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Sci-Fi Entertainment

Vegas Star Trek Experience Closing Down 234

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the where-3-million-have-gone-before dept.
Leebert writes "Star Trek: The Experience at the Las Vegas Hilton is closing its doors today after the attraction owner and the hotel could not work out a renewed lease deal. In its 10-year tenure, more than 3 million people have visited the Trek themed exhibit. 'Trekkies are incensed. They've scrawled reminiscences about the exhibit on the walls inside, and they're calling Cedar Fair and the hotel to complain. But their online rumor that the space the exhibit occupies will become a theater for pop star Michael Jackson is unfounded, Sternberg said. He said nothing's decided.'"
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Vegas Star Trek Experience Closing Down

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  • Wow 10 years! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Merlin42 (148225) * on Monday September 01, 2008 @02:41PM (#24833905) Homepage

    I had never heard of this, but then again I have never actually gone to Vegas.

    Anyway, would that make this the longest running Star Trek franchise?

    • by e9th (652576) <e9th@t[ ]dex.com ['upo' in gap]> on Monday September 01, 2008 @02:55PM (#24834041)

      I had never heard of this, but then again I have never actually gone to Vegas.

      Neither have I. This may provide a clue as to why it's closing.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Stellian (673475)

        I have never actually gone to Vegas.

        Neither have I. This may provide a clue as to why it's closing.

        Another clue: geeks understand how probability works.

      • Re:Wow 10 years! (Score:5, Interesting)

        by goodtim (458647) on Monday September 01, 2008 @04:19PM (#24834857) Journal
        I went to the exhibit last February with a good friend of mine (and fellow Trekkie). While I did find it to be a bit overpriced (I believe the tickets were $50.00 each), it was well worth it. The rides were entertaining, and the memorabilia very cool. However the best part by far was "Quarks Bar". I had myself more then few Warp Core Breaches [flickr.com] (complete with dry ice!). I would avoid the Romulan Ale however, it tastes like Bud Light, with blue food coloring.
        • by Rakarra (112805)

          Quark's Bar was, by far, the best place in Vegas to have a party with friends.

          Those Warp Core Breaches were pretty good...

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by ColdSam (884768)
          How can it be overpriced and "well worth it" at the same time?
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by JMandingo (325160)

          I've been there twice as well. I very much enjoyed both rides, and hanging around in Quarks bar was fun. The production values of the entire place are top notch.

          One of the best parts was the backstage tour. It lasted well over an hour, you got to meet the cast members, and there was lot's of interesting trivia. We got to explore a scale replica of the Enterprise bridge for as long as we wanted to.

        • Re:Wow 10 years! (Score:4, Informative)

          by Nogami_Saeko (466595) on Monday September 01, 2008 @07:50PM (#24836659)

          I was there in January during CES. I found it a little overpriced, however it was pretty fun. I thought that the Borg experience where you actually take part in a pre-scripted adventure was the most entertaining of the two. The transporter effect on the Klingon adventure was pretty interesting.

          I agree with others that Quark's bar was pretty good. The drinks were good, and the food was actually good (and not too expensive, given that it was Vegas). Fun atmosphere. Maybe they should just move Quark's somewhere else. It would probably still be popular.

          That said, it did have some rough edges on it. You could start to get the feel of things being a bit run-down and in need of some updating (older, burned-in computer monitors set in the display screens, etc). The IMAX films were getting pretty scratched up and were in bad shape - they really needed some crisp new prints.

          Could it still be successful as a Vegas attraction? I dunno - it's been quite some time since TNG, and until the Trek franchise is re-invigorated, existing fans probably wouldn't have been quite as interested.

          N.

    • Re:Wow 10 years! (Score:4, Informative)

      by religious freak (1005821) on Monday September 01, 2008 @03:54PM (#24834609)
      Wow, then you've missed out. I've been there a couple times and it was great fun. The experience/ride was cool, but my favorite aspect was just the overall ambiance of the place. It truly was a Disneyland for a trek nerd.

