Trump Plaza Sold At Bargain Basement Price Of $20 Million
Talk about a bargain. In what could very well be the steal of 2013, a California company just bought Atlantic City’s Trump Plaza—which cost $210 million to build in 1984—for just $20 million. The Muruelo Group, which is paying the lowest-ever price for an Atlantic City casino, plans to close the deal by May 31 and plans to rename the iconic casino.
“Trump Plaza is one of the world’s most recognized gaming resort destinations and is an integral part of the Atlantic City landscape,” Alex Meruelo, founder and CEO of the Meruelo Group told the Associated Press. “Our company is thrilled to have the opportunity to become the new owners of this property, and we are firmly committed toward establishing it as one of the elite destinations in Atlantic City and on the East Coast.”
Atlantic City just hasn’t been bringing in the money it used to. But Robert Griffin, CEO of Trump Entertainment Resorts, told the AP he hopes the deal shows the New Jersey resort can still be attractive to investors, given the right price.
“This is good news for the city, for the state, and for the Plaza,” he said. “There is still considerable interest in this market.”
Donald Trump once considered Trump Plaza one of his pet projects, but has since limited his Atlantic City dealings to just a 10 percent stake in Trump Entertainment Resorts. The sale will leave his company just one remaining casino—the Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort.
“There was a period of time when Atlantic City was the hottest place in the world,” Trump told the AP. “I got out years ago, and my timing was very good. But the world turns. They’re getting a very good location.”
But even the Taj Mahal could be sold—for the right price.
“If someone comes in and makes an offer that makes sense, our board has shown that we are willing to do the right thing for our shareholders,” Griffin said. “Blow me away with an offer, and I’ll be happy to take it to the board.“
The last few years haven’t been particularly kind to Trump Plaza as it has become the worst-performing casino in Atlantic City in terms of revenue. It’s January revenue dipped more than 40 percent from one year ago as it brought in less than $4.9 million. In fact, the casino won only about $102 million from gamblers in all of 2012—equal to what Atlantic City’s top-earning casino, the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, earns in about two months.
Other Atlantic City casinos have also gone for bargain prices as of late. Resorts Casino sold for just $31.5 million in 2010 and the Trump Marino Hotel Casino sold for just $38 million in 2011 before it became the Golden Nugget. Although the Tropicana Casino hit the market at $1 billion when its owners lost their casino license, billionaire Carl Icahn ended up buying it out of bankruptcy court for just $200 million. And although all were great deals, none “trumps” the bargain Muruelo Group got for Trump Plaza.
[Image via Flickr/wwarby]
I want more stuff like this!