CBS Confirms Contract To Re-open ST: The Experience in May + New ST:TE Documentary |
jump to navigation

CBS Confirms Contract To Re-open ST: The Experience in May + New ST:TE Documentary February 26, 2009

by Anthony Pascale , Filed under: Conventions/Events/Attractions , trackback

TrekMovie has been reporting that Star Trek The Experience, which closed last year at the Las Vegas Hilton, is headed todowntown Las Vegas and today CBS finally confirmed the move. They are not providing many more details, but TrekMovie has done a little digging to find out what is going on with the rebirth of this Trek attraction.  Plus there is an interesting new documentary online, all about the history of ST: The Experience.


Contract Confirmed for a ‘New’ Star Trek The Experience
The CBS news came today in an article at SciFiWire, where CBS Exec Vice President Liz Kalodner confirmed that a contract has been signed for a phased re-opening of Star Trek The Experience at Neonopolis in downtown Las Vegas, starting with a restaurant and shops by May 8th (the same day the Star Trek movie opens).  Kolodner noted it was "premature" to talk about any details beyond confirming the contract existed. 

TrekMovie has done a little digging and has learned that no construction has started on the bar/restaurant and that the former staff and cast have yet to be contacted about being rehired. However designs are in place for what is being called a ‘new’ Star Trek The Experience, which will be more technologically advanced and which  also brings in more of The Original Series era (something lacking in the The Experience at the Hilton). However it is unclear if the rides (which will open later in the year or 2010) will be new or just modified versions of the previous ones at the Hilton (Borg Invasion and Klingon Encounter).

Expect those kind of details when CBS makes the official announcement. Until they do make the announcement, the dates and details reported so far should not be considered final (so don’t book those trips just yet). TrekMovie will continue to monitor the return of ST: The Experience and report things as they develop. 

ST: The Experience Insider’s web documentary
Vernon Wilmer, one of the former castmembers of Star Trek The Experience at the Hilton (primary playing a Borg), has started posting twelve-part documentary covering the history of Star Trek The Experience. Today he released part one, check it out his Vimeo channel. Here is the trailer for the full series. 

from Vernon Wilmer on Vimeo.


1. Joey - February 26, 2009

It will be nice to see this return!

2. Rob - February 26, 2009

This is awesome news!

3. jefv88 - February 26, 2009

AWESOME VEGAS here I come!!!!

4. KevinA Melbourne Australia - February 26, 2009

I was at the closing last year.
Can’t wait for the new one!

5. Reign1701A - February 26, 2009

YAY! I have incentive to go back to Vegas. I’m glad I was able to make it before it closed at the Hilton.

6. fanboy B - February 26, 2009

this would be the only reason why I would ever go to Vegas

7. Elliot - February 26, 2009


8. Tanner Waterbury (HUGE PINK FLOYD FAN) - February 26, 2009


9. Will - February 26, 2009

Woo-hoo! Here’s hoping more TOS as in TOS and not the new stuff! I would love it if they had a proper TOS ride/tour piece. Maybe something along the lines of making a tour of the original Enterprise on a holodeck(you stand in line outside the TNG holodeck doors, it has the computer “load” the program, the doors open and you walk onto the bridge of the classic E, a-la Relics, then take the turbo to perhaps the deck sickbay is on, then to the shuttlebay and finally to some neat visual trickery for an exit to appear someplace). I can’t wait to see what they do this time around!

10. Chadwick - February 26, 2009

Third trip to Vegas for this Canadian and I was lucky I finally went through it in October of 2006. I did every attraction, ate and drank at Quarks. It will still a ton of fun for me but I can see how lackluster it got after 10 years. I am happy it is re-opening and hopefully will get an update with regards to the “rides,” the “experience,” maybe a larger area to offer more. After seeing what the Star Trek Exhibition had to offer, I think it should be incorporated with the experience.

ps Vegas is awesome by the way, the sights, the food, the booze, the clubs, and the women. Even though I am sad to go, I always leave Vegas with a big ass smile on my face ;)

11. jesustrek - February 26, 2009

Greatttttttt ¡¡¡¡

12. Clinton - February 27, 2009

Welcome back, ST:TE!

13. Ciarán - February 27, 2009

FINALLY! Some day I can really visit The Experience!!! I thought my chances were dead when it closed. I really hope they reconstruct the Enterprise-D bridge. I know a lot of people want to see more TOS stuff there, but for me, I grew up on TNG, so standing on that bridge would be so overwhelming.

