Vegas Abuzz with XS’ Honors from Nightclub & BarFebruary 18, 2010 By: Bryan Bass
When Nightclub & Bar announced the long-awaited and highly anticipated results of the all-new Nightclub & Bar Awards and the annual Top 100 list, there were no doubt celebrations in the back offices of nightclubs in countless cities, and Las Vegas was no different. Especially at XS Nightclub, which overtook TAO for the number one ranking in the Top 100 list — something its much smaller sister club Tryst was unable to do (Tryst finished fifth on this year’s list) — and won both Mega-Club of the Year and New Club of the Year on the nightclub side of the NCB Awards program. Several local media outlets picked up on the stunning trifecta that Wynn nightlife pulled off, including popular Las Vegas Review Journal gossip columnist Norm Clarke, who spoke to Victor Drai after the announcement about the origins of XS. For all those who have seen or heard about the venue, we thought you might find some of these tidbits interesting from Clarke’s interview with Drai. You can read Clarke’s gossip columns daily at the Las Vegas Review Journal web site. Read the full article here.
Steve Wynn, Victor Drai and twin brothers Cy and Jesse Waits have reason to raise a Champagne toast to their XS success. Barely a year old, the megaclub at Encore at Wynn Las Vegas has been named the No. 1 club in the nation.
Sister club Tryst finished fifth. The Las Vegas nightclub industry not only swept the first five spots — Tao at The Venetian was second, Pure at Caesars Palace, third; and The Bank at Bellagio, fourth — but almost one-fourth of the Top 100 were local clubs.
Drai, in an interview with Vegas Confidential on Friday, said the idea for XS came after Tryst put up stunning numbers when Wynn Las Vegas opened six years ago.
"Tryst was such a success Steve wanted to do one for Encore," said Drai, who had recruited the Waits brothers to help operate Tryst.
Drai, who grew up in Paris and experienced the party vibe of the French Riviera, sold Wynn on the idea of an inside-outside concept, featuring a pool in good-weather months.
"The outside element is very important," he said. "We ended up grossing over $100 million between the two clubs."
XS raked in an astounding $70 million. Drai said the biggest nightclub success story of the past decade was Light nightclub (now The Bank) at Bellagio.
"They were doing $12 (million) to $15 million. Then Pure came in around $40 million, and then we came along and blew all these numbers away."