Every aspect of the foodservice operation at Las Vegas’ first freestanding arena is mammoth. And yet, it’s the attention to the smallest details that makes the 650,000-square-foot, 17,000-seat T-Mobile Arena stand out. The arena, located on the Vegas Strip, hosts everything from this year’s Billboard Music Awards to concerts to the upcoming Vegas Golden Knights NHL team.
From consumer-facing technology to in-kitchen gadgetry, here are just a few of the arena’s most innovative aspects, according to Garry DeLucia, the chef from parent Levy Restaurants in charge of the arena.
Tablets attached to tables in premium seating areas allow guests to order food and drink—and even watch cable TV when there’s a lull in the action. Runners deliver the food. Servers also roam through several seating areas with tablets to offer a limited number of menu items and drinks. In either case, guests don’t wait on the check to pay; customers can swipe their credit card via the hand-held devices.
High-tech suite service
Similarly, each of the arena’s 46 suites is outfitted with a tablet. Suiteholders can order from a limited day-of event menu built for fast service. Or, they can place orders with the arena’s vendor subcontractors like Shake Shack or Chronic Tacos. A runner then delivers those orders to the suites. (Such orders are subject to a per-ticket minimum, but no extra charge.) Fans can also order team or concert merchandise, such as T-shirts and posters, through the tablets.
Beyond hot dogs and nachos
T-Mobile stocks multiple electric-powered hot-cold carts with unconventional menu items in high-traffic locations around the arena. There’s an on-trend poke cart with customizable toppings, as well as Asian dumplings, rice bowls and hot sandwiches. The arena’s gastropubs sell a popular grilled lobster roll and house-sliced charcuterie plate. Menu offerings vary depending on the event, with a focus on barbecue and smoked foods at country-music concerts, and New York strip steak and popovers for a classic-rock concert. Digital menu boards throughout allow for quick menu changes.
We’ve taken the traditional concessions menu items and have gone miles above them.”
—Garry DeLucia, chef
More on T-Mobile Arena
- Suites offer amenities such as self-order and self-pay tablets.
- T-Mobile Arena preps food in its main kitchen and stocks hot-cold carts outfitted with hand sinks before each event. To keep up, runners with walkie-talkies make frequent trips from the cart to the kitchen to restock.