Brown Recalls ‘Cool’ for Golden Nugget

LOS ANGELES Brown & Partners Advertising will launch an aggressive campaign for the Golden Nugget-Las Vegas Hotel and Casino the last week of June, the agency said.

The ads ask and answer the question, “What is cool? ” in an effort to position the Golden Nugget as a vintage-era gambling destination for sophisticated thirty-somethings. The campaign coincides with the airing of Fox’s The Casino, a reality series set in part at the 1,907-room property.

Since the beginning of the year, the former MGM-Mirage hotel has been under private ownership by Web entrepreneurs Tim Poster and Tom Breitling. Drawing inspiration from their shared fondness of celebrities such as Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin—who, as members of the “Rat Pack,” defined cool in the 1950s—Poster and Breitlng hope to portray the property as a modern, hip luxury resort.

“It’s a nod to classic Vegas,” said Rob Catalano, partner and co-creative director at the Las Vegas independent agency, which has worked with the client for the past four years.

“We definitely understand that vibe,” added Rod Reber, Brown partner and director of account services, who helped create the images and captions recalling the Nugget’s glory days. In retro shades of gold and brown, ghostly blue and starch white, the work doesn’t fall into a “cheesy, kitschy trap,” Reber promised. “It’s about the attitude more than the look.”

The three-element campaign begins with four full-page print ads introducing the hotel’s new owners, who are presented in dim light and sharp suits. These will rotate in 15-20 mostly upscale magazines including Esquire, GQ, Conde Nast Traveler and Cigar Aficionado.

An outdoor campaign scheduled to run on 15 to 20 billboards features an off-center close-up of a groomed male hand about to cast a pair of dice. Designed to build buzz in key Vegas feeder markets such as Los Angeles and San Diego, it also will be used as a print concept.

A direct mailer entices Nugget customers to “come to play” with special summer offers. The piece features a sultry Rita Hayworth type glancing at her poker hand; a caption reads, “How a little deck with just 52 cards can create infinite possibilities.”

The agency and client have yet to determine a media budget, but sources said spending would likely be in the six-figure range.