14. Paul B. - February 27, 2009

I agree with Will @#9 about needing more TOS in ST:TE. I’ve never had any desire to visit Quark’s Bar or anything from the TNG/DS9 era, so ST:TE doesn’t draw me.

But I don’t agree about a holodeck simulation of the 1701 bridge (a-la Relics). Ugh!!! That would be like the ENTEPRISE finale–a TNG episode, in fact. Why do a TNG holodeck of the TOS ship? Just give us the old bridge.

If I’m ever back in Vegas (not my favorite place), I’ll probably go to the exhibition anyway…but they won’t get my money!!! :)

15. Star Trackie - February 27, 2009

“However designs are in place for what is being called a ‘new’ Star Trek The Experience, which will be more technologically advanced and which also brings in more of The Original Series era (something lacking in the The Experience at the Hilton). ”

…music to my ears…or, rather, eyes.

Makes perfect sense to make the attraction TOS-centric as the TOS themed movie is what people will be buzzing about for the next year and beyond ( should sequels, hopefully, get the green light).

16. JT - February 27, 2009

This is the best Trek news I have heard in a long time! I went to The Experience many times and was friends with alot of the folks that worked there and they all were such a family! It will be great if they can get alot if not all of the employees to return! It will be great to see Darren and all the guys from Quarks again! Now I think that the new attraction should include TOS,TNG,DS9, and as much as I hate to say it the new Star Trek film! Quarks and I suggest a recreation of 10 Forward from TNG. It needs to be like the original but better and but better! thats what I think anyway!

17. I'm dead Jim - February 27, 2009

Maybe CBS got a big fat stimulus check for The Experience. :-) I saw it at the Hilton a few years ago and glad to see it return.

18. JT - February 27, 2009

One of my best memories from The Experience besides the Trek coventions held at the Hilton was watching the Shatners roast at Quarks! Good times!

19. T.U.M. - February 27, 2009


20. T'Cal - February 27, 2009

Star Trek: The Experience: The Next Generation!

21. MORN SPEAKS - February 27, 2009

Great News!!!

22. The TOS Purist aka The Purolator - February 27, 2009

YES!! I agree with #9 and #14 – bring on the TOS!! They should have done that in the first place – this is fantastic news!!

23. Daoud - February 27, 2009

If they’re smart, they buy into ST:NV:Phase II and James Cawley’s group’s raw material and build something like this downtown there where space is a lot cheaper, and a lot more available…

Imagine a full bridge set that could be “rented” anytime by groups to make their own fan films. That would be a Star Trek Mecca for Trek clubs around the country to come out and spend a day and shoot a super memento. :)

Here’s hoping they get as many of the staff back together again and involved. The BEST part of ST:TE at the Hilton wasn’t as much the sets, but the people. They were superb.

24. SerenityActual - February 27, 2009

The Experience was always on my list of things to do when I went to Vegas. I’m glad it is returning, and cannot wait to check out the new design!

25. Andy - February 27, 2009

I’m glad I will be able to toast the new film with a gaggle of Klingons and a round of “Warp Core Breachs” this May!

26. sebimeyer - February 27, 2009

Awesome news, indeed.

Can’t wait to hear about the details. Let’s just h ope they aren’t doing it on the cheap but properly.

27. Capt Mike Of The Terran Empire - February 27, 2009

Ok. I can’t wait to get my faveroite Drink. Warp core breach. I love there food as well. Always fun to argue with the fereengi about the price i paid for admission. I hope they have the rides of the Tng and Borg and add a new one for Tos and have a ride for all of the shows. That way we can get a full and fun filled visit for all the Trek incarnations. From Tos to Ent.

28. Stef* - February 27, 2009

Can someone tell me, what Music is used for this video?

29. Anthony Thompson - February 27, 2009

The wait is (almost) over.

30. Dirty AT-AT - February 27, 2009

Sweet, never got to the original. Maybe i will have to make a trip to this one.

31. John from Cincinnati - February 27, 2009

“The Experience, which will be more technologically advanced and which also brings in more of The Original Series era ”


32. Swollen Ballz - February 27, 2009

I would really like to experience the EXPERIENCE! Sounds like a real gamble to me??

33. SciFiMetalGirl - February 27, 2009

Very happy to hear this news! I will be spreading the word far and wide!

Also, great footage there! Thanks, Vernon Wilmer! Looking forward to more!

