With the opening of Resorts World approaching June 24, Zouk Group, the global lifestyle company with establishments that span across nightlife, entertainment and dining sectors, is a rising star within the new galaxy forming on the Strip. Guiding that light is a group of some of the world’s best hospitality minds. One such player is Jared Garcia, director of social experience and talent for Zouk Group at Resorts World Las Vegas—with venues including Zouk Nightclub, Ayu Dayclub, RedTail Social Gaming Bar and Famous Foods Street Eats. Garcia has been helping bring to life a dream that seems too impossibly big to harness, but has somehow taken shape in the Nevada desert. CELEB talks with Garcia about the journey to this stage of his life, what it’s like to be helping craft the world’s newest resort destination and how the team is filling it with all the grandeur the world expects.
The Journey to Resorts World
Garcia’s career in Las Vegas began at Wynn. The Salt Lake City kid saw his dreams beginning to take shape when he scored an entry-level job at Tryst Nightclub as a promoter. The young talent worked his way up the ladder as a junior and senior host at XS Nightclub and Encore Beach Club, before becoming a promotions manager in 2010. Garcia then became director of lifestyle marketing for Wynn Nightlife, with a focus on artist relations and assisting the talent programming team.
“One of the most memorable moments in my career was assisting with booking XS’s first major headliner, DeadMau5. I also coordinated several notable celebrity events such as Sofia Richie’s 21st birthday celebration with her pal Kylie Jenner and other various festivities with names like Gigi Hadid and Nick Jonas,” Garcia shares. I’m very proud of my accomplishments and the knowledge I’ve gained over the last 14 years in the nightlife industry.”
Choosing to join Zouk Group was a pivotal moment for for Garcia, as it was time for him to start the next chapter of his blossoming career. “When I was presented with the opportunity to work for Zouk Group, it was an easy ‘yes.’ This was a chance to bring something completely new and exciting to Las Vegas and create truly incredible experiences from the ground up. Beyond the thrilling prospect of opening the newest resort on the Strip, I’ve worked with many of the Zouk team members in my past life and knew I would be in good company. Ronn Nicolli, vice president of nightlife and lifestyle marketing at Resorts World Las Vegas, was the first person to take a chance on me in my career and I’m so grateful he did so again in this position. We have a great working relationship and I couldn’t pass up the chance to work with him again on this new project.”
Now that Garcia is a member of the executive leadership team for Zouk Group, he works on nightlife projects and celebrity events for Resorts World Las Vegas. Zouk Group recently unveiled its lineup of talent, including Zedd, Tiësto, Blondish, Zhu and DJ Snake, among many others. “My role expands property wide—I’m currently working on projects for the resort’s art program and oversee the talent department for Zouk venues as well as coordinate celebrity events throughout the property.”
What It’s Like Working to Create The Phenomenon That Is Resorts World
But what is it like showing up to work, looking around, and seeing the awesome presence that is Resorts World? Garcia explains, “Opening the first resort on the Las Vegas Strip in over a decade makes every day exciting. I can’t wait to show guests what we have in store and how amazing this property and its nightlife venues are. Seeing this project come together and building the foundation has been a career highlight for me.”
Garcia isn’t making this experience for guests happen alone. He describes his team as a collaboration of some of the best minds in the industry, creating the incredible. “Our team is extremely unique in the fact that it blends the ideals and perspectives of nightlife veterans from top markets. For example, Andrew Li, CEO of Zouk Group, has years of experience in the industry, spearheading one of the most successful nightlife brands in Asia. He provides incredible insight on this project and brings knowledge that someone exclusively in the U.S. market may not have. We also have a collection of local industry veterans, who have worked with several of the top nightlife venues in the city. This collaboration has helped us build something that will change the city’s nightlife scene as we know it.”
Although it’s all but written in the stars that Resorts World will be an enormous success, there are challenges to Garcia’s job. The Zouk Group maven explains that one challenge is building brand recognition in the United States. Although the hospitality giant is well established in Asia, the challenge is to now build the brand in America and prove to people that Zouk is here to make a presence. “We’re working to make a big splash and have to create everything from arrival experiences and music lineup to events and programming, all from the ground up. Our goal is to show the Las Vegas market how incredible Zouk Group is and make the brand a household name in the U.S. nightlife and entertainment industry.”
What Garcia Thinks of the Future
It may be hard to see past June 24 and the grand opening of Resorts World, but Garcia nonetheless believes in the future of Las Vegas and the evolution of nightlife as it’s occurred over the past decade. “The nightlife industry has changed over the last few years, and we are going to bring a new, fresh style of nightlife and entertainment to the Las Vegas market. We’re expanding beyond the traditional nightlife experience and developing a full nightlife ecosystem with social dining, gaming and more, as well as programming the nightlife spaces with unique activations and amazing talent lineups.”
Garcia adds, ” I would love to eventually see an NBA and MLB team in Las Vegas. Also more things to do off the Strip since the majority of my time is spent on the Strip.”
When thinking of the future, Garcia gives a nod to the past, acknowledging his mentors Ronn Nicolli and Jessie Waits. “Both have worked with me since very early stages of my career and provided me with opportunities to learn and grow. They have invested in me both personally and professionally and I am extremely thankful for that,” he says,
The Zouk Group Dream and Resorts World Promise
Garcia wants people to understand the Zouk Group brand. “Zouk Group is known for being a pioneer in the nightlife industry, propelling the dance music movement in Singapore. The partnership with Resorts World Las Vegas will bring Zouk Group’s world-class entertainment and dining concepts to the United States for the first time, and I’m so excited to be a part of it.”
And Resorts World’s Zouk Nightclub, and their other venues, bring something to Las Vegas that people will need to see to appreciate in its entirety; “Zouk Nightclub will be the most technologically advanced venue on the Strip—you really have to see it to understand just how much it elevates the club experience,” he says.
For now, Garcia is understandably focused on getting through June 24 and watching the dream unfurl in the summer heat. He’s not alone in that anticipation, the world is watching eagerly to see what the Resorts World experience is like, once stepping through the Zouk Nightclub doors. With a team of talent like Zouk Group has brought to bear, they’re setting the bar very high for the future of Las Vegas.