Lady Luck put on ‘fast track’

The Hollywood-based developers taking over the Lady Luck hotel and casino hope to reopen the shuttered property within two years and transform a segment of downtown that’s been losing steam since early 2006.

On Wednesday, John Given of the CIM Group told the Las Vegas City Council his firm is taking over the Lady Luck from the current owners and will make it a priority to put the closed casino "on the fastest track to turn the lights back on."

It was Given’s first appearance before the City Council, and council members and the owner of a Third Street bar that has struggled since the Lady Luck closed in February 2006 gave his plans enthusiastic support.

He was there seeking an exclusive negotiating agreement between the CIM Group and the city for land that is now home to Frank Wright Plaza, which is now a small park. The agreement, which the council approved unanimously, gives CIM Group the right to buy 5.5 acres from the city to use as part of a revived Lady Luck.

In addition to calling on CIM to give the council progress reports on the project, the agreement also requires the firm to consider removing a pedestrian bridge over Third Street that connects the Lady Luck’s two hotel towers. City officials say the bridge blocks views between the Fremont Street Experience and the historic post office on Stewart Avenue that is being converted to a mob museum.

Given told the council he is happy to follow the terms of the agreement.

"I take it as an awesome task and responsibility to do this right," Given said. Later, he said breathing life back into the Lady Luck will be CIM’s top priority for the project.

"I think there is a very good chance at being able to open in 2009," Given said.

He said CIM Group will take "full ownership" of the project from Downtown Resorts, the company that bought it in 2005 then closed the casino and hotel, displacing about 700 workers. Since then Downtown Resorts, led by Andrew Donner of Las Vegas, failed to meet deadlines it set to re-open the property. Donner did not return a Wednesday call for comment. Given did not disclose a purchase price.

Besides reviving the casino and hotel, CIM Group will create a development plan for adjacent property that includes businesses that were part of the Lady Luck deal like Triple George Grill and Sidebar as well as independently owned businesses like Hogs & Heifers Saloon.

Michelle Dell, owner of Hogs & Heifers, said the casino shutdown sucked much of the life from Third Street between the Fremont Street Experience and Stewart Avenue. Dell is hopeful its revival is a step toward development of an entire street populated with, "stylish, sexy and edgy," businesses.

Hogs & Heifers and a nearby pawn shop are the only two businesses on the street that weren’t part of the Lady Luck’s outgoing ownership’s plan to revive the block. Dell said she has a 20-year lease top operate the bar in the building.

Dell hopes investment from the CIM Group, which boasts a $4 billion urban real estate portfolio, will be the boost the block needs to fulfill expectations she had when she opened her bar in July 2006.

"I’ve invested my life in this project," Dell said. "My own neck is on the line."

