Las Vegas’ Sahara Hotel & Casino
Plans is to Reposition Legendary Property for a New Generation of Visitors
Vegas – March 2, 2007) – SBE Entertainment Group, LLC (“SBE”), its partner
Stockbridge Real Estate Funds (“Stockbridge”) and Gordon Gaming Corporation
(“Gordon Gaming”) announced today that SBE and Stockbridge have reached
an agreement with Gordon Gaming to acquire Las Vegas’ renowned Sahara Hotel
& Casino. SBE and Stockbridge intend to utilize their extensive
redevelopment experience to reinvigorate the property and the Las Vegas
Strip. The announcement was made by SBE’s CEO, Sam Nazarian; Terry
Fancher, the Managing Partner of Stockbridge, and Gordon Gaming’s CEO,
Upon the closing of the transaction, SBE will manage the hotel and its associated food and beverage operations via its operating subsidiaries, SBE Hotel Group and SBE Restaurant and Nightlife Groups. Sahara’s casino will be operated by Larry Woolf’s Navegante Group under a lease arrangement.
“The Sahara is one of the last remaining original properties on the Las Vegas strip, and we are thrilled with the possibilities that it presents,” commented Mr. Nazarian. “Our plan is to reposition this legendary property for a new generation of travelers, while preserving its existing scale. We look forward to making the Sahara the most important property on the North end of the Strip. We are equally excited to be partnered with Terry Fancher and the Stockbridge team to make this vision a reality.”
“We are very pleased to turn over the Sahara to this fresh and exciting partnership. We trust that SBE and Stockbridge will carry on the legacy of the Bennett family in creating a premier entertainment destination for the 21st century,” noted Mr. Hummel. “We are especially thankful to our friends at Northern Trust for overseeing this process on behalf of the Bennett family.”
Added Mr. Fancher, “We are very pleased to be entering the Las Vegas hotel market in partnership with SBE. As a private equity investor, we look for a combination of factors in deciding to make a particular investment. The Sahara represents many of these characteristics. It is a property with a proud tradition of appealing to visitors from throughout the world. It is also a property that will clearly benefit from a substantial capital investment. Our operating partner, SBE, is well-suited to execute this investment given their enormous creativity and other strengths. The strong fundamentals of the Las Vegas hotel market also should help assure the success of this investment.”
Originally built in 1952, the Moroccan-themed Sahara is the Northern-most resort on the famed Las Vegas Strip. The last remaining “Rat Pack” resort, the Sahara was the setting for the original “Ocean’s Eleven” film, and has played host to nearly every big-name performer and a veritable “who’s who” of Las Vegas royalty since its opening.
The parties would like to acknowledge and thank their advisors who assisted with the transaction. For Gordon Gaming, SG Americas Securities, LLC acted as Exclusive Financial Advisor and Joint Transaction Advisor, along with CB Richard Ellis’ Global Gaming Group (Las Vegas). Gordon Gaming was represented primarily by Latham & Watkins, LLP (Orange County and San Diego) and Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, P.C. (Las Vegas). SBE and Stockbridge were represented primarily by Davis Polk & Wardwell (New York and Menlo Park), Pillsbury Winthrop, LLP (Los Angeles), Lionel, Sawyer & Collins (Las Vegas), Lewis and Roca (Las Vegas), and Kamer Zucker Abbott (Las Vegas).
ABOUT SBE ENTERTAINMENT GROUP
ABOUT STOCKBRIDGE REAL ESTATE FUNDS
ABOUT THE SAHARA / GORDON GAMING CORPORATION
ABOUT NORTHERN TRUST
|Also See:||Sam Nazarian Signs 15 Year Agreement with Philippe Starck for the Creation of a New Luxury Hotel Brand to Debut in 2008 / April 2006|
|Sam Nazarian’s SBE Entertainment Group Acquires the Le Meridien Hotel Beverly Hills; Plans to Redesign the 297 room Property / November 2005|