34. Lt. Bailey - February 27, 2009


My period of morning will be over once I get into Quarks and have (again) my first drink of Tranya to celebrate.
I left Quarks for the last time on Sunday of the 2008 ST CON, said good bye to Jason & his wife Naomi Joy and walked up those stairs with Tranya in hand. At that time I thought we would never see some thing like this again.
Our friends Jerry & Francine have kept up on any news and stayed in touch with the employees just in case, little did we know that we have a new incarnation of STTE. I like to think that Jerry’s dedication on spending 55 nights in a row in Quarks until it closed helped.
Whatever they may have more or less TOS or new Trek, it does not matter. I will not speculate on if it is going to good or bad as this point. I will wait until I walk through the front door or transporter platform, settle down in a seat at the bar, order a Tranya, Mind Meld, Borg Sphere, Systems Overload, Borg Queen (caramel version) or Romulan Ale.
I will once again enjoy the stimulation, relaxation, interesting conversation and pleasant association of my fellow ST fans, regardless of the era of TOS, TNG, DS9, VOY, ENT or TREK 2009. We will have a place to hang out in an atmosphere where we are all equal and comfortable, not like those phoney Ultra Lounge places. See you all there!

35. THX-1138-The Horn Xpressionist - February 27, 2009

If you are a Trek fan, this was the place to be. I enjoyed every minute I spent there, even when I was waiting in line. At least in a line at the Experience you could start up a Trek related conversation with a complete stranger and make a friend instantly. It was an immersive experience and I was sad when it came to an end because I thought that I couldn’t share it with my kids, who were just becoming tremendous Trek fans. Now I know that they will have a chance to go see this wonderful place.

And that’s a cool vid, Vernon. I hope they hire back the old crew. My friend Anita needs a gig.

36. Kayla Iacovino - February 27, 2009

Yes! I love to hear news about the reopening of ST:TE. It’s the Trekkie Mecca.

37. Will - February 27, 2009

Re: 14. Paul B. – February 27, 2009

But I don’t agree about a holodeck simulation of the 1701 bridge (a-la Relics). Ugh!!! That would be like the ENTEPRISE finale–a TNG episode, in fact. Why do a TNG holodeck of the TOS ship? Just give us the old bridge.

haha, I can absolutely see your point. I was just trying to figure a way to fit it in with the existing TNG/DS9 themed bits.

Another way I’d love to see it is to have an entire section made up to look like a Starbase(with a big projection screen, or one of those new “glasses-less” 3d screens showing ships outside). Then you walk down a docking ramp and into a corridor on the Enterprise(to build suspense), take a turbo-lift(a-la the existing experience turbo), and when it opens, you hear the classic sounds of the bridge and a Starfleet “Historian” greets you and tells you about the classic Constitution, does a trivia thing about Kirk and the crew, or something. With that, they could connect it to the museum bit(basically, make the TOS Enterprise like a museum ship at the Starbase like a visiting exhibit).

Ahh, the dreams. Of course, I always hoped when I was younger and the Experience had opened, that someone would open a fully Trek themed hotel(something along the lines of a Starbase with sections that would be as if you were staying on a Starship instead of the base itself(ie, “You’ll be staying in cabin 418 on the Enterprise. You want to take this corridor to the docking ramp and take Turbolift 4 to deck 16 once onboard.”)

Now THAT would be a Star Trek Experience. *sigh* If only Trump were as big a geek as I…

38. Scifigirl - February 27, 2009

Yay!!! *jumps with joy*

I’ve been wanting to see this for years and it broke my heart when I heard it was closing. And now my dream will actually come true… :D

39. VZX - February 27, 2009

I hope there wil be a TOS version of a ride…maybe a fully interactive bridge.

40. Darth Pinche - February 27, 2009

Yes! As long as I can drink a Warp Core Breech with Klingons walking around, I’ll be happy.

41. Frederick - February 27, 2009

Fans need a place they can go to be a part of the Star Trek universe, and this is the closest to it. Glad it’s returning, but wish they would find a stand-alone location and keep it open forever!

42. Mr. curtis - February 27, 2009

is Lisa Blake coming back too?

43. Dr. Image - February 27, 2009

Made my Friday! Yay!
Anthony- At some point, there should be a “Trekmovie Meetup Weekend,” or something!

44. ARGUS - February 27, 2009

Live long and PROSPER!!!!!!!

