Jeffrey Soffer’s Fontainebleau Las Vegas opens after years of delays

Jeffrey Soffer, in partnership with Koch Real Estate Investments, get project across the finish line

Fontainebleau Development Chairman & CEO Jeffrey Soffer (Getty)
Fontainebleau Development Chairman & CEO Jeffrey Soffer (Getty)

The long-stalled Fontainebleau Las Vegas finally became a reality last week with a star-studded grand opening that included Tom Brady, Cher, Justin Timberlake and other celebrities on hand.

The 67-story hotel-casino is one of the biggest in Las Vegas, spanning 25 acres and 9 million square feet, featuring about 3,650 hotel rooms, 550,000 square feet of convention and meeting space, in addition to gaming, dining, retail and health and wellness spaces, according to a press release. 

The ceremony, held on Dec. 13 at the Urs Fischer Gallery, featured champagne, live violinists, and the symbolic snipping of the blue — or Bleau — ribbon.

“Welcome to the Fontainebleau Las Vegas era,” Fontainebleau Development Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Soffer said, adding the resort’s opening was a symbol of perseverance.

Indeed, the resort was originally conceived in the early 2000s as a $2.8 billion, 3,815-room resort complete with 24 eateries, a 3,300-seat theater hall and retail.

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The project was first led by Jeffrey Soffer of Turnberry and Glenn Schaeffer, formerly of the Mandalay Resort Group. Construction started in 2007 with a completion date in 2009, but it went bankrupt that year before Carl Icahn swooped in and acquired the unfinished resort in 2010 for about $150 million.

Icahn then sold it to developer Steve Witkoff for $600 million in 2017, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Witkoff planned on a completion date of 2022 for the project, but shut down construction due to the COVID pandemic, the outlet reported.

Soffer, in partnership with Koch Real Estate Investments, then reacquired the property in 2021.

Last December, the developers secured a $2.2 billion construction loan to complete the project.

Last week, Soffer joined Clark County Commissioner Tick Segerblom on stage to receive the Key to the Strip, with Dec. 13 declared “Fontainebleau Las Vegas Day.” Fontainebleau Development and Fontainebleau Las Vegas were also presented with the Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition from U.S. Sen. Jacky Rosen, a Certificate of Special Congressional Commendation from U.S. Rep. Dina Titus and an official proclamation from Assemblyman Howard Watts III.