Successful Meetings - April 2008 - (Page 50)

Gaming Meetings Beyond the Flames When the smoke cleared from the fire at the Monte Carlo it revealed something startling—satisfied planners By Michael Goldstein The second floor meetPHOTO COMPOSITE: CHRIS McGAHEY BY AUDREY DEMPSEY, NEIL SCHWARTZ BY MARK HOWLAND AND BACKGROUND BY LANDOV On the morning of January 25, 2008, it was all over television and the Internet: “The Monte Carlo Hotel in Las Vegas is on fire.” But by the end of the day, the story had faded from the headlines. If it bleeds it leads, goes the expression, and the fire in the 32story hotel had been put out and the building evacuated with no casualties. But how the staffs at the Monte Carlo and other properties on the Strip scrambled to make sure the scheduled meetings and events at the hotel went on with as little interruption as possible was truly an untold story—until now. ing space at the Monte Carlo was evacuated as well. “We had quite a few meetings, so we were directing hundreds of people out of conference rooms and ballrooms,” McGahey says. “We had an employee every 20 feet all the way out to the south parking lot. All hands were on deck to help.” Although the 2,000-room hotel was 95-percent occupied, there were no injuries. The guests were moved into the MGM Grand Arena, where they were set up with rooms at other MGM properties, like the MGM, Bellagio, and Treasure Island.” If guests needed something, they could charge it to the Chris McGahey from the Monte Carlo Hotel (left) and Neil SAFETY FIRST room, while groups that Schwartz of the California/Nevada Credit Union Leagues shipped items to the busi“We confirmed there was a ness service center were rooftop fire and began able to get them out from the dock. The bellmen and security evacuating,” said Chris McGahey, vice president of hotel operguards from the Bellagio, Mandalay Bay, MGM, and Luxor ations at the Monte Carlo. “Alarms went off, and we had the came over to help. housekeepers and security banging on every door. They told Even Fletch Brunelle, senior vice president of sales and the guests, ‘Please leave your items. Carrying luggage can marketing for Bellagio, pitched in as a lobby greeter. “I was a slow down the process.’ Staff members helped people down; smiling face, opening the door and helping direct them to some actually carried guests down the stairs and out the stairwhere they needed to go.” In a true Las Vegas moment, wells to the south lot.” 50 APRIL 2008 SUCCESSFUL MEETINGS

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Successful Meetings - April 2008

Successful Meetings - April 2008
Editor's Note
Industry Trends
On the Record
Planner's Spotlight
Technology Talk
Personal Success
Websites of the Month
Food & Beverage
On Site
Professional Development
On Site
Professional Development
Miforum Q&A
Beyond the Flames
Reservation for—21,000
Casino Riches
Entertainment Jackpot
Who Needs a Passport?
The International Swing
Around the World in 18 Holes
Places & Spaces
Puerto Rico
Show Special: Washington DC / Frankfurt, Germany

Successful Meetings - April 2008