      They had a reproduction of Quark's bar where you could order exotic looking (and fairly tasty) food and drink, Klingons and Feringi walking around making comments about typical ST stuff, and all kinds of ST crap to buy. Yeah, all of it was woefully overpriced, but it IS Vegas and much better than spending an hour at a blackjack table.

      I still have a couple of tribbles I bought there. Though I'm actually surprised it stayed around so long, it's a shame to see it go... a real shame.
      • by Mascot (120795)

        I still have a couple of tribbles I bought there.

        Me too. And it's one of the few noises my guinea pigs refuse to get used to.

        It'll be strange going to Vegas and not vising it. It's become tradition on our US vacations.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by RobertM1968 (951074)

      Been to Vegas, but didnt know this existed till recently... I've been too busy with my own Star Trek Experience helping make this... Star Trek New Voyages [startreknewvoyages.com]

      But, as for longest running franchise, I guess you aren't including Paramount? Dunno... I wonder if some of the original Trek based franchises from the early days are still around? And possibly Pocket Books' Trek franchise predates it.

  • SciFi Museum (Score:4, Interesting)

    by VoxMagis (1036530) on Monday September 01, 2008 @02:42PM (#24833911)

    Seems to me a great opportunity to pack it up and move it to the Science Fiction Museum in Seattle.

    • by CaptainPatent (1087643) on Monday September 01, 2008 @02:46PM (#24833957) Journal
      I don't think it matters where it moves to.

      With all the enthusiasm behind it, I'm sure it will live long and prosper.
      • by bonehead (6382)

        Speaking personally, it makes a great deal of difference to me where they move it to.

        I enjoy Vegas. If they stay there, I'll get to visit it again.

        Seattle, on the other hand, I would actually pay good money to avoid having to visit, so if they move there, it's as good as gone to me.

        While it's certainly a cool exhibit, it doesn't rise to the level of something you can plan an entire vacation around.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by magarity (164372)

      You know you've been watching too much Star Trek when you casually say pack up a hotel and exhibit hall and move them to Seattle from Vegas.

    • Re:SciFi Museum (Score:5, Informative)

      by Mitch Haile (822543) on Monday September 01, 2008 @03:25PM (#24834323) Homepage

      I realize this might have been a joke, but I've been to both the SF museum in Seattle and the Star Trek Experience in Vegas.

      Trust me, the SF museum in Seattle has nothing on the Star Trek Experience. No disrespect to Paul Allen; it's just the magnitude of the two isn't even close.

      The Star Trek Experience was absolutely incredible--very well done, terrific actors, great museum, the rides were stellar, and Quark's bar had some kind of fish bowl alcoholic drink with dry ice--all in all, an unforgettable experience. And I say this as someone who was never very interested in Star Trek.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by pgillan (1043668)
        The drink was called the Warp Core Breach, I think. If I was in Vegas for more than a day or two, I used to try hit that place for lunch. I haven't been there for a while, but even then the whole place was starting to look pretty run down.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          There was another, similar drink called the Borg Sphere as well.
          I was going to try one of them a couple weeks ago, but they actually closed at 1 in the morning even though the place was still packed. (Sony's Fan Faire was held in the same hotel, which contributed quite a bit to the place being full that night.)
          You can see the menu for Quark's here (as a PDF):
          http://www.startrekexp.com/pdf/quarks_menu.pdf [startrekexp.com]

    • I thought it was a skitzo soap/court drama with occasional western themed episodes?

  • I wish I would have known, I would have gone and visited! Oh well, Beam me up Scotty, there are no intelligent life form in the vicinity.
  • Got the chance to go there while visiting a friend in LV a couple years. It embarrassed the hell out of her, but I had to go.

    Anyway, it's all mostly sub-Disney type rides and prop filler, but still lots of fun, shame it's shutting down.
    • My wife and I (both trekkies) have talked about going for years.

