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The Fontainebleau Las Vegas resort is finally opening in December, and it's been 23 years in the making.
As reported by Bloomberg, real estate mogul Jeffrey Soffer will open the doors of the $3.7 billion hotel and casino on Dec. 13. It features seven pools, 36 restaurants and bars, and a private club on the top floor, some of which are being handled through a strategic partnership with David Grutman's Groot Hospitality. The famed restaurateur and entrepreneur will be bringing two of his restaurants, Komodo and Papi Steak, to the massive resort.
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The 67-story property has been in the works since Soffer purchased the land all the way back in 2000. “It’s one of the great, crazy stories in real estate,” Soffer, 55, told Bloomberg. "There’s always one crazy one in your career. This is definitely it.”
Construction on the Fontainebleau began in February 2007, but Soffer lost ownership due to financial problems during the 2008-2009 financial crisis. Two different owners purchased the project shortly after, before Soffer regained ownership when he bought it back in 2021 when it still wasn't finished. The project went through a total of 16 years of development and construction.
“It could be a very good book or movie,” Soffer told The Hollywood Reporter of how the resort finally got finished. The project sat unfinished, at around 70 percent complete, for 12 years. “You could be the best businessman in the world but if you don’t have good timing," added Soffer, who noted that in the end "everything just sort of lined up."
Now finished, the resort will open its doors in just months. Alongside the previously listed and expected attractions, the lobby features a statue by Swiss artist Urs Fischer, while Dave Grutmam will be importing some of his Miami spots like LIV night club and Papi Steak.
Grutman almost wasn't on-board, because he was talking with another Las Vegas resort before Soffer called him up. “He said, ‘do not sign this deal. I’m going to get the Fontainebleau Las Vegas back. I’m going to need you,” added Grutman, who worked on the original Fontainebleau plans 16 years ago. "[Soffer] was the man that gave me my chance. My first bartending job was at his father’s restaurant in his mall. When I went to open my first nightclub, he made me his partner in 2008 at LIV. He gave me a platform to do what I do. There’s only one guy in the world that could make me not sign that deal and it was Jeff Soffer.”