Mandarin Oriental is a small luxury hotel chain with fewer than 30 branded hotels worldwide. The hotel brand is planning to grow by 50% over the next few years with hotel projects currently in development. There are six Mandarin Oriental hotels in the U.S. and one in Bermuda and one in Riviera Maya Mexico.
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas is one of three hotels in the MGM/Dubai World $9 billion dollar CityCenter project on the Las Vegas Strip between the Bellagio and Monte Carlo casino resorts. Aria Resort & Casino is the focal point of CityCenter and the only hotel of the three with a casino. Vdara is a mixed-use hotel and residential building located adjacent to the Cosmopolitan, the newest Las Vegas casino resort opened December 15, 2010, although a separate property from the CityCenter complex.
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas opened one year ago in December 2009 with the CityCenter Las Vegas grand opening. Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas at CityCenter is a 539-ft building. The building is 47 stories, with the hotel in the lower 23 floors containing 392 guest rooms and suites.
The 23rd floor is the top Sky Lobby hotel floor at the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas.
The lobby reception desk on the 23rd floor is also the concierge desk on the right end. The lobby is a bright space in day with large windows letting in the Vegas sunny sky and a dimly lit space at night with great views north along the Las Vegas Strip and City Center building lights and sights.
The reception desk, lobby seating, Mandarin Bar and Twist restaurant are located at the Sky Lobby. The 3rd floor holds the hotel conference center wing and the all-day restaurant MOzen.
The hotel ground floor lobby entrance has elevators giving access only to the 3rd floor and 23rd floor Sky Lobby.
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas elevators have a cushioned bench.
Eating and Drinking at the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas
Tea Lounge: The lobby lounge area seating offers a high tea service daily in the afternoon from 2:30 to 5 pm.
MOzen is seemingly Mandarin Oriental zen, although I like the American twist for mo’ zen in a BustaRhymes gimme some mo’ word way to have ‘more zen’ all-day dining restaurant. Prices are high with oatmeal breakfast in double digits and breakfast plate around $30.
Mandarin Bar is currently only open evenings with 5pm to 1am hours or 2am Friday and Saturday. The view from Mandarin Bar is one of the best publicly accessible views in Las Vegas. One drink is worth the cost of admission if a good window seat is available. Think $20 to $30 for each set of drinks for a couple.
I lounged for about an hour in a chair by the picture windows looking out to Planet Hollywood and Paris Las Vegas. Great bar snack crunchies of three varieties including wasabi nuts came with the beer. $12 poorer upon departure. Cool feature for CityCenter hotels is charges for Aria and Vdara bar and dining can be direct billed to Mandarin Oriental hotel bill and same for guests of those hotels.
Twist is evening fine dining on the 23rd floor of Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas. The cuisine is fusion, creative, and around $50 per entrée.
Large Windows on 23rd floor define Mandarin Bar and top of Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas Hotel. Higher floors are Mandarin Oriental residences.
Sky Lobby and Mandarin Bar are left window bank and Twist is right window bank on 23rd floor.
Arrival at Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas
Mandarin Oriental is a luxury hotel with prices in the luxury range for everything except the room rates. Room rates under $200 per night, particularly with a flight inclusive travel package through sites like Expedia and Orbitz make Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas one of the lowest priced Mandarin Oriental hotels in the world.
Parking is valet only and $30 for overnight at the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas. The hotel entrance is on Las Vegas Boulevard just past the City Center entrance. You can save $30 parking fee if you take the CityCenter entrance and self-park at Aria Casino and walk to the Mandarin Oriental hotel.
Aria Resort & Casino has free self-parking and takes a five minute walk to Mandarin Oriental from the Aria self-park garage casino entrance using the outdoor sidewalk in the CityCenter complex.
By the large colorful typewriter eraser art sculpture is a flight of stairs from the sidewalk to the entry level of Mandarin Oriental Hotel. Alternative to the stairs is a sidewalk escalator by the pedestrian overpass and at the bottom of the escalators is the world’s slowest 3-ft. elevator ride from the CityCenter sidewalk down to the Mandarin Oriental driveway.
The Aria garage is at the left side of the Aria Hotel in the background. The Mandarin Oriental is to the left of the pedestrian overpass.
The Lower Lobby
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas has a small ground level lobby with seating area, staff desk and elevators to the 23rd floor main reception desk in the Sky Lobby.
Sky Lobby – 23rd floor Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas
The hotel guest is greeted with this image when the elevator opens to the Sky Lobby.
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas CityScape Room
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas requires two sets of elevators to go from the entrance to guest rooms. A separate set of elevators takes guests from Floor 23 Sky Lobby level down to lower floor guest rooms within the hotel. Key card access is required for hotel elevators to guest rooms.
Hotel guest room floors are 4 through 22. There is no floor 13. Spa, fitness rooms and pools are accessed on Floor 8.