      Now my only reason to ever visit Vegas is gone. Bummer ... it (ST experience) was right at the top of my places to go see :(

    • It was cheesy, but the sets where well done. I wish they had allowed more time to stroll about and admire them instead of being ushered through. The Andorian girl they had walking about in tight slutty latex was a nice touch, and of course they served alcohol at the end. IIRC one of the drinks was named the 'reactor breach'.

    • by Deadstick (535032)

      The CheeseBorger at the restaurant wasn't bad...and until our waiter arrived I hadn't known there are gay Klingons.

      rj

  • I've been to it twice over the years, both times I visited Vegas when flying over from Ireland.

    Enjoyed both times and its sad to see it go :(

    • by nospam007 (722110) on Monday September 01, 2008 @02:50PM (#24834001)

      >But their online rumor that the space the exhibit occupies will
      become a theater for pop star Michael Jackson...

      At least it will stay a SF/Alian theme...

      • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 01, 2008 @03:04PM (#24834141)

        Hopefully, the Casino rules will still stand and no one under 21 will be allowed into MJ Land. Actually, as long as they keep anyone under about 14 out, they should do fine. If they do decide on the Michael Jackson Theatre, I think we should insist they add the Roman Polanski, OJ Simpson and Phil Spector Theaters in the same building. Then we can nuke the building from space. (It's the only way to be certain.)

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by davolfman (1245316)
          If you're going to bombard buildings from space you really ought to do it in Salt Lake City. The grid system makes it easy, they even give you a nice big target at the center of the coordinate system to zero your sight with.
    • by Rick Bentley (988595) on Monday September 01, 2008 @03:55PM (#24834619) Homepage
      For those who haven't seen it, it was pretty great. I went on it when it first opened on a company event (General Magic) while at a trade-show and went back on my own a couple more times over the next several years. It went something like this:

      1) After you buy your ticket you get in line to get in. The line winds around a kind of museum that goes through the time-line of the Star Trek Universe. It's kinda like reading a big comic book summary of all the different shows and movies.

      2) Then you get together for a shuttle simulation ride. But before you can get on the ride, while watching a safety video, you get accidentally beamed aboard the Enterprise (Next Generation vintage).

      3) Then you are put on a "real" shuttle and go on a crazy ride involving battle with Klingons before you're brought back to your own time through a wormhole or whatnot.

      4) After the ride you can go hang out and Quark's bar and stuff like that. At the bar there's usually at least one Klingon in character with a working knowledge of Klingon (at least the three or four things I'm geeky-enough to know). I hear more recently that there was a Borg-related ride added on as well.

      Wikipedia has all the details here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Star_Trek:_The_Experience [wikipedia.org]

      Anyway, it wasn't geek nirvana but it was kinda close. I can only hope that the Genesis Planet that is Vegas produces a new better one someday...
      • They had a wedding experience too, where you could get married on the bridge of the Enterprise - with one of the actors as a witness.

  • God damn... (Score:5, Funny)

    by denzacar (181829) on Monday September 01, 2008 @02:54PM (#24834029) Journal

    ...Ferengi bastards!

  • by mschuyler (197441) on Monday September 01, 2008 @02:58PM (#24834071) Homepage Journal

    It was on a par with Star Tours in Disneyland--better because of the costumed actors as part of the show. I enjoyed it, took both sets of adult kids to it over the years. My wife would never open her eyes in teh shuttle. "My, God. Open your eyes and experience the thrill!" The costumed Ferengi in the restaurant was great and the props and timeline were top notch. Guess there's no reason to go out of your way over to the Hilton any more. Oh, well.

    • by Tablizer (95088)

      It was on a par with Star Tours in Disneyland--better because of the costumed actors as part of the show. I enjoyed it,

      My favorite part was when the actors in the turbo lift started to come unglued (acting) when the ship was being fired upon and had to be slapped into shape. It was un-federation-like, but that's what made it fun. I went through twice, but they only did this gag the first time.

