Hard Rock International announced Wednesday that Joe Lupo, current President of its Atlantic City property, will run the Mirage Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas once the company completes its purchase from MGM Resorts International. Lupo will take over the role once the Nevada Gaming Commission licensing process concludes. In Atlantic City, Anthony Faranca, former General Manager, will succeed Lupo as the property's President, effective September 1.
Lupo has more than three decades of casino gaming experience. He was named President of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City in November 2018, after spending two successful years at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa. He also worked at various Boyd Gaming properties in Las Vegas and in Laughlin, Nevada, including the former Stardust Hotel & Casino Las Vegas, where he was the Director of Race and Sportsbook. He is a graduate of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Joe Lupo, the newly appointed president of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas
Hard Rock International Chairman Jim Allen, who made the announcement, said that Lupo is "uniquely qualified" to become the President of Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas. The company plans to construct "an iconic Guitar Hotel" on the renowned Vegas strip.
"As president of the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City for the past four years, Joe Lupo has achieved amazing results. Thanks to his dedication and expertise, financial results continue to outperform expectations, while our team members share an unmatched commitment to guest service and satisfaction. I am confident Joe Lupo will achieve even greater success at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas," Allen added.
Jim Allen, Hard Rock International Chairman
In Atlantic City, Anthony Faranca will be promoted to property President, subject to regulatory approval, effective September 1. Faranca is described by Hard Rock as a seasoned casino executive with extensive experience managing large gaming properties in several states including Maryland, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey.
"Anthony's deep knowledge of the Atlantic City and Northeast region is an invaluable asset to the company. We are confident that Anthony will continue Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City's legacy of success and impactful leadership in the community," Allen commented.
Anthony Faranca, the newly appointed President of Hard Rock Atlantic City
Faranca began his casino career in Atlantic City as a Guest Services Manager and was promoted through the ranks to Regional Vice President of National Casino Marketing at the four Caesars Atlantic City properties. Faranca eventually relocated to Philadelphia and was appointed Vice President and General Manager of Parx Casino in 2009.
The executive then moved to Las Vegas to join Station Casinos and served as Vice President and General Manager for the Palms Casino Resort while also managing the company's enterprise-wide strategy for Table Game operations.
He returned to the east coast in 2019 and joined the Cordish Companies as Vice President and General Manager of Live! Casino in Hanover, Maryland. In this role Faranca navigated the COVID-19 pandemic, launched a FanDuel Sportsbook, and opened a 5,000-seat event center.
The Mirage, on Las Vegas Strip
Hard Rock confirmed plans to open its rebranded Mirage casino in 2025 last month, which would see the first tribal operator on the Las Vegas Strip. Under the terms of the agreement Hard Rock reached with MGM Resorts, the latter will retain The Mirage name and brand, licensing it to Hard Rock royalty-free for a maximum period of three years while it finalizes its plans to rebrand the property.
Hard Rock, which is owned by the Seminole Tribe of Florida, said it plans to rebrand The Mirage and also build a new guitar-shaped hotel on the property. Operations of the property were sold to Hard Rock for $1.075 billion in cash last December, in a deal expected to close later this year.