Palms Casino Resort Reportedly Sold

We hear reliably and exclusively the off-Strip Palms Casino Resort has been sold.

Yes, we know to whom, and no, we can’t say yet. Half a scoop is still a scoop, so make the best of it.

All we can share is the buyer isn’t currently in the Las Vegas market. Also, it’s not a REIT or private equity fund, a welcome relief.

Palms

What a strange and wonderful journey for Palms. A new fork in the road is just ahead. No, that’s not a clue about who the buyer is, it’s just a lame analogy. Or possibly metaphor.

Palms never reopened after Las Vegas casinos were shut down on March 18, 2020 due to the COVID-19 crisis.

Palms was in trouble even prior to the pandemic.

The resort’s owner, Red Rock Resorts (Station Casinos), sunk an ungodly amount of money into a renovation ($690 million), then its Kaos nightclub and dayclub imploded right before our eyes, resulting in millions in losses.

Palms was purchased for $312.5 million in 2016.

Mid-2020, Red Rock Resorts CEO Frank Fertitta went public in an attempt to “squash” our rumors about Palms being for sale. We don’t squash easily, so we responded as we occasionally do.

All due respect.

Finally, an official announcement of the sale of Palms resort is close at hand.

No financial details of the sale are available yet, but we’d expect the sale price to be between $800-900 million. Red Rock Resorts was motivated to relinquish Palms, but it’s not a fire sale.

The new owner will reap the benefits of all the Palms improvements, without the burden of misguided decisions about nightlife and restaurants. We trust you weren’t emotionally attached to places like Bobby Flay’s Shark restaurant, as those partnerships aren’t likely to survive the transition.

Still, under new ownership and management, Palms’ best days could still be ahead.

Our usual disclaimer applies: This is an unconfirmed rumor. Things change and not all rumors pan out. Often, they do.

More news soon!

Update (5/4/21): The sale of Palms to San Manuel has been confirmed. The sale price is $650 million. The transaction is expected to close by the end of 2021. Translation: Boom.

21 thoughts on “Palms Casino Resort Reportedly Sold

  1. William Wingo

    I read your linked article about the closure of Kaos. In fact, I think I remember reading it originally. I take the liberty of quoting a certain passage:
    “The venue paid ungodly amounts of money for talent, and even on its busiest nights, Kaos failed to make a profit.
    “Marshmello, [a name that means absolutely nothing to me] for example, snagged a deal for $60 million. Cardi B [ditto] was paid $300,000 for each of her 15-minute performances. Simply unsustainable.
    “Frank Fertitta, CEO of Red Rock Resorts, the company that owns Palms, said nightclub customers ‘did not have spendable money, we didn’t see the crossover into the casino.'”
    Somehow this reminds me of some of your more recent posts about another Las Vegas property about to open with a high-end nightclub/dayclub operation. It will be interesting to see how similar the experiences turn out to be.
    Cheers.

    Reply
    1. Scott Roeben Post author

      Yeah, nobody’s really talking about it because everyone’s rooting for Resorts World, but they’re using an outdated playbook. The hope is it’s still relevant, but there’s a lot of evidence it’s not, and they could be walking into the same trap. I’ve heard they may be pushing back these high-priced residencies so they don’t have to pay for them up front. If true, that could be a sign they know there could be challenges ahead.

      Reply
  2. Allen

    Happy to see the Palms reopen. The Orleans sucks and needs serious competition.
    And as far as Bobby Flay goes: I’ve had vendors as well as ex-employees tell me that he isn’t the nicest guy and I’m really understating that.

    Reply
  3. Andrew

    Well, like it or not this place must have some sort of hex on itself. In just 20 years span everything that could happen to a casino resort heppened to the Palms. Opened with some bing bangs and went out with some huge bangs ! But the last bang has to be the loudest one for sure. Buy the place,renovate it head to toe, Corona hits,sell the place for a loss. It pretty much copies the same fate Treasure Island had, in the end Ruffin got it almost for free.
    I’m not sure what’s in store for the Palms now, if Station did’nt make it to make it work I don’t know who may do it. Probably at this point it may be more profitable to turn it into a condo.
    Back in 2001 I was living in Las Vegas and as a local I’ve always enjoyed my time at the Palms . Probably if Maloof did not put himself in stupidly greedy residential tower business he would still own the place.

    Reply
  4. JeffinOKC

    I don’t think the Fertitta brothers lost any money on the Palms. What they spent on renovation was about what they were gonna owe in taxes from the UFC sale, and this whole process was set up to offset the tax obligation. They gonna see another tax benefit when they sell the Palms at a loss and get an offset against Stations earnings. I’m guessing some of this will carry past 2025.

    Reply
  5. Michael Alexakis

    When this place opened people were raving about the video poker, it was the hottest destination in Las Vegas, the hype was off the charts. Our party of four decided to check it out on a Saturday night, yes there was video poker all over the place, very nice paying video poker, but it was so smoky we all were struggling to breath, for a brand new resort to make the El Cortez smell like The Rocky Mountains was shocking. We barely lasted 30 minutes, good video poker is not worth dying slowly for. I certainly hope The Palms addressed this ventilation problem in the renovation, its a nice place. The reputation for video poker evaporated over the years, as did the crowds. I certainly wish the new owners well, my opinion is we do not need another high roller joint, but a higher end locals joint would suit the site very nicely…

    Reply
  6. DuLac55

    I love all the disclaimers you now have to add on “rumors” thanks to the jerks at Sahara. As if the word “rumor” didn’t do it on its own. Regardless, I love all the info!

    Reply
    1. Scott Roeben Post author

      I haven’t changed anything, nor do I have to. I do want to help clarify when it’s not something that’s been officially announced or confirmed, mainly to make me look cooler when it is. And yes, the owners and management of Sahara are jerks.

      Reply
  7. David

    Nobody seems to get that the palms is a loser and that’s why it keeps getting sold, real operators dont seem to want it. Unless it is bought for a super cheap price, it will be bought and sold a again and again and again. Last time I was there, I was solicited for drugs 3 times from my car to the entrance. Never went back after that.

    Reply
    1. Michael Alexakis

      If what Scott is reporting is anywhere near correct, and I suspect it is, The Palms is not a “loser”, it is a foot in the Las Vegas door for an un-named gambling company. The money splashing around Las Vegas is significant, and its a great sign that things are going to return to normal pretty soon. Sellers are getting top dollar, the land values are strong, I expect that The Palms will do well…

      Reply
    2. project design

      Your right David….it was a arrogant place (well done interior) and very popular in early 2000’s (I knew one of the guys that owned the ghost bar,and another the Tattoo shop)…last time I went in there was 2018 (newly remodelled)….ew, triple ew!…20’s crowd and staff, and snooty…everything about the image invited me, but everything about the staff made me want to vomit..do I dare say, “bar tenders are the type that hate men (same at “The Steak House” at Circus Circus)”…..atmosphere is everything, its like the occult took over years ago!

      Reply
  8. Michael Alexakis

    The Palms and Planet Hollywood have a lot in common, both ended up having to change ownership because of failed high rise condo projects… The Aladdin was sold to a private equity firm, they re-branded it as Planet Hollywood and were doing rather well until they decided to build a high rise condo project, it’s now The Westgate, and it has had big problems. They had to sell Planet Hollywood to Caesars, unfortunately. The Palms was doing well, then they decided to build Palms Place, Maloof had to sell it. The Vdara in City Center was supposed to be condos, there is a lesson to be learned. If you build it, they won’t come, condo buyers that it…

    Reply

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