Caesars Sells Iconic Harrah’s Reno For The Future Of Las Vegas

Article by : Helen Oct 12, 2020

Las Vegas: America’s very own gambling oasis in the desert is bidding goodbye to one of the strip’s most legendary casinos, Harrah’s Reno. Situated right at the heart of the Las Vegas strip, the Harrah’s Las Vegas casino covers over seventeen acres of land, or nearly two city blocks of everything from gaming, entertainment, and luxury. It offered over 2,500 rooms and suites to guests, with over 1,500 of those rooms undergoing a $140 million full tower renovation through 2017. It has been open since 1973 but was named Harrah’s Las Vegas in 1992.

Caesars Entertainment sold Harrah’s to CAI Investment for $50 million dollars Wednesday, September 30th. The deal had been in the works since 2019, but the settlement was delayed due to Covid-19. CAI Investment has a one-of-a-kind idea for the former casino to turn it into a massive mixed-use property that can have apartments, offices, restaurants, retail offerings, and a grocery store. Essentially a mini-city ecosystem right in the heart of downtown Las Vegas.

You can take the elevator down from your apartment, go straight to work at the office, take a walk down the river, then head to the gym — all within the same building. There aren’t a lot of places downtown where you can move in 200 people, provide housing that’s affordable, office space, and a place to park their car.

Chris Beavor, CAI Investment CEO

The renovated Reno City center is billed as a live-work-play destination that CAI Investments is certain is a win-win-win for the city. Las Vegas is currently in the midst of a housing crunch, is home to an NHL hockey team, and has to continue to attract not just tourism, but business to Northern Nevada and Reno.

Some planned features for the finished Reno City center include over five-hundred market-rate one or two-bedroom apartments, 150,000 feet of new office space, and over 75,000 feet of retail offerings, including restaurants, a bar, a cafe, and a grocery store. There is also an outdoor amphitheater anticipated within a park-like setting. Outdoor access is believed to be one of the keys for attracting long-term residents to the Reno City Center, as the recent Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority both listed outdoor recreation as reason number one that people like Reno. Residents of Reno City Center would also be eligible to pick and choose services such as parking, exercising in the fitness center, or pet-friendly lodging features.

As of now, Reno City Center is slated to be a strictly non-gaming living community. No gambling of any kind will be hosted on the re-opened premises. It makes sense, given the focus to serve many of the other needs of Reno, the newly renovated Reno City Center shouldn’t worry itself with competing against the other established casinos on the strip. Construction has already begun, but for those wanting to, Harrah’s will remain open through its lease, which ends in 2020. There’s still time to go and see one of Vegas’ iconic casinos with nearly 50 years of history and more entertainment options than you could pack in a month. While it certainly will be missed, its future lies in the future of Reno and will go towards diversifying a city economy that needs options to attract international business and help “the biggest little city” grow. While the plans are ambitions, a mini-city center inside the heart of downtown Reno might just be the catalyst the city needs to attract businesses and reposition the state’s economy for future growth.


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