It’s been a busy news week regarding the shuttered Revel casino in Atlantic City. The building’s chief engineer has called it quits and there are rumors that one portion of the property could reopen in July. Finally, Straub could already be in the market to sell the Revel but only if he can more than double his money on the deal.
Chief Engineer is “Revel’d Out”
John Lezenby, the executive director of facilities and engineering at Revel, resigned from his position on Tuesday. Lezenby stated that he was “Revel’d out” and that “It wasn’t fun babysitting an empty building. I want to be in a building that has customers.”
Lezenby had been an employee of the company since day one but moves on to greener pastures. Prior to his stint at Revel, he served as executive director of facilities at Resorts and the director of construction with Trump Entertainment.
While Lezenby’s loss is huge, it will not be catastrophic. Nine engineers remain employed by the company as well as four security guards. Lezenby claims that the remaining employees “will protect that building with their life.”
Straub Interested in Selling Revel?
Glenn Straub has only owned the Revel less than two months but is already contemplating a sale of the property, but only if the price is right. Straub told the Press of Atlantic City that the Revel was not for sale but he might be swayed if someone came up with an offer in the $200 million range.
He said, “I’ll go and sell it to international people. That’s what we need.” Straub insists that his strategy to revive the Revel hinges on high-rollers being flown or ferried into Atlantic City. With gambling venues such as Macau drying up, high rollers could be swayed to try AC if the right action was available.
Straub may already have a buyer lined up. According to a letter obtained by the Wall Street Journal regarding the issues between ACR Energy and the Revel, Polo North has a “contractual… relation” with Vincent Crandon, an investor that has expressed interest in buying the property in the past.
HQ to Possibly Reopen
Also mentioned in the Press of AC article is the possibility that the HQ nightclub could reopen sometime in July. According to the report, Polo North and IDEA Boardwalk are in mediation to reopen the property. If you remember, a bankruptcy judge allowed Straub to purchase the Revel free and clear from tenant obligations and it appears that he is willing to deal.
IDEA Boardwalk, the parent company for HQ, is one of those that were suing for tenant rights to block the sale. It is estimated that around $16 million in improvements have been made by various tenants, including HQ.
The opening HQ would be a step in the right direction for the property. It has been shuttered since summer of 2014 and originally it was estimated that it may be the fall before any part of the casino could be reopened. An official date has not been mentioned and is subject to the results of mediation.