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LAS VEGAS-Las Vegas’ visitor volume was off 0.5% in July and the year-to-date total remains just 0.3% ahead of 2005, according to Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority data released late last week. Visitor volume was 3.37 million in July, off about 18,000 from July 2005. Year-to-date, the Vegas has attracted 22.73 million people, which is about 64,600 ahead of last year’s YTD total.

The new data also shows an increase in convention attendance and a decrease in hotel-motel occupancy. The number of conventions in July jumped 22.1% to 1,531 and attendance increased 11.1% to 392,338. Overall hotel-motel occupancy finished July at 91.1%, down 80 basis points from July 2005, due to a decline in motel occupancy. Motel occupancy fell 103 basis points to 63.8% while hotel occupancy improved by 50 basis points to 95%.

In Laughlin, NV, where Arizona, California and Nevada come together, visitor volume was 294,151 in July, off 16.7% from the previous July, according to the LVCVA. Year-to-date, visitor volume in Laughlin is off 13.6%. Total hotel occupancy is off 630 basis points to 78% from 84.3% in July 2005. Year-to-date, occupancy in Laughlin stands at 79.1%, off 330 basis points from 2005.

Moving in the other direction, visitor volume in Mesquite, near where Nevada, Utah and Arizona come together, was up 1.6% in July to 126,798. Year-to-date through July, visitor volume remains down 4.7%. Hotel occupancy also was up slightly in July to 77.8% but the year-to-date average of 84% is off 4.4% from 2005.

The news comes on the heels of news from the state Gaming Control Board that gaming revenue was up on the Strip and statewide but down in the Downtown core. Downtown Las Vegas gaming revenue fell 5.33% in July while the Las Vegas Strip and the state as a whole saw increases of 9.96% and 8.38%, respectively.

The Strip and statewide numbers were an about-face from June, when their gaming revenue fell 7.1% and 3.47%, respectively. For Downtown Las Vegas, however, the July results mark a continued drop in gaming revenue; the 5.33% decrease in July came on the heels of a 13% drop in June.

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