Blackstone Group Purchases Bellagio for $4.2 Billion
It’s official — one of the most iconic buildings on the Las Vegas strip has been sold. The Blackstone Group, a company that had already displayed interest in buying the property, has bought the iconic venue for a price of $4.2 billion. This is recorded as the most expensive sale of a property to have ever taken place in Las Vegas.
MGM Resorts International made an announcement a couple of days ago, saying that the sale has closed and that the Bellagio’s real estate is now almost completely in the hands of a company called The Blackstone Group.
The terms of the deal were set back on Oct. 15, when it was agreed that the casino operator from Las Vegas would receive approximately $4.2 billion in cash, as well as a five percent ownership stake in the joint venture. According to the deal, MGM continues to operate the property and has leased it back. However, the property itself now belongs almost completely to The Blackstone Group.
The Bellagio, which is one of the most popular venues not only in Las Vegas but perhaps in the entire country, was opened 21 years ago in 1998. It currently features more than 3,900 rooms as well as a casino floor space that lays on 155,000 square feet. The entire property sits on a corner of Flamingo Road and Las Vegas Boulevard on the piece of land that is 77 acres wide.
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One of the reasons why The Bellagio has become so popular is its iconic fountain that can be remotely controlled. This attracts hundreds of tourists on a daily basis, who like to watch the fountain do its thing, especially when there’s a special choreography in place.
The property has been one of the top performers in Vegas and one of the major moneymakers for MGM. Its selling price tells it all — buying anything for $4.2 billion is definitely not a small thing to do, even in the gambling industry.
The only other casino which may be a competitor to The Bellagio when it comes to the amount of money given for the property is The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, which was purchased for roughly $1.73 billion back in 2014. However, that’s nowhere near the monster price that was paid by The Blackstone Group to acquire The Bellagio.
Not The Only Sale
Selling The Bellagio was definitely the biggest sale MGM has conducted, but not the only one as they also announced selling another of their properties called Circus Circus, which is now owned by the owner of Treasure Island, Phil Ruffin. However, Circus Circus was sold for a much lower price compared to The Bellagio — $825 million.
Now the only thing that remains to be explained is why MGM was selling the two properties in the first place. According to them, the two successful transactions paved the way for building “a fortress balance sheet,” which would help them “return capital to shareholders.”
One thing is certain, The Bellagio is definitely going to stay the same, and MGM will operate it in the days to come. Therefore, visitors will not really feel the difference, as nothing will be rebranded or changed in any way.
The only thing that changed is actually the owner, and that’s all we have to know. In other words, people who like visiting The Bellagio and enjoying everything it offers will have nothing to fear — all things they love are still going to be there, as The Bellagio is going to continue to offer some of the best hospitality services in the region.