Wednesday, August 12, 2015

American Place Indianapolis Development

Dan Lee has been involved with the financing and development of some of the most iconic Las Vegas hotels.

As Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer and Senior Vice President of Finance and Development for Mirage Resorts under Steve Wynn he oversaw the financing of Treasure Island. He then engineered the company's purchase of The Dunes which led to the development of Monte Carlo and Bellagio on that land.

Lee also helped to put together the joint venture between Mirage Resorts and Boyd Gaming which led to the building of Borgata in Atlantic City. Later he became the CEO of Pinnacle Entertainment where he developed L’Auberge Casino Resort in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Lee also ran The Palms in Las Vegas for a brief period.

It was only a matter of time before Dan Lee got involved in developing another project. Now as CEO of Full House Resorts he has come up with an innovative plan.

Full House owns the under-performing Rising Star casino in Indiana. Realizing that Rising Star doesn't need as many table games and slot machines as they have licensed by the state, Lee is proposing to shift about half of Rising Star's gaming capacity to Indianapolis.

The resulting proposal is American Place - a mixed use development with a casino as the centerpiece.

The location is an old airport terminal that was essentially abandoned when a new terminal was built. That left the surrounding area including many hotels economically depressed. This development would provide a much needed boost to the area, and since it's near an airport many of the local neighborhood concerns regarding a casino are non-existent.

On the latest Full House earnings conference call today, Lee called the development a long-shot. After cutting through miles of government red tape they would still need to finance the project - likely partnering with another real estate developer. Still, this outside the box thinking is why Dan Lee is a name to watch. It wouldn't surprise me to see him develop something in Las Vegas sometime in the future.