I stayed in room 1124 on the 11th floor booked in a King CityScape room basic room on a higher floor.
Here are my photos of this room with a different orientation in the hotel.
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas PR image for CityScape room differs from my image in that the sliding doors on the bathroom wall panel reveals the robed woman and conceals the glass bath wall from the bedroom when opened.
The TV shows the electronic master controls available for room lighting and entertainment using the TV remote. These are same electronic controls found in Aria Resort with wall switches, TV master remote and a nightstand remote pad.
The nightstand remote pad was not working properly in my Mandarin Oriental room. Actually, the remote may have worked, but the screen was too dim to read icon options. I reported the dim nightstand screen twice and I was told to contact them again if I couldn’t figure out how to make the screen brighter.
Hey, I had already pushed every button on the gadget to no effect. I used the TV remote for my stay. The remote system ran a little more smoothly than at Aria room.
Weirdest thing about the hotel is my hotel room in this building had the distinction of providing the worst access I’ve ever had in the USA to Verizon Wireless. Mandarin Bar was much better than my room.
Internet access at Mandarin Oriental is $18 per day.
In contrast to the high tech room electronics was the old fashioned tub with bath salts for a relaxing soak.
A small TV and vanity mirror are on left side of counter. Aromatic sandalwood soaps are provided. I like the smell. My wife, the soap purist, thinks the Aromatherapy Associates soap makes her skin too dry.
My pictures do not give the room justice. Furnishings were all high quality. The bed was quite comfortable for me and my preferences. Funny thing is I commented on the Aria hotel bed being too soft for me in my Loyalty Traveler review and a highly detailed review I read of the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas complained the bed was too hard.
To each his/her own.
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas 10-minute video walkthrough
HeWhoTravels (Ether on FlyerTalk) has a FlyerTalk post describing the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas in far more detail than I will here. He also posted an excellent January 2010 edited 10-minute YouTube video with musical soundtrack. The video opens with views of CityCenter from the pedestrian bridge and a walk-through of the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas with detailed views of a Premier Room. All the features of the premier room are the same as the CityScape room I stayed except for my lower category room did not have a sink by the toilet and the Premier room video shows an extra chair with footstool and small table.
My initial thought was being thankful I had stayed in Aria Resort the week before this stay since I probably would have been less favorable to Aria if I had stayed in the Mandarin Oriental hotel room first. I always prefer to finish my stay with the top of the line hotel when hotel hopping in a city.
Mandarin Oriental 8th Floor Lap Pools and Spa Tubs
Every staff member at the hotel told me the pools were closed for the winter, except for the guy who actually works at the fitness center in front of the pool doors. He said pool hours were 9am to 5pm.
The pool area was lovely in the 65 degree weather of December. Odd everyone kept saying it was closed.
Spots on the pool deck showed cement bubbling and cracking from the intense desert sun and those 14 hour days of summer heat.
View from Mandarin Oriental room 1124 of hotel’s north lap pool and Aria Resort & Casino in background.
North pool view across CityCenter. Hot tub is located at far end of this pool near patio windows.
Light and Dark
Light plays an important role in the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas experience.
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas Building
The building itself is a beautiful structure designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox. Their KPF.com architectural firm website has several nice photos of the Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas hotel property.
The windows and metal frame reflect a variety of colors as the day evolves.
Mandarin Oriental hotels are outside my normal realm of loyalty travel. The opportunity to stay at the AAA 5-diamond Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas hotel came at an incredible bargain of $12 for one night in a CityScape King room for an Expedia.ca Air + Hotel travel package with airfare included on US Airways from San Francisco to Las Vegas. Here is my Loyalty Traveler November 20, 2010 post on this special 48 hour Expedia Canada opportunity for incredible Las Vegas hotel deals that put me in CityCenter Las Vegas for three nights at the Aria Resort and Mandarin Oriental in December 2010 on two separate trips from California for under $100 all-in, including airfare.
Betting on Expedia.ca for a Vegas Suite Deal (Nov 20, 2010) [This post tells how I bought my flight to Las Vegas and an upgraded room at the Mandarin Oriental for $12.]
CityCenter Las Vegas – Art, Architecture and Space (Dec 16, 2010)
Hotel Detail – Aria Resort and Casino Las Vegas in HD (Dec 11, 2010)
Aria Resort Las Vegas – Pools, Spa and Dining (Dec 12, 2010)
Aria Resort Corner Suite and SkySuites (Dec 18, 2010)
Aria Resort Las Vegas SkyVilla 19 (Dec 19, 2010)
Vdara Hotel, CityCenter Las Vegas (Dec 19, 2010)
Mandarin Oriental Las Vegas (Dec 23, 2010)
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas (Dec 21, 2010) (The Cosmopolitan is next to Vdara Hotel, but not part of CityCenter complex. The Cosmopolitan is a Marriott Autograph Collection Hotel.)