      The other cool part was the sexy Vulcan babe they had as part of the cast. There could be a whole nother industry ar

  • by joeflies (529536) on Monday September 01, 2008 @03:03PM (#24834133)

    I found the musueum exhibit at The San Diego Air & Space Museum to be far more rewarding. I spent hours at the San Diego exhibit, looking at the detail at which items were presented. Set reproductions, models from the show, props and costumes. It was fantastic. [aerospacemuseum.org]

    The vegas experience was something I walked through and felt like I was being shuffled through like cattle - there are people lining up, looking over you, and many don't even want to be there.

    I hear that the San Diego exhibit was part of a much larger exhibit that was broken up - I wish I could have seen the original.

  • I went expecting... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by NitroWolf (72977) on Monday September 01, 2008 @03:09PM (#24834171)

    The first time I went, I was expecting something extremely cheap and stupid. I was so very pleasantly surprised by the transporter the first time. The recreation of the bridge was top notch and the surprise transport blew me away, since I was expecting something stupid.

    It was definitely worth seeing and it's sad that it's closing down, since it was a pretty decent "show" for fairly cheap. The shuttle craft bit was standard motion ride fare, but otherwise the actors did a good job and Quarks bar was pretty good for ambiance and such.

    Oh, did I mention the surprise transporter was excellent? :) I took a few people over the years just for that effect.

    • by gooman (709147)

      I agree. I went a few months after it opened. Overall, it was very good, not awesome, but very good. The transporter effect was excellent! Made the whole thing worth doing. Went several times since.

      Too bad it's gone now. But I think it's better to have it be gone and fondly remembered, than have it become an old joke of an attraction.

      That's the thing about Las Vegas, it's a very dynamic town. There's always somthing new. They don't get stuck in the past. Blow up the old, build something new. Sure they've lo

  • Obligatory (Score:2, Funny)

    by Zephurus (1204434)
    KHAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNN!
  • Its a sign (Score:4, Funny)

    by TRRosen (720617) on Monday September 01, 2008 @03:29PM (#24834361)

    A sign that Vegas needs a entire Star Trek Themed hotel.

    Quarks Casino, Shopping on the Promenade, The Risa Day Spa, The 10 forward lounge, Sulu's bath house err ahhh

    • And Deana Troy running around in her tights.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by v1 (525388)

        you can have Troi, I'll be hangin' with 7 thankyouverymuch

        • by Spatial (1235392)
          Borg vaginas have teeth!
        • by tylernt (581794) on Monday September 01, 2008 @11:41PM (#24838485)

          you can have Troi, I'll be hangin' with 7 thankyouverymuch

          Let's think about this. On one hand, you could have a woman who will assimilate you into her collective -- resistance is futile -- and on the other hand, you could have a woman who knows exactly what you want.

          I'll stick with Troi, thanks.

          Oh, man. I just went online and debated the relative merits of Trek women. I'm not sure if I should be proud, or ashamed.

  • by Leontes (653331) on Monday September 01, 2008 @03:30PM (#24834367)
    I went there once: when I was in vegas, saw both the exhibits. It was really neat to be on the bridge and the shuttle craft. I was caught pushing the buttons and was jokingly yelled at by the "Lieutenant"for messing with the gravity systems. All the star trek memorabilia was worth seeing and I had a cup of something blue in the Quark bar afterwards where I spoke with a bomber pilot (no kidding) who was a member of the Canadian air force. I'm still not sure if he was part of the exhibit. In and all, sad to see it go... Was great to read the Wil Wheaton's rememberances after attending the exhibit shortly after it opened, which is why I decided to check it out.
    • by multisync (218450) *

      Was great to read the Wil Wheaton's rememberances after attending the exhibit shortly after it opened, which is why I decided to check it out

      Yeah, speaking of which, it's been a while since we heard from ol' you-know-who [slashdot.org]. Wonder what he thinks about this, if he does at all.

      • by JohnFluxx (413620)

        Looking at his last few posts, there has been someone posting anonymously insulting him. Maybe that's why we haven't heard from him for a while?

        • by multisync (218450) *

          I see what you mean. That's too bad, I enjoyed his comments but I can't say I blame him. That would get old pretty quick.

