“Please leave the starting grid,” the voice on the loudspeaker repeatedly announced to the dense crowd that gathered at the starting lines for the inaugural Las Vegas Grand Prix on November 18th. It was just before Saturday night’s debut at 10 p.m. The 3.8 mile, 210 mph race ran through the streets of Las Vegas, and there were famous spectators all along the route. While the sport has always attracted the elite, the invited guest list on this occasion was commensurate with the spectacle and excitement surrounding the half-billion dollar event. Justin Bieber, Cara Delevingne, Patrick Dempsey, Terry Crews, Kylie Minogue, Brad Pitt, Rihanna and A$AP Rocky, Leonardo DiCaprio, George Lucas, David Beckham, Usain Bolt, Steve Aoki, Gordon Ramsay, Lupita Nyong’o, Lindsey Vonn , Shawn White Martin Garrix, Sir Rod Stewart, Anthony Mackie, Gayle King, Brooklyn Beckham and more roamed the garages, grid and pit lane to the exclusive Wynn Grid Club and Paddock Club Suites, which housed the race teams .
Oracle Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen – the Las Vegas Grand Prix’s main pre-race opponent and top F1 driver – won again with a five-second penalty and a mid-race collision. This time, however, he prevailed, perhaps reluctantly, in a custom-made Viva Las Vegas racing suit as a tribute to Elvis Presley – hours after calling his fellow drivers “clowns” for their participation in the event’s opening ceremony. After the race, however said of Vegas’ first Grand Prix, “I hope everyone enjoyed it; We definitely did that. I’m looking forward to coming back here next year.”
Despite all the drama on track, including the abrupt end to the first practice session in which Scuderia Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz crashed into an unsafe manhole cover, and the subsequent class action lawsuit from fans after the grandstands and hospitality areas were closed before the second practice session In practice, the Las Vegas Grand Prix proved to be a race won off the track. Drivers, stars and brands benefited from Formula 1’s growing reputation in a city where there was hardly any shortage of advertising space.
The driver who dominated the demeanor and collaboration was Lewis Hamilton. He made a surprise appearance at Resorts World’s The Globe in collaboration with Fortnite. At Wynn, he mixed non-alcoholic cocktails with his new pure blue agave non-alcoholic Almave, and crowds flocked to the +44 x Murakami pop-up shop to snap up all the merchandise in this limited-edition driver-to-artist collection.
The after at Delilah’s in Wynn
Four hospitality and nightlife forces, Wynn Las Vegas, The h.wood Group, Bond Hospitality and Carver Road Hospitality, joined forces to throw “The After” on Delilah at Wynn. This event is hosted by Craig Billings (CEO of Wynn Resorts), John Terzian and Brian Toll (co-founders of h.wood Group), and Sean Christie (CEO of Carver Hospitality). Invitation to the F1 afterparty in future years.
Bieber, DiCaprio, White and Brooklyn Beckham attended the opening ceremony, along with Tobey Maguire, Casey Affleck, James Harden, Sofia Vergara, Jon Hamm, Leon Bridges, Zach Braff, Richie Akiva, Ashley Graham, Balthazar Getty, Damson Idris, Anthony Mackie and Fanatics founder Michael Rubin. (Wynn recently announced its new partnership with Scott Sartiano and Will Makris’ Bond Hospitality, which will open a second location of the private members’ club Zero Bond at the resort in 2025. In July, former Wynn executive Sean Christie entered into a strategic partnership with the Resort to collaborate on the Las Vegas restaurant Casa Playa and the new Seamark Seafood & Liquors at Encore Boston Harbor.)
Turn 66 over Resort World
The Allē Lounge on 66 at Resorts World transformed into Turn 66, hosted by Richie Akiva with DJs like DJ Pee .Wee aka Anderson .Paak, Guy Gerber, Kaz James, Ruckus, Vice and more. Rubin, DJ Zedd, Odell Beckham Jr., Rubin, Catch Hospitality co-founder Mark Birnbaum, Chord Overstreet and more were in attendance. The party lasted until 6am two nights in a row.
