Despite the media’s best efforts, people are still confused about what’s going on at South Third and Fremont streets. Consider the question, “So, what’s the ‘D’ for?” overheard twice at the location during the Oct. 10 grand opening of the hotel-casino bearing the fourth letter as its name.
Even Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman apparently forgot what the “D” was for. During her remarks, Goodman referred to the CEO of The D, Derek Stevens, as David. Thank goodness the former mayor and his two flanking showgirls were on hand to set the record straight.
“I love people who put their money where their mouth is, and Derek and his brother Greg are that kind of people,” Oscar Goodman said.
What the Stevens put their money ($20 million of it) into was a renovation of the hotel, tapping Gensler’s Alice O’Keefe to oversee the interior design. The result is 34 floors of polished rooms well worth referring your out-of-town visitors to. Should they wonder what a D is and why you’re sending them there, tell them:
• The D stands for Derek (as in Stevens), who says that’s what friends called him in his hometown of Detroit.
• The motor city also influenced the remake of the former Fitzgeralds, as did Las Vegas’ urban renaissance, so you could also say the D is for Detroit or downtown, too.
Stevens said his personal favorite part of the new place is the Long Bar, 100 feet of drinking and sports-watching on 15 flat-screen TVs. “It’s so much energy; so many games for people to watch,” Stevens said.
A last insider tip: The American Coney Island hot dog stand at The D is the only one outside Detroit. Chris Keros, grandson of American Coney Island founder Gus Keros, insists his forebear invented the Coney Island hot dog (a.k.a. chili dog) in 1917, when a customer asked for something different.