      • by fm6 (162816)

        I've lost interest in Wil's thoughts since he took down his version of his fights with Rick Bermann. Presumably he did this in exchange for that walk-on role in Nemesis. Which was then cut. Serves him right.

    • by tcolberg (998885) on Monday September 01, 2008 @04:26PM (#24834939)
      If this weren't closing today, I'd probably go back right now and push buttons too. If a Lt caught me, I would just claim "I'm rerouting auxiliary power". As any Trekker knows, rerouting auxiliary power is probably the most important thing in a starship battle, right after raising shields and holding on for dear life.
  • I'm pretty sure Trekkies could find room for their gatherings at Bellevue.

  • Warp Core Breach (Score:4, Interesting)

    by sbillard (568017) on Monday September 01, 2008 @03:54PM (#24834613) Journal
    I, for one, am going to miss the Warp Core Breach drink at "Quarks" bar/restaurant after the show/ride.
    Dry ice in a drink the size of a fishbowl! Make it *_hic_*... Make it *_hic_*... Engage.

    The Klingon, Ferengi, and Borg actors made for some better than average atmosphere.

    [annecdote] friend of mine knew how to speak some "klingon" and got into it with one of those staff actors at the bar. received a head butt and mock beat-down for his trouble.[/annecdote].
    Good times.
    • by tgd (2822) on Monday September 01, 2008 @04:38PM (#24835057)

      [annecdote] friend of mine knew how to speak some "klingon" and got into it with one of those staff actors at the bar. received a head butt and mock beat-down for his trouble.[/annecdote].

      Good times.

      I can't decide if I want to post a mocking reply or a "zomg, thats cool!" reply.

      Tell you what, if anyone asks outside of Slashdot, I mocked your anecdote, but between you and me thats freakin' cool.

    • A friend of mine tried that with a Nausican and was stabbed through the heart.

  • I've not been to Vegas since 2001 and to be honest, I'm pretty sad that I won't get to do the ST experience again. It was fantastic with one of the best 'wow' moments ever served up by any theme park ride I've ever been on.

    Oh well, saves me having to go anywhere near the pit that is LV: Hilton I guess, least time spent that end of the strip the better :)

  • Usually when something like this closes down, they send out a message saying "we're closing in six months".

    I'm bummed I can't go to it one last time.

    Just goes to show it was crappy marketing that ruined this exhibit.
  • by amccaf1 (813772) on Monday September 01, 2008 @04:09PM (#24834753)

    63 comments in and still no one has made an "it's dead, Jim" joke? What happened to the slashdot I used to know?!

    • by pjt33 (739471)

      What happened to the slashdot I used to know?!

      It may not be dead, amccaf1, but it's not as you know it.

    • by morcego (260031)

      63 comments in and still no one has made an "it's dead, Jim" joke? What happened to the slashdot I used to know?!

      We are all waiting for netcraft to confirm it ...

  • I was in Las Vegas for Defcon and had not been in 4 years. The wife had come along and was very excited to go to the Star Trek Experience. That is when we found out it was closing. I got to go on it one last time, and the wife got to see it before it closed. I feel we were very lucky. RIP Star Trek the Experience. I will remember you always!

  • I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened.
  • First they close and sell off a good portion of Geauga lake and now their dropping Star trek.

    Whats next? Sell off Cedar Point's Magnum XL200?

  • more than 3 million people have visited the Trek themed exhibit.

    Make that more than 2,999,999 - I went twice.

  • They'll just reverse the polarity and it'll all work out.

  • Why don't they just program in the exhibit into a holodeck? I'm sure they could find some space for something that small.

  • Well, just like the final episode of TNG, the Star Trek Experience is now coming to an end as well. While other people might lament its passing I think that it might actually be better for the franchise if some (most perhaps?) of the sets and models were moved into a smaller exhibit (the SF museum in Seattle has been mentioned by others) with somewhat fewer rides and attractions in exchange for attracting more serious fans who made the trip just for the Star Trek exhibit and not just as another theme stop o
  • Was planning on taking Dad there for his 50th Birthday in 2011. Drag.

