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Walgreens-occupied complex near Strip sells for $57M

Updated February 26, 2022 - 9:34 am

During the mid-2000s real estate craze, when developers drew up plans for waves of high-rises in Las Vegas, one was penciled in across from the Sahara hotel.

“In Las Vegas, size does matter,” a news release said of the Ivana Trump-branded project.

The skyscraper, like most from that era in Southern Nevada, was never built. But a project that was later constructed on the site has now changed hands.

A Walgreens-occupied commercial complex at the northeast corner of Las Vegas Boulevard and Sahara Avenue recently sold for $57 million. It spans 37,499 square feet and is 42 percent occupied, according to brokerage Colliers International.

The drugstore chain is the building’s only tenant. According to a brochure for the complex, Walgreens’ lease runs through spring 2040.

Colliers announced the deal last week, saying it represented the seller. The purchase, by Kingsbarn Realty Capital and developer Eli Applebaum, closed Feb. 14, property records show.

Drugstores on the Strip are known for slinging food, booze, shot glasses and more, and, given the masses of tourists walking around, it’s a big business. Walgreens and CVS locations on Las Vegas Boulevard book huge sales numbers, real estate brokers have said, and landlords have paid big dollars to own the properties.

The latest to sell is not a standalone drugstore, nor is it technically on the Strip, being north of Sahara Avenue in Las Vegas city limits.

But it’s across from the famed casino corridor’s north edge, an area seeing its most activity in years. And it’s at a busy intersection earmarked for a pedestrian bridge that could funnel more people to the complex.

In an interview Friday, Kingsbarn CEO Jeff Pori pointed to the uptick in activity along the north Strip, such as last year’s opening of the $4.3 billion Resorts World Las Vegas and the scheduled debut in late 2023 of the 67-story Fontainebleau Las Vegas.

Pori also said the new pedestrian walkway — envisioned as an elevated loop around the intersection — would improve traffic flow and walkability.

The city of Las Vegas unveiled plans for the bridge in November, saying the project is expected to be finished in late 2024.

For now, the new landlords plan to lease available space in the complex and replace the existing electronic billboard out front with a big 4D sign, which Pori said would feature video that “looks like something’s jumping out at you.”

Nonetheless, past plans for the site called for something a lot bigger than what is there today.

According to published reports, an Australian duo unveiled plans in 2004 to build a condo tower there called the Summit. By 2005, Donald Trump’s ex-wife Ivana Trump had partnered on the project then being called Ivana Las Vegas.

City records showed the proposed tower would have been 73 stories; press releases described Ivana’s project as 80 stories.

Either way it would have been huge, though ultimately it wasn’t built.

The roughly 2-acre plot was sold in 2007 for $47 million. The economy soon crashed, and the site changed hands in 2010 through the foreclosure process, property records show.

According to Colliers, the Walgreens-anchored complex was built in 2015.

A drugstore isn’t as flashy as a luxury high-rise. But no one has built a residential skyscraper in Las Vegas for more than a decade, and, as the recent sale shows, there’s still plenty of money to be made from toothpaste and the like.

Contact Eli Segall at esegall@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0342. Follow @eli_segall on Twitter.

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