Steve Wynn, how could you?
How could you disappoint all of us who were so proud of you in Las Vegas. We took millions of photos of your Mirage volcano, your Bellagio fountains and gardens and your Wynn carousel. We were proud of the quality you brought to Las Vegas, even, at the Wynn Las Vegas, hiring one man who did nothing but repair imperfect tiles in your lovely ceramic floors. You took care of customers and cab drivers. Your Wynn buffet is great; your entertainment is first rate. Even the tassles on your curtains couldn’t be lovelier. Your deep voice and confidence in interviews made listening to you a must. As a result, we invested in you (literally). You were OUR Las Vegas genius and you always made us excited about the future.
And then, the news.
Yesterday, I joined the Wall Street Journal as an online subscriber (I took a $1 deal for two weeks) so that I could read the article that brought news of Steve Wynn and bad behavior. I was curious to know if the article seemed true.
Sadly, the reporting appeared to be damning…particularly the fact that Wynn apparently knew his behavior was scary, so big tips ($1000) were available to massage therapists. The article did not say why one particular employee received such a whopping $7.5 million settlement, though apparently rape was involved. Here is one paragraph that had a particular ring of truth to me:
“Former employees said they sometimes entered fake appointments in the books to help other female workers get around a request for services in Mr. Wynn’s office or arranged for others to pose as assistants so they wouldn’t be alone with him. They told of female employees hiding in the bathroom or back rooms when they learned he was on the way to the salon.”
Maybe Steve Wynn was too busy to roam the back streets of Las Vegas to hire professional prostitutes; maybe all the casino CEOs did what he did; maybe a number of the salon girls were more than happy to accommodate Wynn. Who knows the truth of all this?
My friend and I go to the Wynn every Monday to gamble for two hours. For that visit, we receive free play and occasionally we can have a free Wynn buffet lunch. This past Monday, my friend talked to an employee about Steve Wynn. The employee said his friends at Wynn stand behind Mr. Wynn. He mentioned that Wynn has said this was a situation that came about because of a pending divorce settlement. He further mentioned an anonymous hot line that has been established at the Wynn property for anyone to report incidents of sexual harassment. The article mentioned the hot line as well, saying no reports had ever been received about Steve Wynn.
But Steve Wynn is now 76 and something tells me that his days as a man in need of female companionship preceded the hot-line days.
In the course of looking for the Wall Street Journal article, I ran across a video of Mr. Wynn. His face looked pretty bad, tan and peculiar, something similar to the peculiar look now on the face of Wayne Newton. I find it amazing how some face lifts really don’t work.
So here is a vain man, a rich man, who apparently thought he could buy anything he wanted any time he wanted it. AND many young women went along with him worried about their jobs and accepting their non-reportable tips. Steve Wynn should have known better and so should have the women.
Whatever happens next, I’ll be interested. Somehow, holding my nose, I hope we haven’t seen the last of Steve Wynn. Regardless, as a Las Vegan, the news about Steve Wynn and his alleged actions with some of his female employees makes me so very sad.