Laguna Development buys Louisiana casino hotel

Kicks Entertainment, a division of Laguna Development Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of the Pueblo of Laguna, is buying the Isle of Capri Casino Hotel Lake Charles in Westlake, La., from Isle of Capri Casinos.

The acquisition is priced at $134.5 million, and Laguna is purchasing the property as a means to expand outside of New Mexico. Laguna Development is based in Albuquerque, N.M., and is the third largest hotel operator in the state, holding management contracts for the and the Laguna Pueblo Indian Reservation, the company currently manages the Route 66 Casino Hotel outside Albuquerque, the Dancing Eagle Casino near Grants, N.M. and a truck stop casino, Casino Express. On top of that, Laguna also manages several travel centers and convenience stores. However, according to the company’s chief of sales and marketing, Skip Sayre, Laguna has been looking for a way to move beyond New Mexico due to its struggling economy.

“Our acquisition of the Isle of Capri Casino in Lake Charles is the culmination of a two-year business development effort to expand LDC both within and outside of New Mexico,” Jerry Smith, LDC president & CEO, said in a statement. “Lake Charles is Louisiana’s largest casino market. With our operating principals of quality, service and value we expect to continue to generate solid financial results for our owners and investors.”


Like this story? Subscribe to IHIF!

The hospitality industry turns to IHIF International Hotel Investment News as the must-read source for investment and development coverage worldwide. Sign up today to get inside the deal with the latest transactions, openings, financing, and more delivered to your inbox and read on the go.
The casino's 492 guestrooms are spread across two buildings.

Isle of Capri Casinos is based in St. Louis and has owned the Louisiana property for more than 20 years. The company has properties in seven states, and most recently opened a $60-million casino in Bettendorf, Iowa. Its recent sale of the hotel in Westlake, La., still requires approval from the Louisiana Gaming Control Board, meaning the deal is not expected to be closed until early 2017.

“While we work on a smooth transition to Kicks Entertainment, our focus remains on providing our customers with the great experiences they have come to expect from Isle of Capri Casino Hotel Lake Charles,” said Eric Hausler, CEO of Isle of Capri Casinos.

Included in the deal is a 50,000-square-foot riverboat casino, 492 guestrooms, several food & beverage outlets and covered parking. The guestrooms are located in two separate hotels, the Tower and Inn at the Isle.

Suggested Articles

The sales included that of the 503-room Hilton São Paulo Morumbi, the real estate investment trust’s last international property.

The appointments included new C-suite leaders at IHG, Marriott International and Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas.

After disbursing 50 years' worth of hotel assets, the company is focused on worldwide growth in the luxury sector.