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Tropicana was profitable right up until it closed, landowner says

The Tropicana was profitable right up to its April 2 closing date, and operators didn’t close early because it was losing money, according to executives of the company that owns the resort’s land.

Asked by an analyst Friday during Gaming & Leisure Properties Inc.’s first-quarter earnings call if the Tropicana closed earlier than planned, CEO Peter Carlino said the Trop was “(cash flow) positive” when the doors closed.

“It was positive, but in order to work backwards from the first pitch in the A’s stadium, I think you’d find that the closing of the Tropicana was pretty much right on time,” said Brandon Moore, chief operating officer and general counsel for GLPI, the real estate investment trust that owns the Tropicana land and is landlord to casino operator Bally’s Corp.

“It was closed to make way for the liquidation of the assets and ultimately the demolition of the property which gets a shovel in the ground in 2025 to begin the A’s project and the integrated resort,” he said.

Clark County gave Bally’s permission last week to demolish the Tropicana, which, according to a permit issued, must occur by Oct. 20. On the property this week, workers could be seen moving furniture and mattresses from the building.

The chairman of Bally’s board of directors, Soo Kim, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal this week that an implosion is planned for September or October, giving the Oakland Athletics, the Major League Baseball team relocating to a $1.5 billion, 33,000-seat indoor stadium, plenty of time to build.

“I don’t think it was a matter of closing it early to save cost and expenses,” Moore said. “It was a matter of on-time closure and with the employees in that market knowing that the casino was closing, I think Bally’s would tell you they were having a difficult time keeping appropriate staff in there to keep that project open. I don’t think we here at GLPI had any expectation that it would be open any longer than it was.”

Bally’s has scheduled its first-quarter earnings call Wednesday.

Contact Richard N. Velotta at rvelotta@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Follow @RickVelotta on X.

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