In May TrekMovie first reported that the future of the Star Trek The Experience at the Hilton Hotel in Las Vegas was in doubt after its contract ended in December. Recently we reported that talks were continuing to the end of this month, but apparently a decision has been made in the last couple of days and the contract will not be renewed. After over 10 years in operation, The Experience will close its doors in early September.
An official announcement is expected early this week, but multiple sources have confirmed with TrekMovie that the decision to close The Experience has been made. Negotiations between CBS, Paramount, Cedar Fair (owners of the Experience) and the Las Vegas Hilton went on longer than originally expected. There was hope that the new Star Trek movie coming in 2009 would help boost attendance, which has been in decline, but not all the parties could come to an agreement. Apparently the Hilton Hotel was the biggest holdout, convinced more money could be made using the space for other purposes.
Employees at The Experience are being informed today of the decision. A press release may be issued as early as Monday morning. The final date is likely to be in the first week of September, after the Labor Day weekend holiday. Although the contract for The Experience ends December 31st, Cedar Fair is required to completely vacate the premises by that time so they will need the time to clear out. No word yet on what will happen with all the rides, replicas and costumes, but all the original props and costumes will be returned to CBS.
The closure of Star Trek The Experience have no effect on the official Creation Star Trek convention being held August 6th-10th at the Las Vegas Hilton. The attraction will be up and running during the event and is likely to spur additional sales for the convention as Trekkies visit it one last time (or for those who haven’t yet checked it out, their first and only time).
Officials from CBS & Cedar Fair have not returned calls or emails yet on this late breaking story. As more information comes to light, TrekMovie will provide updates.
UPDATE: Officials with CBS have confirmed the story and say a release from Cedar Fair should be forthcoming soon.