The Nevada Gaming Commission conducted its monthly meeting today in Las Vegas.
The issue: A transfer of interest in a gaming license held by Silver Nugget Holdings was considered for Lucky Silver Gaming LLC.
The vote: 5-0
What it means: The transfer was approved. Lucky Silver operates the Silver Nugget, the Opera House and the Lucky Club in North Las Vegas and partners with Fifth Street Gaming, which also will manage the Downtown Grand.
Gaming commissioners inquired about the Downtown Grand, and Fifth Street Gaming CEO Seth Schorr said renovations on the property are ahead of schedule.
He said he expects the property — the former Lady Luck casino — to open in the fall and reservations will be available online June 15. The property is being converted to a 650-room boutique hotel and will be the first Las Vegas property and the largest hotel to be affiliated with Choice Hotels’ “Ascend” collection.
Ascend is Choice’s high-end affiliation, which includes the Comfort Inn and Clarion brands.
The issue: Three companies appeared for final approval for different types of interactive gaming licenses. The commission considered licensing Australia-based Aristocrat Technologies as an interactive gaming equipment manufacturer. Aristocrat has a Las Vegas office and the company has been previously licensed by the state.
Las Vegas-based GambleID would focus on geolocation and patron-identification services for licensed partners.
Washington-based Aristotle International would also focus on geolocation and patron-identification services.
The vote: Each vote 5-0
What it means: The three companies are the 22nd, 23rd and 24th companies to receive interactive licensing from the state.
The issue: The commission considered Pinnacle Entertainment’s acquisition of rival Ameristar Casinos. Both are Las Vegas-based, but neither have Southern Nevada properties. The $869 million acquisition — $2.8 billion including assumed debt — was announced in December and is expected to close late in the second quarter or early third quarter. Ameristar shareholders approved the deal earlier this month.
The vote: 5-0
What it means: The commission approved the deal giving Pinnacle possession of Ameristar’s two Nevada properties, Cactus Pete’s and the Horseshu in Jackpot, on the Idaho border. The transaction also includes Ameristar’s Missouri, Louisiana, Colorado, Iowa, Indiana and Mississippi casinos.
The Federal Trade Commission is reviewing competitive issues in other states, and regulators in other states will consider the transaction in June and July. The Nevada commission is the first regulatory body to approve the deal.