Since Hakkasan Las Vegas opened in April, MGM Grand’s newest EDM playpen has quickly become a force to be reckoned with. If a $100 million construction price tag isn’t mind-numbing enough, the cash artists are making certainly is; Hakkasan signed four of the world’s superstar DJs in a contract package worth north of $65 million. Deadmau5’s own two-year deal is valued at $20 million, his shows earning him $425,000 each. However, the most intriguing feature of Hakkasan isn’t its superstar lineup or it’s opulent five floor venue, it’s the story of revenge that led to its creation.
As the juicy tale goes, a mega-wealthy Middle East billionaire who was a regular high roller at a luxurious Las Vegas nightclub became disgruntled when he was turned down for a specific table that he wanted one night. Feeling disrespected, he told the nightclub that he’d open his own place to teach them a lesson. The unidentified billionaire partnered with nightlife firm Angel Management and gave them an unlimited budget to make Hakkasan the best nightclub in the world.
“The billionaire wanted to ensure that his previous nightclub hangout knew they’d done the wrong thing by him and that they learn a lesson at whatever cost. He will have the best club in the world, and nobody will ever match it. He wants the world’s top, best DJs, and he’s got them in contracts to ensure nobody else can have them.”
Source: Las Vegas Sun
So with all the money and talk behind Vegas’s new nightlife hotspot, LessThan3 went to check out Hakkasan firsthand as they kicked off EDC Week 2013 with Dada Life. And we can honestly say that Hakkasan lives up to the hype.
After a short stroll through MGM Grand, we were greeted at the Hakkasan entrance by friendly doormen–a refreshing change. At a majority of Vegas venues, it’s not uncommon to be treated like livestock as you and your friends wait hours to get inside. Not so at Hakkasan; the door staff made patrons feel genuinely welcome. While a majority of the crowd wore the typical Vegas nightclub attire, Hakkasan welcomed those who dressed up in rave outfits or wore banana suits. After a short wait at the door and a ride up an elevator, we found ourselves inside Hakkasan’s main room, which can only be described as decadent.
A monstrous LED screen is mounted behind the DJ booth, which itself sits on a balcony overlooking the crowd. The ceiling is a web of LED lights, the walls covered in blue leather, the couches wrapped in bronze leather. The dancefloor slopes up and away from the DJ booth, so no matter where you are in the main room, you’ll always have sightline to see the DJ. Branching off from the main room is a pavilion area with walls covered in foliage and waterfalls. A walk upstairs leads to a mezzanine that overlooks the entire main room dance floor. We couldn’t make out the speaker system that was installed, but the booming audio was well balanced and filled the space gracefully.
Once Dada Life took the stage, the crowd was in for a treat. The Swedish duo played a high energy set that combined fan-favorites with surprises like Zombie Nation’s Kernkraft 400. As trademark for every Dada show, pillows were destroyed in a dancefloor pillow fight and fans sent giant inflatable champagne bottles and bananas flying across the venue. Hakkasan added onto the production with a dance troupe clad in glowing banana heads performing choreographed routines while flood lights illuminated Hakkasan in Dada Life yellow. We here at LessThan3 had an incredibly fun night.
It’s not hard to be skeptical about a new nightclub that gets so much media attention, yet Hakkasan delivers. The combination of Dada Life’s high energy show with the Hakkasan’s magnificent venue made for one of the most entertaining nights our team has had. The door staff is the best in Vegas, the bottle service girls (nicknamed Hakkasan Honeys) are gorgeous, and the club is kept at a cool temperature so you never get too hot after hours of dancing. If you ever find yourself heading to Vegas, head on over to Hakkasan; we guarantee that you’ll have the time of your life.