Coming soon: Six features of the Linq, Caesars’ new entertainment-dining-shopping promenade

A worker uses a tarp for shade as he works in a lift at Caesars Entertainment’s Linq development Tuesday, July 29, 2013. The $550 million shopping, dining and entertainment district will be anchored by the 550-foot-tall High Roller observation wheel. The project’s first phase is expected to open in late 2013.

For months, there has been the steady buzz of saws, the hammering of nails and the grumbling of bulldozers.

Now, at the end of a 1,200-foot pedestrian walkway, a 550-foot-tall observation wheel is taking shape.

Developers of Caesars Entertainment's Linq offered a sneak peek today of the forthcoming development, a $550-million dining, retail and entertainment promenade expected to open in December.

Here's what visitors will have to look forward to:

    • Vintage pedestrian walkway

      This 1,200-foot walkway, which runs perpendicular to the Strip and forms the main thoroughfare of the Linq, looks like a closed city street, complete with streetlights, curbs and roadside.

      The brick facades of the buildings that run along it offer historic treats. One is stamped, "INDUSTRIAL BANK & TRUST," suggesting a history that reaches back decades.

      "There is a need for a pedestrian sidewalk perpendicular to the Las Vegas Strip," said Branislav Hetzel, owner of Hetzel Design and a Linq designer.

      Developers hope the promenade will serve as a funnel for the 22 million annual visitors who walk by the cluster of Caesars casinos mid-Strip.

    • Beer and beer pong

      It was a sad day for many when construction crews demolished O'Sheas, famous for its beer pong, to make room for the Linq project.

      In a nod to fans, Linq developers installed the original, refurbished O'Sheas sign at the new O'Sheas location along the plaza's main walkway.

      And known for its huge selection of craft beers, the Yard House is set to open its largest location nationally next to the Linq's High Roller observation wheel. From the bar windows, customers will be able to see the glow of the giant wheel fewer than 100 yards away.

    • Brooklyn Bowl

      Developers hope this Brooklyn-born hipster hangout serves as the nexus between the Linq's Gen-X clientele and big-name Strip entertainers.

      Jon Gray, vice president and general manager of the Linq, said the 78,000-square-foot bowling alley will host a concert every night with enough room for 22,000 bodies.

      In Brooklyn, the Bowl has attracted Kanye West, the Yeah Yeah Yeas and Bruno Mars.

    • Casino connector

      While the Linq will be a brand new attraction, Caesars officials hope the development benefits the company's nearby resorts.

      A walkway will lead guests from the Carnaval Court plaza of Harrah's through the Quad to the Linq.

      Developers already transformed the facade and reception areas of the Quad. The Flamingo also will get a new entrance, which will lead guests to the Linq's 20,000-square-foot central plaza.

    • The High Roller

      At 550 feet tall and 520 feet wide, the High Roller is slated to be the largest observation wheel in the world – bigger than the London Eye or Singapore Flyer.

      The wheel is nestled at the end of the Linq's 1,200-foot pedestrian walkway and will feature 28 glass-enclosed cabins offering broad views of the Las Vegas Strip. Each cabin can hold 40 people and a single revolution will take 30 minutes.

      Caesars projects 4 million to 5 million riders in the first year. Developers have not yet settled on ticket prices.

    • An artist's illustration of Caesars Entertainment's Linq development. The $550 million shopping, dining and entertainment district will be anchored by the 550-foot-tall High Roller observation wheel. The project's first phase is expected to open in late 2013.

      The Vortex

      The entrance to the Linq looks like a piece of contemporary art, anchored by a 7,000-square-foot, color-changing Vortex that resembles a tree of flashing lights.

      Developers say the lighted entrance, designed by Yesco, can serve as its own fireworks show on the Fourth of July.

      A second story observation deck beneath the canopy can be used for club events.

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