If any place could stand to have a little extra nerd, it would be Las Vegas. Back in 1992, Sin City wanted an attraction to pull visitors away from the Strip. Old school Las Vegas was gathering dust and quietly fading away. They put out the word, and ideas came in. The Gary Goddard Group recently revealed that their design for a full-scale Starship Enterprise beat out the Fremont Experience in the redevelopment competition. Now geeks would flood the city, and everyone else probably couldn’t resist checking it out.
Sadly, it was not meant to be. But it was really, really close to happening.
They were going to pull out all the stops:
The “big idea” was building the ship itself at full-scale. That was the main attraction. That being said, we also knew we would have to have some kind of “show” on board. So, conceptually, it was to be a “tour” of the ship, with all of the key rooms, chambers, decks, and corridors that we knew from the movie. There was to be the dining area for the ship’s crew (where you could dine in Star Fleet comfort), and other special features. There were also one or two interesting ride elements that we were considering including a high-speed travelator that would whisk you from deck to deck. But we were really just getting into the show aspects when everything came to a head.
After five months of hard work, the decision came down to Stanley Jaffe, the president and COO of Paramount Communications. Everyone involved assumed it would be greenlit, but Jaffe shut the idea down at the last minute stating that he didn’t “want to be the guy that approved this and then it’s a flop and sitting out there in Vegas forever.”
Though Vegas did get its brush with Star Trek with the Experience at the Hilton, that’s closed now. It was fun, but it was no full scale Enterprise. I bet you’ll never look at the Fremont lights the same way again.