Hakkasan Group, Las Vegas’s leading nightlife company, has laid off nearly all of its workforce. 1,600 employees have suddenly become unemployed. News of this comes in addition to an employee testing positive for COVID-19.

The group operates Hakkasan Nightclub at MGM Grand and Omnia Nightclub at Caesars Palace. Senior management staff remains employed while the rest seek out unemployment and severance. Chief Financial Officer, Michael Ryan-Southern, issued the terminations on Friday via email with the following message:

“Unfortunately, while we have tried to save costs in as many places as possible, we also have to initiate layoffs as a further cost-cutting measure. Regrettably, because your position in the company is dependent upon the operation of the venues, you have been selected for permanent lay off effective March 21, 2020.”

Based on their time with the company, that dictates their severance pay. 1.5 years gets you one week, with up to four weeks for more than 3.5 years. Current benefit coverage will last through the end of this month.

Hakkasan Group also maintains Jewel Nightclub and Liquid Pool Lounge at Aria. Plus, they even have Wet Republic Ultra Pool and Level Up at MGM Grand. Wet Republic recently underwent a multimillion-dollar renovation for this summer’s pool season. Now, it seems tourism will have to wait.

All decisions have been painful to make but with an attempt to secure a long-term future of the business according to the CFO. I think he speaks for everyone in the industry when he says that these conclusions and deliberations have been regrettably made with a heavy heart. No one expected this to spread as manically as it did.

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Hopefully, this impact is temporary and they can get back to programming for the rest of the year. It certainly is an interestingly devastating time to be alive right now.