45. STEXP - February 27, 2009

See more Star Trek The Experience at:

46. Lisa Bailey - February 27, 2009

r.e #34 LT Bailey
I, too, will be grateful for the re-opening as I will get my husband back. I hate seeing him in such grievous mourning. It pains me to my core. Please, please, please hurry this along!!!


The Wife of LT Bailey

47. Lebbeus - February 27, 2009

I do hope we can Experience Abrams’ vision. Perhaps some Vulcan apartments, a Starfleet library, the new bridges.

48. Vernon Wilmer - February 27, 2009

I’ll ask her tonight, #42.

49. Lisa Bailey - February 27, 2009

Vernon: Loved your video; anxiously awaiting the remainder of the series.
Will you have it for sale at some point?

Working Within Normal Parameters,

The Human Lisa from California
and her Human Mate, LT Bailey

50. Gary - February 27, 2009

I was married at the experience. I am looking forward to returning to celebrate my anniversary.

51. Heather Taylor-Nichoson - February 27, 2009

Great! I am glad there will be something of Trek to see, especially if it’s geared towards more of the original series. I have been trying to find out about the Star Trek Exhibition that is supposed to be touring the US over the next 5 years, but there is little or no info on that one. So Vegas it is then, especially next year as I will be 50 in November 2010, and would love to celebrate by seeing this.

52. BeowulfCO - February 28, 2009

Awesome! This is the best Trek news story I have read in quite some time. My wife and I were very disappointed that we never had a chance to go out to the original Star Trek: The Experience before they closed it down – now we may get our chance, albeit in a different form. I would absolutely LOVE to see a classic TOS bridge set replica for the new Experience, IMHO I think that would rock to the Nth degree. Woot! To Vernon; I loved your video and I am avidly looking forward to seeing the other installments as they come along.

53. DesiluTrek - February 28, 2009

Recreate Desilu Stage 9 in full. I’ll donate my Burke chairs to help.

54. Vernon Wilmer - February 28, 2009

This isn’t something I can sell, Lisa Bailey, it’s for sharing with the whole world until the copyright ninjas kill me and remove it from the internet. Thanks for your interest though!

55. Treknut - February 28, 2009

Outstanding video production. Brings me right back to my years on the bridge of the Enterprise (see URL below) with my Imzadi. It also reminds me of the often talked about relationship between my second in command and a certain male Andorian posted at the station. LOL

Seriously, so glad everyone remains enthused about the Next Generation of The Experience. We plan to be in LV in May, 2009 to celebrate the rebirth of Star Trek with friends with or without the official opening. Besides, after a warp core breach or two, we won’t care where we are.
Thrusters at station keeping until then.
Brad & Kate

56. Dom - February 28, 2009

So will ST:TE bulk up with any stuff from the new film?

57. Will - February 28, 2009

Re: 54

I sincerely hope that, if they do, they just stick it on the timeline as an alternate universe and, at most, have a temporary display of stuff from the new movie.

58. Will - February 28, 2009

Uh, my bad, that should’ve been 56, not 54 in my last post.

59. T'Cal - February 28, 2009

My hope:
1. The Experience has an over look from TNG/DS9/VOY’s era.
2. Three interactive rides. One based on STXI, another on post-NEM TNG, and a third on VOY.
3. A shop with props, toys, DVDs, jewelry, clothing, mugs, glasses, etc.
4. Two restaurants. Quark’s that is up scale (Mmmm! Flaming ribs of targ!) and a second that looks like TOS’s mess hall, maybe a cafeteria that is more family friendly.
5. Two theatres in the theme of ENT. One an IMAX showing all 12 Trek movies in rotation and a smaller one with showing episodes from the five series in rotation.

60. Thomas - February 28, 2009

I’m nervous about the TOS-centricity here, but still looking forward to this. The DS9 theme is what tied the whole place together. As a space station, it’s the only logical Trek locale to stage dining and shopping, as well as meeting interesting aliens, and it’s a fine point of departure to adventures into space and time. The Experience was always balancing a fine line between being a Trek-attraction, and a “real” place. Obviously the museum and gift shop merchandise had to recognize the Trek TV shows, but the point of the attraction was that the Trek universe was real and you had just stepped into it. If the new place just looks like a collection of sets from TOS (or the new movie, or TNG, or any other show), it will just emphasize the fact that Trek is not real, which isn’t the spirit of Star Trek: THE EXPERIENCE.