    • by Zordak (123132)
      Never been there myself, but I understand this is the part of the strip where you don't have to take your dad in drag. Normal clothes should do just fine.
  • ... are there any high quality videos of the rides, Quark's bar, etc.? I have seen photographs, but I'd like to see them in actions.

  • by Zombie Ryushu (803103) on Monday September 01, 2008 @05:57PM (#24835763)

    I see this as a disturbing trend in our society's prosperity. Star Trek was a symbol of a rational, secular future that was peaceful and optimistic. It was a world I wanted to live in as a child. But in reality I grew in a backward part of the world as a child: The American South. I wanted to explore space. But I was considered a weirdo and a nutcase as a kid because nobody in my Elementary school knew what a Borg was.

    We have no active star trek series. Our science fiction authors are croaking off. And now this. Slowly, the optimistic future that Star Trek represented is falling vanishing in favor of a backward religious future. Its really sad.

    • I see this as a disturbing trend in our society's prosperity. Star Trek was a symbol of a rational, secular future that was peaceful and optimistic. It was a world I wanted to live in as a child. But in reality I grew in a backward part of the world as a child: The American South. I wanted to explore space. But I was considered a weirdo and a nutcase as a kid because nobody in my Elementary school knew what a Borg was.

      I was at Busch Gardens in VA maybe a decade ago, waiting in line for a ride. Behind me were two absolutely hick looking people--a dad and his son. Both had nascar/harley shirts, rattails, and very thick Appalachian accents. They were also talking about Star Trek for about 30 minutes! (it was a long wait)

      And heck, I grew up in the south and most of my friends loved Star Trek, not just the better educated, or the yankee transplants, etc.

      We have no active star trek series. Our science fiction authors are croaking off. And now this. Slowly, the optimistic future that Star Trek represented is falling vanishing in favor of a backward religious future. Its really sad.

      Well, the science fiction authors croaking off doesn't bother me--I mean,

    • Was that he didn't see the MPAA's trap before he died. Now the cultural icons he created and his contribution to our culture will be gradually forgotten, locked away in the vaults, his message lost as the icon vendors grope to fine unexploited pop memes.

      They have defeated him, and us. A shame, too. His was a message of hope.

  • I was planning on going there in December!!! Oh the humanity! What am I going to do now? The entire trip... RUINED! I might as well kill myself now!
  • Both rides were fun. I see lots of people posting about the classic trek ride with a
    reproduction NCC-1701-? bridge, but there was a second Borg themed ride where you sat in half-circle
    theatre and watched a 3D film instead of taking a shuttle ride on a motion simulator. Just like on
    the shuttle, the best place was on the front row but doubly so for the 3D ride as you could feel the
    triggered FX: jets of cold, moist air. There were also seat "pokers" that jammed you in the ribs
    as you were assimilated.

    Fun and

  • Reopen Quark's!

    I can't imagine there's no room for a Quark's restaurant these days. The thing is, if they decide to open that someplace else, I would never hear about it. The restaurant could very likely stand on its own without the ride before it. I'm trying to think of the city that would be most likely to bring such a restaurant enough traffic.

  • Complete with authentic fake ears, hair, nose etc.
  • ...I'm sad to see this go. I went once at the urging of my friend, and if he didn't drag me to it, I wouldn't have went. I'm glad he dragged me because it was the coolest thing I experienced in Vegas. Yeah, the boobies at Zumanity are neat to look at and stars are certainly talented, but they (unfortunately) weren't interactive. Star Trek: The Experience was a lot of fun and I'm glad that I got to go.

  • A few years back, just before having kids, my wife and I decided to take a trip to Las Vegas. During our trip, we went to The Star Trek Experience. Overall, it was quite fun, but one experience in particular stands out. My wife had to use the restroom. To get there you went through one door. Past that door was a very short hall with three doors: One for the men's room, one for the women's room, and a door leading to the staff area. As my wife opened the hallway door to go in, a staff member dressed as

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