Virgin Group Becomes New Owner of Hard Rock Hotel Las Vegas

Virgin Group Becomes New Owner of Hard Rock Hotel Las VegasUK business magnate Richard Branson has now acquired an interest in Sin City after purchasing the Hard Rock Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas for an undisclosed sum. The deal involving Branson’s Virgin Group and a handful of investors was announced last Friday, with Branson stating that a great amount of money would be spent changing the building over the next two years, after which it will subsequently become a rebranded Virgin property.
“Virgin is all about fun, entertainment, not taking ourselves too seriously,” Branson explained. “Virgin Atlantic has had a lot of fun flying tons of people to Las Vegas from Britain for many years. Virgin America has done the same, and we wouldn’t have just come to Las Vegas unless we could’ve found the property that was very Virgin, and I think that’s what we’ve achieved.”
Hard Rock For Sale
Hard Rock Hotel first put its Las Vegas property up for sale back in March 2017, and despite receiving interest from various companies, Branson’s Virgin Hotels emerged as the front-runner in January 2018. The billionaire’s interest in the property captured the imagination of industry analysts, too, who believed the match was ideal considering Branson’s background in the music industry.
Last week, Sir Richard Branson and Virgin Group executives subsequently formalized their exciting announcement at an outdoor pool party held at the Hard Rock Hotel, with the fanfare including a DJ and female dancers hired by Virgin to add a bit of spectacle to the proceedings.
In addition to Branson’s Virgin Group, other partners involved in the deal include US investment company Juniper Capital Partners, and Canadian real estate firm Fengate Capital Management. Furthermore, Bosworth Hospitality Partners has also invested in the property, with the hospitality investments firm’s founder, Richard Bosworth, to become the hotel’s new Chief Executive Officer when opened.
Casino Expansion
Sir Richard Branson expressed an interest in moving into the casino industry as far back as 1997, and by 2003 his company had launched its internet casino brand called Virgin Games, offering a range of gambling products, including casino games, poker, and keno. It was always an ambition of Branson to acquire a live casino, though, with the Hard Rock Hotel presenting a golden opportunity, reflected in its attractive price on account of the property being located just off The Strip on Paradise Road.
Meanwhile, the Virgin group also has an ambitious plan to open up twenty Virgin Hotels in various prime cities across North America, with the move originally announced in 2010 as part of its business plan to acquire distressed businesses in the USA cheaply during the economic downturn. In January of 2015, it then opened the Virgin Hotels Chicago, with further projects planned for New York, San Francisco, Dallas, Washington, D.C., Silicon Valley, New Orleans, and Nashville.
Property Transformation
The 1,500-bedroomed Hard Rock Hotel will stay open while renovations are carried out, with the property’s rebranding to Virgin Hotels Las Vegas expected to be completed by the end of 2019. Until then, the Hard Rock brand will remain on the property, although according to Branson the iconic guitar above the hotel’s entrance might be replaced with a large letter V, representing the Virgin brand.
“The guitar may not survive. But we have a giant ‘V,’ which is sort of guitar-shaped, which may take over,” explained Branson.
Nevertheless, Virgin will continue to display all of the venue’s rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia, which came with the hotel, inside of the rebranded hotel. This makes sense because of Branson’s association with the music industry, and the fact many of the same artists have been connected to Virgin Records in the past, such as Mick Jagger, David Bowie, and Janet Jackson.
Furthermore, the property’s 60,000 square foot casino area will undergo a transformation during the renovation period, while Virgin’s flagship Commons Club restaurant & bar will also be opened up inside the hotel, acting as a central gathering area for guests, and offering its traditional range of full-services.

Poker News
Japan Introduces Responsible Gambling Bill
28 May 2018
Japan’s bicameral legislature, known as The National Diet, consists of an upper House of Councillors and a lower House of Representatives, with the latter having started discussing the Integrated Resorts Implementation Bill last week. Being debated is the regulatory framework required in order to set up an efficient and well functioning casino market in the
Ohio Casino Revenue Up 1% to $71.8m in April
17 May 2018
The Ohio Casino Control Commission has released its gambling results for April, with the state’s four casinos collecting $71.8 million last month, up by almost 1% compared to the prior year. Meanwhile, the Buckeye State’s seven racinos fared considerably better, with their revenue rising by 8% to $89.7 million from their slots and video gaming
NJ Generates Record iGaming Revenues in February
15 May 2018
In April, New Jersey’s online gambling market saw its revenue rise by 10.6% to $23 million versus the same month in 2017, with the amount posted second only to the record $25.6 million collected in March 2018. As a result, the Garden State has now generated $92.5 million over the first four months of this
Virginia Poised For Historical Gambling Expansion
11 May 2018
Virginia is among the country’s more conservative states when it comes to gambling, and for many decades has resisted the allure and revenues that the industry might bring. In the 1990s, for instance, its legislature turned down a push for riverboat gambling, and the following decade Internet gambling cafes were outlawed. For the past five