61. VIDEO: Star Trek: My Experience Documentary Trailer | Blog of Much Holding - February 28, 2009

[…] It was recently announced that the Star Trek Experience tourist attraction, closed in September of last year, will be reopening in early May at a new location (and with much less than the old attraction, at least at first). I’m looking forward to visiting it, as my exposure to it last year was brief and in the last month it was operating… […]

62. TrekGuy - February 28, 2009

They will have their work cut out for them if they put it in Neonopolis. It’s a virtual wasteland despite being across the street from the Fremont Experience and only a few years old. People just don’t want to go over there. Let’s hope that they do a good job promoting it.

63. Jim Nightshade - March 1, 2009

And so the Adventure Begins again….Yahoo! I also worry about so many remarks saying the New Experience better be full of TOS….It was not designed to be that way….Obviously Paramount is adding more elements and changing some things….but it will still primarily be TNG since the settinig is DS9 and a TNG Time Station….soooo there is NOTHING wrong with that….Too many dont remember how Big TNG was….MUCH MORE POPULAR THAN TOS ever was….Now with JJS new movie who knows about the future….but anyway thats why its TNG that is what was popular when it was made. I love all the star treks and was a kid when the original was on tv and I fell in love with it….before syndication….It just doesnt make sense for a bunch of people in TOS uniforms or a TOS ride there….I was always ok with visits from TOS time periods and costumes but TOS was not part of the time or technology for the Experience so I agree with the earlier comments to just add a bunch of stuff will detract from the REALITY of the experience and Vernon and all the great cast and crew and sets did to help convince you that you were in the Star Trek Universe….so how to get around that??? I dunno…..maybe some ROMULAN guy screws up the timeline and ohhh….nevermind…

Hey Vernon..I loved the trailer!!! Cant wait to see the rest….I also loved the shots of April in there! Is there any way we can DOWNLOAD your episodes?? I have many videos of the Experience from UGly COuch et al including a 2 disc dvd I just got from E BAY which was soso quality wise and your series looks TONS better than that….and shows more like the opening ceremony to contrast with the closing etc….anyway….I have put most of these on a memory card loaded onto one of my PSPS for watching over and over….Id luv to download your episodes. You have a unique perspective from working there….I hope April is doing well..last I heard from her via e mail around nov she was teaching at the college and keeping herself very busy….anyway Thanks for the episodes and your comments….when Sheri and I were at the experience 2 weeks before closing to say goodbye to you guys I never thought it would be coming back so soon….nice to hear the official paramount word now!

64. TANcast 039 - Tim’s Got a Yeast Infection | TANcast - March 2, 2009

[…] 7) Article about the Return of Star Trek the Experience:… […]

65. Trevorj - March 3, 2009

Go ST:TE! I’ll see you there, Vernon and Thomas!

66. iGoByDoc - March 3, 2009

Great news! Thanks for the post! I have been monitoring the web regularly to see any news on the re-opening!

My son and I went to Las Vegas for the last 2 days of operation of ST: The Experience… and watching Vernon’s video brings back the memories of when the final curtain fell.

I am looking forward to the re-opening, and hope to get there as soon as I can after it opens so I can have myself a couple of Warp Core Breaches!

I certainly hope that the original cast such as Vernon are offered their jobs back!

Vernon, your video preview looks simply amazing! Looking forward to seeing the series!

See you all in Vegas!


67. Gerry L - March 5, 2009

Hello everyone. We’re baaaaaaaaaaaak.
It will be great to see all of you again at the new digs. That is if they ever get started building it. Lots of stories, but no construction as of yet. But, contracts are signed and that’s great to hear.
I’m not going to make a bunch of suggestions on how they should do it. I love all star trek and will be greatful just to have it back.
So let’s all look forward to tipping a few at Quark’s once again.
Yee haa
Hey Vernon, great stuff. Francine and I Look forward to seing the rest of it.

68. harrydog - April 16, 2009

No news guys? Been nearly 6 weeks, what’s the scoop?

69. mariob - August 14, 2009

almost half august, no news :-(

70. Albert Salmon - May 17, 2011

I’m a big fan of startrek and I went to the Startrek Experience at the Las Vegas Hilton and I went there about ten times.

As for the for the new Startrek Experience I see no signs of constuction and I Hope it is going happen eather when next movie comes out or before then. The new movie comes out next june of 2012 is represented by Gorilla Nation. Please contact Gorilla Nation for ad rates, packages and general advertising information.