Golden Entertainment Could Make Call On Colorado Belle In 2023

Posted on: December 11, 2022, 5:28 am.

Last updated: 11 December 2022, at 06:30.

Golden Entertainment (NASDAQ: GDEN ) could make a decision on the fate of the currently closed Colorado Belle in Laughlin, Nevada next year. But the operator is unlikely to reopen the riverboat casino.

Colorado Belle
Colorado Belle in Laughlin, Nevada. Golden Entertainment may make a decision on the venue in 2023. (Image: KSNV)

In an interview with Richard Velotta from Las Vegas Review-Journalsaid Blake Sartini II, son of Golden Chairman and CEO Blake Sartini, that the operator would like to make a decision on what’s next for the Colorado Belle in 2023.

I think the reopening is probably something we would not approach again,” Sartini II said in the interview. “We were successful in moving that business to the other two properties. What that has allowed us to do now is focus on what we can do with that land.”

The elder Sartini spoke about Colorado Belle’s fate earlier this year at the company’s second-quarter earnings conference call. The CEO noted that the operator is retaining the gaming license for the riverside casino hotel while “exploring A to Z options for that piece of property.”

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Colorado Belle: Victim of coronavirus shutdown

While the vast majority of Nevada casinos reopened after the state-mandated coronavirus closures in early 2020, some have not, and the Colorado Belle is part of that group and has been closed for more than 30 months.

As the gaming licensee and property owner, Golden holds all the cards regarding the Colorado Belle’s future. The operator could demolish the venue, convert it into a non-gaming venue or sell it to a competitor. In it Review-Journal interview, Sartini II did not mention the possibility of selling the place.

It is possible that an operator looking to enter Nevada could be interested in purchasing the Colorado Belle. But under that scenario, the potential buyer would be in direct competition with Golden and Caesars Entertainment — the two dominant players in the Laughlin market.

There are plenty of options for the Colorado Belle

While Golden reopening the venue seems highly unlikely and sales talk is only speculation at this point, there are still plenty of options for what the owner could do with the Colorado Belle.

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“It’s a prime piece of land in that market. It would be nice to maybe put the event center down in that space and have an event center right there on the river. That’s also something we’ve talked about often,” said Sartini II Review-Journal interview.

Separately, Sartini II said Golden has expansion plans for its PT’s Pub brand. The operator is adding another PT’s location at the Desert Inn and Durango in Las Vegas in the second quarter, with the possibility of more venues coming online in the second half of 2023.


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