Bellagio, MGM Resorts International’s luxury hotel turns 20
The more than 3,000-room Bellagio hotel is situated on the site of the former Dunes Hotel. The Dunes was imploded in 1993, and construction of the Bellagio started in 1996. It cost $1.6 billion to build, making it the most expensive hotel in the world at the time. The Bellagio was former Wynn Resorts Ltd. Chairman and CEO Steve Wynn’s second major casino on the Strip after The Mirage. MGM Resorts International acquired the property from Steve Wynn in 2000. (Tara Mack/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Facial recognition software at G2E – Todd Prince
Shing Tao, CEO of Las Vegas-based Remark Holdings, talks about his facial recognition product. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former NBA player, Shaquille O'Neal, speaks about his new Las Vegas chicken restaurant
Former NBA player, Shaquille O'Neal, speaks about his new Las Vegas chicken restaurant. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Bobby Baldwin to leave MGM
MGM Resorts International executive and professional poker player Bobby Baldwin is set to leave MGM.
Caesars has new armed emergency response teams
Caesars Entertainment Corp. has created armed emergency response teams. They are composed of former military and law enforcement officials. "These teams provide valuable additional security capabilities,” Caesars spokeswoman Jennifer Forkish said. Caesars is hiring Security Saturation Team supervisors, managers and officers, according to LinkedIn. The company did not say how many people it plans to hire for the units. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas, airlines prepare for CES
CES in January is expected to attract more than 180,000 attendees. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
AGS partners with Vegas Golden Knights
AGS is the nation’s second-largest manufacturer of Class II slot machines used primarily in tribal jurisdictions. It announced a marketing partnership with the Vegas Golden Knights NHL team. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Lehman Brothers bet big on Las Vegas
Lehman Brothers collapsed 10 years ago, helping send the country into the Great Recession.
Fremont9 opens downtown
Fremont9 apartment complex has opened in downtown Las Vegas. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
Ross & Snow launches in Las Vegas
Luxury shoe brand Ross & Snow has opened in Las Vegas, featuring "functional luxury" with premium shearling footwear. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Remote Identification and Drones
DJI vice president of policy and public affairs discusses using remote identification on drones. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Drones and public safety in Nevada
Two representatives in the drone industry discuss UAV's impact on public safety. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Frontier Airlines to launch flights from Las Vegas to Mexico
Frontier, a Denver-based ultra-low-cost carrier, will become the first airline in more than a decade to offer international service to Canada and Mexico from Las Vegas when flights to Cancun and Los Cabos begin Dec. 15. (Rick Velotta/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
MGM Resorts International CEO Jim Murren addresses Oct. 1 lawsuits
MGM Resorts International Chairman and CEO Jim Murren addresses criticism his company has received for filing a lawsuit against the survivors of the Oct. 1 shooting. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
MGM Resorts International opens the doors on MGM Springfield
Massachusetts’ first hotel-casino opens in downtown Springfield. The $960 million MGM Springfield has 252 rooms and 125,000-square-feet of casino. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
MGM Resorts International prepares to open MGM Springfield
Las Vegas-based MGM Resorts International gave news media and invited guests a preview of the $960 million MGM Springfield casino in Massachusetts. The commonwealth's first resort casino will open Friday, Aug. 24. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
A Walk Through Circus Circus
It only takes a short walk through Circus Circus to realize it attracts a demographic like no other casino on the Strip: families with young children. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Morphy Auctions, a vintage slot machines seller, wants gaming license
Vice president Don Grimmer talks about Morphy Auctions at the company's warehouse located at 4520 Arville Street in Las Vegas on Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018. (Rick Velotta/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Nevada's venture capital money doesn't stay in state
Zach Miles, associate vice president for economic development for UNLV, said there’s venture money in Southern Nevada, “but trying to find the right groups to tap into for that money is different.” According to a 2017 report from the Kauffman Foundation, Las Vegas ranked number 34 out of 40 metropolitan areas for growth entrepreneurship, a metric of how much startups grow. With a lack of growing startups in Las Vegas, investment money is being sent outside of state borders. The southwest region of the U.S. received $386 million in funding in the second quarter, with about $25.2 million in Nevada. The San Francisco area alone received about $5.6 billion. (source: CB Insights)
Neon wraps can light up the night for advertising
Vinyl wrap company 5150 Wraps talks about neon wraps, a new technology that the company believes can boost advertising at night. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Nevada on the forefront of drone safety
Dr. Chris Walach, senior director of Nevada Institute for Autonomous Systems, talks to a reporter at NIAS's new Nevada Drone Center for Excellence of Public Safety, located inside the Switch Innevation Center in Las Vegas. K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
Motel 8 on south Strip will become site of hotel-casino
Israeli hoteliers Asher Gabay and Benny Zerah bought Motel 8 on the south Strip for $7.4 million, records show. They plan to bulldoze the property and build a hotel-casino. Motel 8 was built in the 1960s and used to be one of several roadside inns on what's now the south Strip. But it looks out of place today, dwarfed by the towering Mandalay Bay right across the street.
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like