mead. Five of the top national parks are within a three-hour drive from Las Vegas, so there’s a lot you can do. We love balancing the energy of Las Vegas with nature, and we’re noticing that a lot of attendees add activities off the Strip when they come here.  Valley of Fire What advice would you give to women following leadership paths in destination marketing? I think it’s about being laser-focused on what you want to accomplish; building a team around you that lifts you and helps you achieve your goals; and being humble and realizing that you do it as a group. No one gets this done alone. Thankfully, there are a lot of women in leadership in this organization, in our customers’ organizations, and in this city that we can be really proud of. We’re a formidable force that is making things happen.   This interview has been edited and condensed. This article is exclusively sponsored by the Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority. For more information, visit HERE.