There’s always something exciting happening in Las Vegas, but the latest excitement is directed well outside the border of Sin City. Along the western rim of Nevada in Sparks, just a few miles east of Reno, is one of the Silver State’s most recognized off-Strip casinos, the Nugget. Having just finalized an agreement for purchase, the new owners at Marnell Gaming have announced huge plans for the property.
Marnell Gaming, LLC is the proud owner of several other off-Strip gambling establishments, including the Colorado Belle and the Edgewater, two distinguished casino resorts located along the Colorado River in Laughlin, NV. The newest addition to Marnell’s portfolio will represent one of the largest casinos under the company’s expanding wing.
Between them, the Colorado Belle, designed to resemble a massive riverboat, and it’s more elegant sister-site, the Edgewater, present guests with a wide range of features and services. There are about 2,000 hotel rooms, over 1,450 slot machines, 40 table games and 10 live poker tables, plus several dining options and entertainment venues. They are easily two of the most prominent casino establishments in the Laughlin area, situated 100 miles southeast of Las Vegas.
Being one of Nevada’s oldest and largest north-side gambling establishments, the Nugget Casino Resort already surpasses those properties in many ways, featuring nearly 1,400 guest rooms, 8 restaurants, a 75,000 square foot casino and 110,000 square foot convention center. Once the new owner finishes with his plans for the Nugget in Sparks, the property will surely outshine its new siblings to the southeast.
Anthony Marnell III, CEO of Marnell Gaming and founder of M Resorts Spa Casino in Henderson, NV, has enormous plans for the Nugget Casino property in terms of capital investment. Virtually the entire hotel and casino will receive an extensive makeover, including a complete installment of new slot machines on the gaming floor.
Marnell said he will initiate a full renovation of the 800 hotel rooms in the West Tower, as well as the Nugget’s restaurants, casino, showroom and convention center. Renovations are expected to begin soon after completion of the sale, tentatively scheduled for the second quarter of 2016, pending the usual regulatory review and approval by the Nevada Gaming Control Board.
Loyal members of the Nugget’s Advantage Rewards program have been assured that their patronage will not go unrequited under the new ownership. All comp points and other benefits earned on the existing program will carry over to Marnell’s corporate-wide players’ club accounts. No points, perks or earned benefits will be lost.
Mr. Arnell extolled the acquisition of the 61 year old Nugget, saying, “We see this as a remarkable opportunity to join forces with an iconic Nevada brand and one of Northern Nevada’s premier casino resorts.” He was especially enthused about the company’s expansion into the Reno/Sparks region “during an exciting period of economic expansion”, in the area.
It doesn’t appear any current employees of the Nugget casino have anything to worry about either. “As we work to complete the transaction, we are excited to welcome all the great team members at the Nugget, and look forward to achieving continued success and growth together,” Marnell assured.
Cartlon L. Greer, CEO of the Spark resort property, was equally delighted by the new prospects for the casino, calling it a “positive step” towards the establishment’s future. “The Marnell family has a rich history in the gaming industry and shares our vision of a revitalized Nugget,” Geer said. “The resources and capital Marnell plans to deploy will be critical in improving the Nugget facilities and overall guest experience.”
Once the sale is complete, this will mark the third time the Nugget has changed hands since it was originally opened by Dick Graves in 1995. He sold it to John Ascuaga just 5 years later, then in 2013, Global Gaming and Hospitality took over. That company is now transferring the reigns to Marnell Gaming for an undisclosed amount of money.