"We have been looking forward to this day with great enthusiasm," said Alex Meruelo, Principal of The Meruelo Group." SLS Las Vegas is a fantastic asset with tremendous potential, and we are thrilled to be acquiring the property. This is a lifetime dream and a rare opportunity to own a property on the Las Vegas Strip."
The Nevada Gaming Commission has approved the ownership transfer of SLS Las Vegas Hotel & Casino to The Meruelo Group, positioning the company's acquisition of the 1,616-room, three-tower resort-casino, including the W Las Vegas, from Stockbridge Capital Group. The acquisition is expected to be completed by the end of March, at which point The Meruelo Group will assume operations of SLS Las Vegas.
The Meruelo Group will add SLS Las Vegas to its gaming and hospitality portfolio, which includes Grand Sierra Resort and Casino in Reno, Nev. The Meruelo Group will become the only privately held company to own properties in both Reno and Las Vegas. The company purchased Grand Sierra Resort and Casino in 2011, quickly transforming the property into a vibrant, profitable resort-casino.
"The timing couldn't be better for this acquisition," said Mr. Meruelo. "There is approximately $10 billion of planned investment and growing energy on the North Las Vegas Strip."
After purchasing SLS Las Vegas, The Meruelo Group plans to invest a significant amount into enhancing the property, starting with the rooms, pools, casino floor and entertainment venues. The company also looks forward to becoming an active member of the Las Vegas community.
SLS Las Vegas originally opened in 1952 as the historic Sahara Hotel and Casino.