When it comes to luxury, it really doesn’t get much more vulgar than Las Vegas. It can’t get much more vulgar than Las Vegas. The combination of legalized gambling and legalized prostitution mean that your shallowest, basest, most crass desires will be pandered to faster than you can say “I’ll have the one with the tassles.”
Marketing a luxury proposition that consists of little more than ‘free money and cheap sex’ hasn’t been exactly pushing water up hill. For years promotions for Las Vegas were just minor variations on one idea. Fat slob counts winnings while bejazzled lovelies smear themselves all over his lap.
But it seems that even life in the moral low ground is not immune to the zeitgeist. And at the moment the spirit of the times is mostly saying , “No, no no. Luxury is no longer a shallow concept based on conspicuous consumption and superficial sparkle. “
According to ‘Luxury from the inside Out’, our study of the £150bn global luxury goods industry, consumers are demanding more depth, honesty and discretion from their luxury goods. Following the recession, they want stories of provenance and craftsmanship. They want earthy natural colours and materials. And they want intellectual stimulation.
“Oh really?” I hear you say. Well, if you don’t believe us, you might believe the winner of the Design Grand Prix at Cannes last week.
The Cosmopolitan hotel is a $3.9 billion dollar resort, casino and hotel located in the center of Las Vegas. No shots of easy winnings and easy women in their marketing collateral. No siree. According to the Cannes citation “They set out to create a more meaningful guest experience for a different class of traveller.”
Grasping the zeitgeist firmly by the lapels, design agency Digital Kitchen of Chicago used the entire hotel as a curated art gallery no less.
“We invented a narrative showcase incorporating elegant, fantastical, and often poetic interpretations of life travels in an enlightened, lucid dream, blurring the lines of past present and future into one classic-timeless visual style. The narrative spoke directly to our target audience, the Creative Class, 59 million Americans who are open minded and enjoy adventure. Each story within the narrative tied together evolved throughout the day and had the flexibility to be tailored for special events (New Years, Chinese New Year, etc).” said the agency.
The results are absolutely stunning. Most impressive are the huge columns in reception that are used as canvasses for astonishingly beautiful light installations. http://www.d-kitchen.com/work/digital-experience.
If greedy sex-starved American consumers are suddenly wanting a bit of class in their marcomms, just imagine what your consumers are hankering after. Luxury really has been turned inside out.