Neon Museum to expand with larger retail store and additional exhibit space

The La Concha’s hotel lobby was built in 1961 on Las Vegas Boulevard. The building was sliced and trucked north to serve as the Neon Museum’s entrance and gift shop.
Photo: Christopher DeVargas

In October 2012, the Neon Museum expanded into a new reception and office space housed inside the clamshell-roofed building that formerly served as the lobby of the La Concha Motel. Now, just a few weeks’ shy of the repurposed La Concha’s fourth anniversary, Neon Museum is growing again: Its offices are giving way to a 1,300 square-foot museum store, run in partnership with Vegas-based Marshall Retail Group (MRG).

Plans call for demolition of the current offices to begin “soon after we move,” Neon Museum president and CEO Rob McCoy says. The offices will relocate to temporary quarters at the former Las Vegas City Hall Annex thanks to Zappos, which is picking up the cost of the short-term lease. The temporary space will be called NE10 (neon’s atomic number) and will also feature gallery shows curated by the Neon Museum in conjunction with Zappos and the Contemporary Arts Center.

“We’ve been in discussion with MRG and Zappos since May,” McCoy says. “From the get-go, they saw the value of our mission as a museum and their ability to help us increase our reach and visibility—not only in Las Vegas, but also globally.”

MRG, which also runs a number of gift shops across the Valley, will increase the amount of Neon Museum merchandise it carries in its stores. McCoy isn’t aware if there are plans to sell Neon Museum merch on, but he says the museum is “open to that discussion.”

The new museum shop is expected to open by Christmas. And perhaps by then, the Neon Museum might see yet another growth spurt: “By the end of the year, we hope to announce a major expansion of the museum, including an indoor gallery, a neon fabrication area and additional meeting, exhibit and office space,” McCoy says.

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