Issue 14
December 13 - 20, 2000
Volume 1
page 2
 

Venetian Eyes Expansion
By Dave Berns lasvegas.com GAMING WIRE

LAS VEGAS, NV - Executives of Las Vegas Sands Inc. are studying the feasibility of building a 1,000-room hotel tower atop The Venetian's 10-story parking garage, although no plans have been finalized.

Venetian spokesman Kurt Ouchida said Friday the investment community is aware that Las Vegas Sands wants to add rooms to meet demand.

"But no terms have been discussed or disclosed," Ouchida said.

Word has circulated among Wall Street investors and analysts in recent days that Las Vegas Sands Inc. bosses are close to finalizing terms of a $150 million deal that would lead to the tower's construction.

Executives of Venetian operator Las Vegas Sands had been meeting with the company's bondholders seeking $120 million of new bonds to finance the project, said a source who requested anonymity.

But those talks recently ended, as the megaresort's management team turned to the Wall Street investment banking firm Goldman Sachs for a $150 million construction loan that could be drawn down over a 15-month period, the source said.

"They'd like to be able to service more of the embedded demand at The Venetian," a source said of the privately owned, publicly financed property.

The 3,036-room Venetian opened in May 1998 at a cost of $1.5 billion. Construction delays and county safety testing led to a phased opening that angered hotel guests who were forced to stay elsewhere.

Las Vegas Sands Chairman Sheldon Adelson has spoken of building a second 3,036-room tower on 16 acres of adjacent land, but company President Bill Weidner said The Venetian needs several consecutive quarters of positive results before proceeding with a second phase.

The hotel generated third-quarter room revenues of $45 million, compared with $35.5 million during the third quarter of 1999, according to the company's most recent filing with the federal Securities and Exchange Commission.

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Garden State Park Racetrack Sold - CHERRY HILL, NJ - Garden State Park, a 58-year-old racetrack hurt by declining attendance and competition from Atlantic City casinos, has been sold to a development company.

The Pennsylvania company plans to convert the 225-acre property into a complex of homes, shops, offices and hotels, the company president said December 6. Garden State will continue to run harness races until December 16.

The track's main pavilion will be converted into a community and cultural center to be used by the Cherry Hill Orchestra and civic, school and community groups. The gatehouse at the main entrance will be kept as one of the entrances into the new development.

Springfield to Take Stage in Vegas - LAS VEGAS, NV - Rick Springfield plans to try his luck in Las Vegas. The rocker and former soap opera star will take the stage as the lead in the show "EFX'' at the MGM Grand Hotel Casino. He makes his debut January 30, 2001 the same day his new album will be released. Springfield will replace Broadway star Tommy Tune, whose last performance in the $75 million production will be January 13. In "EFX,'' the star leads the audience on a journey exploring the worlds of the wizard Merlin, the showman P.T. Barnum, illusionist Harry Houdini and science-fiction author H.G. Wells.

St. Louis Casino at New Mooring Site - ST. LOUIS, MO -(PRNewswire) -- President Casinos, Inc. reopened its St. Louis casino "Admiral" on December 7 after successfully moving it to its new location 1,000 feet north from its prior mooring. The casino was closed at midnight December 4 to prepare for this move. The new location provides guests with improved parking and valet service, and better ingress/egress including improved access from Interstate 70. This site is also less susceptible to flooding than the previous mooring site of the "Admiral.''

President Casinos, Inc. owns and operates dockside gaming facilities in Biloxi, Mississippi and downtown St. Louis, Missouri north of the Gateway Arch.

Bob Anderson

Singer-impressionist Bob Anderson will return to The Stardust Resort & Casino for a special holiday engagement December 10 - 22, appearing in the Wayne Newton Theater.

Anderson, the first of the singing impressionists to star in Las Vegas, was inducted into the Casino Legends Hall of Fame in September, joining Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Liberace and other famous personalities who have made significant contributions to the gaming industry.

SHOWTIME:
8:00 pm no show on Dec. 16

PRICE:
$19.95 plus tax

For more information, call the The Stardust REsort & Casino box office at 702-732-6325.


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