Caesars Entertainment Corp has offloaded its first Las Vegas property since announcing its impending US$17.8 billion merger with Eldorado Resorts, revealing on Monday that it has sold the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino to a principal of real estate giant Imperial Companies for US$516.3 million.
Under the terms of the transaction, Caesars will continue to operate the Rio for at least another two years via a lease deal in which it will pay the buyer rent of US$45 million per year. The buyer also has an option to offer a third year at which time Caesars can continue to operate the property or provide transition services.
Notably, the sale does not include the World Series of Poker brand of which Caesars will retain full ownership, with the WSOP to return to the Rio once again in 2020.
“This deal allows Caesars Entertainment to focus our resources on strengthening our attractive portfolio of recently renovated Strip properties and is expected to result in incremental EBITDA at those properties,” said Caesars CEO Tony Rodio.
“The retention of the World Series of Poker and retention of Caesars Rewards customers are all factors that make this a valuable transaction for Caesars.”
Caesars has been tipped to offload a number of its Las Vegas properties in the wake of the Eldorado agreement, while the company also announced last month that it would not pursue a bid to develop an integrated resort in Japan.