CAESARS PALACE TOWER
Time-lapse of the Palace Tower and Forum shops was commissioned by the Perini Building Company, one of the nations premier construction companies responsible for many major hotels in Nevada. The Palace Tower, was the first of the new construction to take place since the small 22 story Forum Tower in 1979 and began a decade of renovating and reconstruction on the classic Vegas property.
The two year project, from 1995 to 1997, presented some new and unique problems because of the large expanse of the property and the many different renovations taking place at the same time. It became the first three camera shoot for our company and necessitated some innovation in how to attached our camera rigs to buildings.
The camera rigs consist of an specially designed and fabricated environmentally controlled housings and specific mounts made to attach to a particular kind of building, with controlled power and security features to keep hotel workers from accidentally shutting of the power. The cameras, in this case 16mm movie film cameras with inovelometers to control the shutter and speed, are mounted and locked down inside the housings.
The first camera was mounted on the side railing of the health club, high up on the original Roman Tower pointing west giving us a view of the back of the construction. A second time-lapse camera was mounted hanging over the roof of the same tower, slightly south, to shoot the front of the building and to capture the construction of the expansive new swimming pool and it's gourmet restaurant's unique copper roof. The second camera also afforded us a view of construction going on adding a second tower to the Rio Hotel west of the strip. A third camera was added later to the roof of the Metal Sports Pavilion Building (no longer exists), facing east to show the new building, pool and restaurants. Maintenance and servicing of this camera was of a particular problem because of it required scaling of one entire side of the massive slanted and high metal roof or a crane to do the monthly maintenance checks.
Besides the camera over the Roman Garden pool, made interesting because the sun lovers deck was opened long before construction was done on the tower, the other unique aspect of the job was the huge concrete pour. At the time, it was the largest concrete pour ever attempted, especially difficult because it was August in Las Vegas! Beginning at sunset on a summer evening to avoid the extremely hot desert temperature, hundreds of loads of concrete were brought to the site in mixing trucks that dropped off their loads in the pumper trucks to be distributed in the forms. The whole pour took over twelve hours, with laborers working as quickly as possible before the heat dried the concrete and made it too hard to work. Our time-lapse cameras had to be set by hand and recalculated throughout the pour since automatic focus and automatic exposure cameras were not available in those days.
With three camera's we obtained over three hours of film on the Caesars "Palace Tower", that was edited down to a most attractive fast moving 11 minute presentation to music for Perini and Caesars final usage.