AOL Goes on Vegas Vacation

America Online today expanded its AOL CityGuide network with the addition of Los Vegas as a “SuperCity.” The site leverages content from partners Vegas.com and Robin Leach’s Total Vegas Television (TVT).

The SuperCity, an expanded version of AOL CityGuide’s local coverage with integrated commerce built in, features localized editorial, user-generated content and advertising support. Vegas.com supplies content listings and integrated commerce. The travel site implemented buttons to book hotel reservations, show tickets and airfare on listings pages. It also provides a weekly video feature called “Vegas minute.”

“We’ve actually created a wonderful proposition that we believe distinguishes ourselves from competition. That will attract a lot of advertisers, and already has,” Scott Richman, vice president and general manager of AOL CityGuide, told ClickZ News.

Richman wouldn’t reveal specific advertisers but said the site has attracted interest from major hotels, aggregators, airlines and financial services companies. Beer and alcohol brands also are very interested in advertising to this audience, he said.

“We created AOL Vegas to serve both those who wish to travel there and those who want to explore this great city online,” said Richman.

The site will be promoted across AOL’s properties. Richman also said the AOL CityGuide site may also get promoted via AOL’s recently launched integrated ad campaign. Search engine optimization and a search engine marketing campaign are part of the marketing plan.

The site will be broadband enabled and feature rich media and video-enabled content, “to create a real stickiness,” said Richman. “Even people who don’t plan to come to Vegas will want to see what it’s about.”

AOL Vegas is the first of what the AOL CityGuide network calls the “SuperCity.” It was selected because it was the most searched travel destination on AOL Search. Richman said AOL is looking at a couple other cities and named Orlando as a potential SuperCity candidate.

Las Vegas reportedly receives 37 million visitors annually who generate $33.7 billion in tourism revenue for the city.

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