Cosmopolitan CEO gets final approval for gaming license

William McBeath, president and CEO of the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, makes a few remarks Wednesday, Feb. 18, 2015, during an event celebrating the resort’s new ownership by Blackstone.

The Cosmopolitan’s top executive was granted final approval for a gaming license by Nevada regulators today.

CEO William McBeath appeared before the Nevada Gaming Commission seeking to be licensed as a key executive of the Strip resort he was named to lead in December 2014. McBeath, a former executive at CityCenter and other Strip properties, was approved by the Gaming Control Board two weeks ago.

He came to the Cosmopolitan as its current owner, Blackstone Group, wrapped up its $1.73 billion purchase of the resort from Deutsche Bank. McBeath told the commissioners today that with Blackstone’s ownership, he does not think the resort has “ever been in better hands.”

Since McBeath and Blackstone took over, the Cosmopolitan has reported some important achievements. The resort agreed to a four-year union contract to cover some 2,000 employees — a stark contrast to the tense relationship between the Culinary Union and the previous ownership.

Perhaps more important, though, the once unprofitable resort has recently seen two straight quarterly profits. McBeath touted the Cosmopolitan’s strong performance on the casino side and discussed the new restaurants it is bringing in, as well as plans to build 21 suites on the top four floors of its east tower.

Commission Chairman Tony Alamo praised McBeath’s work so far.

“The proof’s in the pudding: The 13 months you’ve been there, the numbers show what you’re doing,” he said.