Bellagio Fountain Club
The highlight of the track watching, the Bellagio Fountain Club was so close to the track that you could feel the roar of the engines and the mist of the famous dancing waters. Vergara, Eva Longoria, Jeremy Renner, Mark Wahlberg and Bill Burr watched the race from there, along with athletes such as soccer player Davante Adams, basketball forward Rudy Gay, golfers Collin Morikawa and Lily He, and tennis champion Taylor Fritz. Guests at the Bellagio Fountain Club enjoyed culinary presentations from Mario Carbone, José Andrés, Jean-Georges Vongraten, David Chang, Michael and Bryan Voltaggio, Michael Mina, Masaharu Morimoto, Alain Ducasse, Christina Tosi, James Kent and Rainer Becker. The Haas team also held a meet and greet at the Bellagio Fountain Club with drivers Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hülkenberg as well as team boss Günther Steiner.
After a similar activation at the Miami Grand Prix, the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula 1 team created an oasis called Vegas Club in Turn 4, one of the most exciting corners on the circuit. The three-story suite featured performances by Las Vegas entertainment troupe Spiegelworld, plenty of champagne, sushi platters and custom-made playing cards featuring the likenesses of drivers George Russell and Lewis Hamilton. Through the team’s partnership with Marriott, their customers were able to bid on the experience, which even included hot laps on the track in a Mercedes-AMG GTR. (The Hot Lap driver was always a surprise and at one point it was team CEO and owner Toto Wolff.) The Vegas Club also includes access to the Paddock Club at the Ritz-Carlton Silver Arrows Lounge.
Shaquille O’Neal and David Beckham co-hosted Sports Illustrated’s Club SI, one of the track’s hospitality lounges that underwent a multimillion-dollar upgrade for the party. O’Neal also DJed the event.
Patrick Dempsey hosted a special screening of his new film Ferrari at Wynn’s Encore Theater. The racing enthusiast spoke before the Grand Prix The Hollywood Reporter that the success of Formula 1 in Las Vegas depends on the thrill. “That’s the great thing about the first time, you never know. And the great thing about racing is the unpredictability,” he said. “I just love the sport, the camaraderie, the camaraderie, the challenge, emotionally and physically. Certainly we are at the forefront of Formula 1, the best drivers in the world, the technology, the innovation. We see it now because Drive to survive, more and more people understand that it’s not just about a car driving around the track. There is a humanity behind it. The drivers, the personalities who keep the team alive and moving.”
Of the movie FerrariDempsey said he was drawn to the romance of motorsports in the 1950s and 1960s. “I love this time,” he said. “For me, the most romantic time in the history of motorsport. The film is set in 1957 and stars a racing driver in Italy with Michael Mann as director. A dream became reality.”
“There are all these wonderful little Easter eggs in there. If you’re a racing fan, we have remarkable cars in the film.” He also described Penelope Cruz’s performance as “shocking.”
“It’s an opera. A great melodrama in many ways, but also some great action sequences.”
Dozens of brands used the newly opened $2.3 billion Sphere as a billboard for the world during the race. To connect with his fans, J Balvin shared a white message board with his community SMS phone number. On Saturday, Balvin became the first artist to perform outside the sphere, using the space and visuals as a backdrop to his set with an interactive Magic 8 Ball. The pictures answered fans’ questions and encouraged them to text J Balvin.
During the show, the Sphere appeared to be surrounded by a thunder and lightning storm that was synchronized with the reggaeton artist’s performance.
On Wednesday, November 15, Wynn Las Vegas welcomed F1 teams, drivers and celebrities to the XS Nightclub following the opening ceremony of the Las Vegas Grand Prix. Present were Will.i.am, Christian Horner, Wolff, Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, Günther Steiner, Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, Lando Norris, Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly as well as Alex Albon.
The following evening, Michael B. Jordan was at XS with The Chainsmokers for the Sports Illustrated Circuit Series.
On Friday, Travis Scott sold out Zouk at Resorts World, while Alix Earle jumped into the DJ booth with Swedish House Mafia at XS Nightclub as the crowd chanted her name. DiCaprio, Maguire, Michael B. Jordan, French Montana and Saweetie were in attendance.
Late in the evening after Saturday’s race, Calvin Harris, Diplo and Dom Dolla headlined XS, along with Hamilton, Kelsea Ballerini, Chase Stokes, Beckham Jr., Russell Westbrook, Wiz Khalifa and others in the audience.