Lupo in Mandalay Bay is leaving Las Vegas. But staying in town.
The Italian restaurant from chef Wolfgang Puck opened at the Strip property in May 1999. Over nearly a quarter century, it’s had soft refreshes but never a wholesale remodel. Until now. If all goes according to plan, that remodel will begin in August, with a reopening by the end of the year.
And when that happens, Lupo will be no more. Besides a new look, the restaurant will have a new name and concept, though it will still be Italian.
“With the Super Bowl coming, Mandalay Bay has been making a variety of upgrades at the property. They came to us and said, ‘Could we do something different? We want you stay. We want you to do something new for us,’ ” said Thomas Kaplan, senior managing partner in the Wolfgang Puck group.
The name and other specifics haven’t been revealed, but “it’s personal to Wolfgang and his life. We wanted to create something new and exciting and different that’s tied to Wolfgang personally,” Kaplan said.
Wolf heads west
The new restaurant at Mandalay Bay frees up the Lupo name, and the Puck team isn’t letting a beloved brand sit idle. Wolfgang Puck Players Locker, a sports restaurant in Downtown Summerlin, is assuming the Lupo name as part of its conversion into a luxury neighborhood restaurant. Plans call for renovations to begin this summer or early fall, with a launch by the end of the year.
“We’re still working on the design and menu,” Kaplan said. “It will be along the lines of a combination of Spago and Lupo: Mediterranean with American and Asian elements.” Spago, of course, is the chef’s famed restaurant that has been on the Strip since 1992, first in the Forum Shops at Caesars and now at Bellagio.
Both Players Locker and Lupo in Mandalay Bay will close for renovations.
Ongoing changes at Mandalay Bay
The Lupo moves come amid other significant developments in food and drink at the property.
Retro by Voltaggio, from chef brothers and “Top Chef” stars Michael and Bryan Voltaggio, launched in early May in the former Aureole, which chef Charlie Palmer opened in 1999. Flanker Kitchen, a next-gen sports bar with a ceiling installation honoring the Formula One Grand Prix track, launched Saturday at the property. And Fleur, with its regional French cooking, is closing June 30 to make way for a concept yet to be named.
This content was originally published here.