Sin City Worries its Image Hurts Business Travel

LAS VEGAS (AP) - Sin City is worried that its well-honed style is crimping its business.

Born of carefully crafted slogans - "What happens here stays here" - and smiling, sequined showgirls, the image of a 24-hour adult Disneyland with free-flowing booze and casino chips is making the tourist destination seem radioactive to companies keen on not appearing frivolous as they seek government bailouts.

In the past two weeks, at least four major companies canceled
meetings worth hundreds of thousands of dollars - not because of
costs but because of appearances.

Tourism officials, already nervous after watching meeting and
convention attendance decline 5 percent in 2008, are challenging the impression that business meetings are wasteful - especially those conducted under the neon lights of Las Vegas.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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