Are cannabis lounges a great idea or just a gimmick? Here’s what you need to know…
Before the end of the year, cannabis lounges could make their way to Sin City – Las Vegas, Nevada.
On May 1, in a 4-1 vote, the Las Vegas City Council passed an ordinance that will allow retail cannabis shops to apply for special permits to open up lounges. Cannabis customers will be able to buy and use marijuana in the same location.
There are some restrictions. These operations need to be at least 1,000 feet away from casinos and schools, and there will also need to be air control plans that prevent smoke from getting out.
Also, alcohol will not be allowed in the lounges.
I’ve previously written that I’m not the biggest fan of this concept. I don’t think the industry needs “bars” for cannabis. It could encourage overconsumption and impaired driving, which is especially an issue considering that there still needs to be work done to create an accurate cannabis breathalyzer, which I talked to you about last week.
Ultimately, I don’t think there needs to be pot lounges for the industry to succeed.
However, I do think this solidifies one thing, and it’s going to benefit a wide range of those involved in the cannabis industry.
Why Cannabis Firms Have to Be in Las Vegas
The biggest takeaway from this news is that Las Vegas has now become the premier cannabis tourism destination in the country, and it will impact both dispensaries and cultivators.
It’s a huge market right now, with $425 million worth of recreational sales in just the first year of legalization. In comparison, Colorado sold $303 million in its first full year of legalization, Washington sold $259 million, and Oregon sold $241 million.
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So if a company has national ambitions, it needs to be in Las Vegas. Less than two weeks into full legalization in Nevada, the 47 retailers licensed to sell cannabis were running out of product to sell.
With such a large demand because of the amount of tourists the state attracts, cultivators will have plenty of work to do to keep cannabis on the shelves of dispensaries, especially considering that consuming it will now be easier for out of town visitors who were previously restricted in where they could consume marijuana. If you want to learn more about how to find the best cultivators through NICILytics, you can click here to identify the best of the best.
In terms of branding, cultivators have to be in Nevada dispensaries and make attractive products.
Purchasing cannabis in Nevada could likely be someone’s first introduction to the legal market. If a cultivator can win over a tourist in Las Vegas, they could likely have a life-long customer who will always buy that brand.
Winning over that first customer is also why it’s so important for the packaging to quickly and easily identify the benefits or differentiating factors about why someone should try that product. Whether it be that the product is organic, cheaper, or has something else that makes it special, it needs to be clearly stated and draw the customer in.
Branding is so important that I just created a thorough report about it for the members of Cannabis Insider’s Report.
In conclusion, while the introduction of cannabis lounges is newsworthy, I want you to understand the bigger story playing out.
Las Vegas is the premiere destination for cannabis tourists, and a company that wants to make it in this industry needs a presence there.
Executive Director, National Institute for Cannabis Investors
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20 responses to “What I Really Think About Cannabis Lounges”
May 07 2019