Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Lumiere Sale near, Pinnacle Entertainment Chief Says

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Lumiere Sale near, Pinnacle Entertainment Chief Says

Article excerpt

Pinnacle Entertainment is close to selling its glitzy Lumire Place casino complex on the St. Louis riverfront. A deal could be reached in about two weeks, according to Pinnacle Chief Executive Anthony Sanfilippo.

The Las Vegas-based casino operator is discussing the sale with "multiple" potential buyers of the Lumire casino, the adjoining luxury Four Seasons hotel and the nearby hotel HoteLumire, Sanfilippo said in an interview Wednesday.

A sale of the entire property as a single package is likely, the CEO said, adding that he expects that the new owner will continue to operate the complex's luxury hotel under the Four Seasons flag.

Sanfilippo declined to identify potential buyers, but said Pinnacle could continue to operate Lumire Place for several months until the sale to a new owner is completed.

He also expects the new Lumire owner to adhere to Pinnacle's agreements to help fund Gateway Arch grounds improvements and the National Blues Museum downtown as part of its redevelopment agreement with the city.

Pinnacle put Lumire Place up for sale after reaching a deal with antitrust regulators who had threatened to block the company's $2.8 billion acquisition of rival Ameristar Casinos.

By taking over Ameristar and its St. Charles casino, Pinnacle would have three local casinos and hold nearly 60 percent of the $1 billion St. Louis gaming market, according to the Federal Trade Commission.

As a condition of its approval of the deal, the FTC required Pinnacle last month to sell a local casino which the casino operator decided would be Lumire and an Ameristar project under construction near Pinnacle's casino complex in Lake Charles, La. Without Lumire, Pinnacle will have about 40 percent of the St. Louis market.

Completion of the Ameristar deal drew closer Wednesday when the Missouri Gaming Commission voted 4-0 to approve the change of control to Pinnacle of the Ameristar casinos in St. Charles and Kansas City. Missouri is the final state to approve measures required as part of Ameristar deal. …

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