Provence developer growing frustrated on second Philly casino license; MGM Resorts sells Nevada casino

TAGs: JETT Gaming, Kirby Garlitos, MGM Resorts, Nevada casino, Provence

The developer behind a proposed second casino project in Philadelphia continues to twiddle his thumbs waiting for Pennsylvania gambling officials to award a license for a second casino in the city.

Provence developer growing frustrated about second Philly casino license; MGM Resorts sells Nevada casinoDeveloper Bart Blatstein’s Provence is one of four casino proposals hoping to land a casino license in the city. The other three are the Goldenberg Group’s Market8, PHL Local Gaming LLC’s Casino Revolution and the Live! Philadelphia joint bid by Cordish Cos. and Greenwood Gaming. But Blatstein has become increasingly perturbed that no decision has been made.

“I think there are forces trying to keep the other casino license from going out and that is the frustration,” Blatstein told NewsWorks. “I do believe there is a lobbyist being paid to kill the license.”

While Blatstein remains committed in developing Provence, he also shot down skeptics who think he’s biting off more than he could chew after agreeing to a deal to buy the Pier Shops at Caesars in Atlantic City. “They are distinct and separate from each other,” he added. “We’re 100% for and into the Provence and we we’re hopeful that we will be the victors with that.”

MGM Resorts International has agreed to sell the Gold Strike Casino in Jean, Nevada to casino and slots operator JETT Gaming. The sale comes a month after MGM sold another one of its small casinos, the Railroad Pass Casino in Henderson, Nevada.

MGM Resorts Chief Financial Officer Dan D’Arrigo told the Las Vegas Review Journal that it got rid of the casino as part of the company’s plan to “review and refine” its portfolio of properties and “focus on new developments in international and regional markets”. In other words, MGM Resorts is trying to wash its hands of business it can do without so it has more capital to use in pursuing more lucrative projects overseas.

The transaction still needs the approval of Nevada gaming regulators but it’s expected to push through without a hitch. JETT Gaming is owned by Terrible Herbst, a company that already operates slot machines in 131 locations throughout the state of Nevada.

“We are pleased with the opportunity to purchase Gold Strike and the surrounding property,” JETT Gaming and Jean Ventures Manager Tim Herbst said in a statement. “We will continue to evaluate our plans for the site as we work diligently to get this transaction completed.”

The prospective new owners have not yet announced its plans for the casino.


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