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What’s an ‘experience box?’ Find out when Las Vegas’ mysterious AREA15 opens Thursday

  • September 18, 2020

LAS VEGAS – Minutes from the glittering resorts on the Strip is a mysterious black box called AREA15.

That mystery will crack wide open Thursday at 6 p.m. PDT, when the bunker-style entertainment complex with otherworldly flair opens to the public for the first time.

A collaborative venture between real estate development firm Fisher Brothers and creative agency Beneville Studios, AREA15 can be described as an experience mall. You enter for free, but you’ll have to pay for the experiences you want to have.

Inside is a 23-foot Japanese maple tree and a canopy of 5,000 twinkling LED lights. There’s a virtual reality simulation that mimics what it’s like to be a bird. There are art installations, retail, bars, eateries and more.

“We call it an ‘experience box,'” Winston Fisher, CEO of AREA15, told the USA TODAY Network.

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AREA 15 opens Sept. 17 in Las Vegas.

What’s inside AREA 15?

While entry is free, guests will have to pay for certain experiences. Here’s a look at what’s inside: 

Art Island: A gallery for the exhibition of large-scale, festival-inspired artwork.

Art Island at AREA15.

Birdly Virtual Reality Experience: Birdly mimics what it’s like to be a bird. Guests will feel the wind beneath their wings and get a bird’s eye view of what it’s like fly through the skies of New York, Singapore and prehistoric worlds. Cost: $13.25, adults. $10.25, 12 and under. $12, ages 65+. 

Emack Bolios: A Boston-based shop serving ice cream, yogurt, homemade fudge and chocolate, micro-brewed sodas and more. 

Gallerie 360 inside The Portal: An immersive audio and visual experience featuring the work of digital artists. Cost: To be determined, but free opening on weekend.

Gallerie 360 inside The Portal: An immersive audio and visual experience featuring the work of world-renowned digital artists.

Haley’s Comet: The first indoor, electric dual-track suspension ride in the United States. The glider-ride pits two guests against each other in a race at 8 mph. Cost: $18, adults. $12, ages 12 and under. $16, ages 65+. 

Oddwood: At the heart of Oddwood is a nearly 23-foot-high Japanese maple tree and a 28-by-17-foot canopy of more than 5,000 twinkling LED lights. 

Sanctuary by Ibuku Design Studio: This rest spot is made of bamboo from the islands of Bali and Java. 

Shogyo Mujo by Bart Kresa Studio and Joshua Harker: An interactive, 12-foot tall skull covered in 3D projection mapping and synched to music.

AREA15's Vortex.

The Beast Pop-up Food Experience: AREA15’s outdoor event space will be transformed into this outdoor dining experience.

The SPINE: Described as AREA15’s “backbone,” The Spine is a corridor art installations, retail, food and beverage offerings.

Valyrian Steel by Henry Chang Design: A kinetic art car that is “part Mad Max, part Mars Rover.”

Wild Muse Boutique: A retail bazaar inside The SPINE stocked with handcrafted, sustainable apparel, accessories, art, and eco-friendly health and wellness products from both local and international makers.

Wild Muse Boutique: A retail bazaar inside The SPINE stocked with handcrafted, sustainable apparel, accessories, art, and eco-friendly health and wellness products from both local and international makers.

More experiences on the way

Over the coming months, many other installments are coming to AREA15, including:

  • Meow Wolf’s Omega Mart
  • Lost Spirits Distillery
  • Dueling Axes
  • Emporium Bar and Arcade
  • Wink World
  • The Beast Food Hall by Todd English
  • Rocket Fizz candy shop
  • Intel Innovation Hub

What else you need to know:

Guests must register

Anyone interested in checking out AREA15 on opening weekend must register available time slots. Register here.

Masks required

All guests must wear face coverings.

Ed Komenda writes about Las Vegas for the Reno Gazette Journal and USA Today Network. Do you care about democracy? Then support local journalism by subscribing to the Reno Gazette Journal right here

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