Las Vegas area overview
Clark County, the most populous of Nevada’s 17 counties, is home to more than two million residents, about 73% of the state’s population. The estimated average household income is approximately $62,201. The city of Las Vegas sits at the heart of Clark County and is internationally renowned as the world capital of entertainment. Las Vegas’ gaming, dining, shopping and business conventions are major attractions for national and international visitors. Las Vegas has approximately 150,255 hotel rooms. Over 41.1 million people visited Las Vegas in 2014.
As of November 2014, Las Vegas unemployment stands at 7.2%, which is about 280 basis points lower than it was in 2013 at 10.0%. Tourism is the highest economic sector for Las Vegas representing 31.5% of the market, however professional and business services and retail trade make a significant impact representing 13.1% and 11.8% of the market, respectively.
The strip and gaming
Since 2009, tourism has shown strong growth. In 2014, Las Vegas saw a record 41.1 million visitors and gaming revenue on the Strip reached approximately $6.4 billion. TTM February 2015 gaming revenue is up 1.0% from the same time period in the prior year. Las Vegas is the top U.S. convention and tradeshow destination, hosting over 20,000 conventions each year and bringing in about 5.1 million convention attendees. In 2014 Las Vegas’ average hotel occupancy rate was 86.8% compared to the national average of approximately 60%. The average daily room rate in Las Vegas is $116.73, up 5.4% from 2013.
Revitalization of downtown
A major revitalization of downtown is underway. Below are a few of the projrcts that have recently been completed:
Las Vegas is known for its world-class shopping. Local retail includes four shopping malls, three premium outlet centers and high-end shopping opportunities throughout the Strip, including the Caesars Forum Shops, the Miracle Mile at Planet Hollywood, the Grand Canal Shops at the Venetian, and Crystals, a new 550,000 square foot retail center at City Center.
In 2012, North Las Vegas became home to the first Veterans Affairs (VA) hospital to be built in the United States in 20 years. The $600 million facility will serve approximately 60,000 veterans and has created about 2,000 local jobs in construction and medicine.
Las Vegas is expected to continue to grow as a retirement destination. In addition to the new VA hospital, Las Vegas continues to boast low housing prices and a relatively low cost of living, which are attractive features to retirees.
Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport is moving forward with a $3.1 billion capital improvement program, which culminated in the opening of a new Terminal 3. Terminal 3 brought 14 gates and two million square feet in additional terminal space to the nation’s 7th busiest airport. Due to Las Vegas’ desirability as a destination, over 85% of McCarran’s traffic is origin and destination, which is amongst the highest percentages of any United States airport.
Over the past several years Las Vegas has seen an emergence in the tech sector. Tony Hsieh, the CEO of Zappos.com, wants to create a tech hub in Downtown, and in addition to moving their corporate headquarters to the former city hall, he has created a $50 million venture fund for tech startup companies in Las Vegas. Last year, Take Two Interactive, one of the world’s largest video game developers, relocated their quality assurance testing studio to downtown Las Vegas from Northridge, California; and will add about 150 tech jobs. Switch Data Centers just completed the second phase of the Super NAP colocation data center bringing the current size of the project to about 600,000 square feet. They anticipate growing the project to about 2.2 million square feet.
Just beyond the Strip, Las Vegas offers a variety of outdoor recreation activities:
Although Las Vegas does not have a professional sports team, it offers a variety of sporting events that attract both residents and visitors throughout the year.
Las Vegas offers a variety of post-secondary school opportunities, including the following.
Las Vegas is located at the major junction of I-15 and US-95, and is within a one day drive of Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Phoenix, Denver, Salt Lake City and Reno.
Attractive tax structure
The local tax structure is attractive to individuals and businesses, as Nevada imposes no personal income, estate, business, or gift tax. Another positive for Las Vegas is the local economy. Las Vegas’ economic recovery was expected to trail the national recovery; however, Las Vegas has grown at a faster rate than the national economy.
In 2014, the Las Vegas economy continued its robust improvement and the outlook continues to advance for 2015. unemployment declined, the housing market surged and Las Vegas will continue to be a top destination for california and retirees.