ARIA Resort & Casino, Las Vegas, Takes Flight

ARIA Resort & Casino

The “Take Flight” lobby concept at the ARIA Resort & Casino, Las Vegas, was inspired by the changing seasons. More than 100 hours of designing went into the installation, with 35 artists from the ARIA and MGM Resorts Events Production team working on the project in a collaborative, creative way, resulting in the project’s seamlessness execution. The lobby’s already existing flexibility lends itself to supporting an installation like “Take Flight.” Marti Winer, vice president of event productions for MGM Resorts, says, “From a logistics perspective, we always use the defining structural characteristics as our jumping off point and then design around that so we know the finished product will blend well with the space.” Many elements of the lobby impacted the overall display, like the space’s glass ceiling. Las Vegas is a vibrant, bustling city, with guests constantly rotating in and out of its hotels; the glass ceiling imparts to the ribbon-clad sky of the installation, allowing guests to get a visual both day and night. “Take Flight” features 22 hot air balloons, with the tallest spanning 15 feet. Over 1,000 kalanchoe flowers span the lobby in shades of red, yellow, pink, and orange to bring vivacity to the installation. In addition, “Take Flight” alsohas 12 other elements, including an umbrella with rain boots, a floral delivery truck, and a sunflower-filled pot. Winer adds that the installation “was inspired by the coming of Spring and the idea that the change of season brings an uplifting renewal to the soul, especially after such a long and challenging winter for everyone.”

1Sky Light

Partnered with the already existing glass ceiling, the 4,000 feet of Jubilee Satin fabric creates a sky with the design. With the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas, guests can enjoy the installation morning and night. Wineradds, “It also allowed us to add an additional layer of whimsy to the execution with graduated waves of blue evoking not just the sky, but the ocean.”

2Unanticipated Art

Winer says the balloons focus on bringing the outside in. “However, given ARIA’s modern and sleek aesthetic, we also knew we couldn’t do a typical or expected interpretation of a hot air balloon. We focused on balancing whimsy with structure, as well as pops of bright color with those more naturally occurring in the lobby.”

3Somewhat Satire

Winer says there are two ways guests are meant to view the birds. The first is “the sensation of being in motion as they literally pull the installation and its observers into the spring season.” And the second is “a light-hearted attempt at irony,” with the balloons being weighted by the birds’ nests to “include a literal bird’s eye view.”

4Grounded Greenery

“The trees and flowers were brought in not only to complement the concept but also to align with the ARIA Horticulture team’s high standards that you see throughout the hotel every day,” Winer adds. “Guests looking closely at the design will find small nests with baby bird families throughout the Ficus trees, hoping to create surprise and delight.”

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Robin McLaughlin is digital editor of LODGING.