Fertitta To Buy Hard Rock Lake Tahoe Casino
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Fertitta To Buy Hard Rock Lake Tahoe Casino

Fertitta To Buy Hard Rock Lake Tahoe Casino

Fertitta Entertainment, the same company that operates the established Golden Nugget Casino, has announced its intention to purchase Hard Rock Lake Tahoe. The casino will be purchased from Paragon Gaming. However, the exact price of the transaction is yet to be revealed.

Once the purchase has been finalized, the Hard Rock Lake Tahoe will likely be rebranded into a Golden Nugget casino. Additionally, Fertitta Entertainment is likely to give the entire casino an overhaul in a bid to breathe new life into the establishment. It is anticipated that this deal will be finalized before the end of the year.

Tilman Fertitta, the CEO of Fertitta Entertainment stated that the recent acquisition marked a milestone in the company’s expansion goals. According to the CEO, Fertitta Entertainment has always had a vested interest in the gambling market in Northern Nevada

Initially, the casino was licensed to Paragon Gaming from the Seminole Indian Tribe of Florida. Once the purchase is finalized, Hard Rock will be allowed to retrieve company items and supplies and the staff will seemingly remain unaffected by the rebrand or the acquisition.

The Hard Rock Lake Tahoe casino has a long history in the region. The casino facility first opened its doors in 1965 as Del Webb's Sahara Tahoe. The Del Webb's Sahara Tahoe then later rebranded into the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe in July 2014. When it was rebranded in 2014, the casino underwent a massive overhaul and redesign that cost approximately $60 million.

The Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe consists of 2 hotel towers that boast more than 500 hotel rooms. The casino also has several restaurants and bars, as well as a massive casino floor spanning 25,000 square feet. The debut of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino project marked Hard Rock’s entry into the northern Nevada gambling market.

Even though Paragon Gaming will be giving up the established casino, the company will still have 2 more casinos to operate in Nevada. Paragon Gaming also controls Oyo Hotel & Casino in Tropicana Avenue, as well as in the Den Las Vegas in the southwest.

Fertitta, on the other hand also operates casinos in New Jersey, Louisiana, as well as Mississippi. The owner of Fertitta Entertainment Tillman Fertitta is also the owner of the renowned basketball franchise the Houston Rockets.

This acquisition could be just the re-brand that the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe has been desperate for. Over the last few weeks, the casino hotel has been impacted by negative headlines of a shooting that took place there. According to news reports, a 32-year-old man was shot and killed at the casino’s Center Bar.

The male victim was found by deputies with a gunshot wound to the head. The victim, who has since been identified as Omar Reyes Garcia was rushed to the area hospital but unfortunately succumbed to his injuries. The authorities have already arrested 2 suspects in connection to the shooting.

Gaming revenue on the rise in Nevada

Indeed, this couldn’t be a better time for Golden Nugget to join this lucrative market. Gaming revenue in the entire state has been on the rise. 9 0f the state’s 18 submarkets generated record revenue totals including markets in downtown Vegas.

For instance, Clark County saw its gambling revenue climb by more than 11% to reach $12.8 billion. Casinos in downtown Las Vegas also saw an uptick of close to 5% compared to 2021 when they generated revenue worth $880.2 million. The Boulder Strip, alternatively, which consists of retail casinos in Henderson was the only region in the state to record a decline in revenue.

Casinos in Northern Nevada did not manage to set any new records last year. However, it is worth noting that each of the casinos in question did exceed their totals for 2021. Washoe County managed to generate an excess of $1 billion for the second consecutive year while casinos in Reno grew their revenue by more than 2% to reach $743.8 million.

It is also worth mentioning that with the pandemic long behind us, the visitation numbers in Vegas are the highest that they have ever been since the pandemic. As more and more tourists continue to arrive in Vegas by the numbers, this year should deliver record-setting totals.

In particular, the visitation numbers in Vegas reached 39 million last year, which was a boost of more than 20% compared to 2021. However, this number still trailed 2019’s pre-pandemic numbers of 42.5 million visitors based on reports by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.

December 2022 saw more than 3.3 million visitors arriving in Vegas, which was an uptick of more than 10% compared to the same period last year. In January, this number continued to grow thanks to the revived conference and convention market in the city. This is what allowed casinos in Nevada to generate more than $1 billion from punters for the 23rd month in a row.

The high revenue was spurred largely by the higher gaming revenue on the Strip. In addition to increased gambling, hotel rooms have also been recording increased occupancy rates. In January 2023, the occupancy rates grew by more than 32%, which was slightly lower compared to 2019’s numbers.

Casino operators should not expect these numbers to go down anytime soon either. Casino resorts and operators are now fully back to ensuring that Vegas weekends are packed and booming thanks to new and old residences, national concerts, as well as an array of sporting events and tournaments.

The increased focus on introducing new shows and additional entertainment including large-scale events like Taylor Swift concerns or the Grand Prix in Vegas will no doubt help to keep the number of visitors high throughout the year. This means that there are plenty of opportunities for Fertitta Entertainment to cement its place in the entertainment market.

Final Thoughts

It is going to be a while before the acquisition of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe is finalized from Paragon Gaming. This deal marks Golden Nugget’s entry into the Reno-Lake Tahoe market. As such, the future looks bright for both the punters that will benefit from a newly renovated casino and the Golden Nugget brand.

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