Gulf Coast Casino Swap

Harrah’s Entertainment and Pinnacle Entertainment agreed to swap Gulf Coast properties, the two gaming companies announced November 9th.

Harrah’s traded what’s left of two of its properties in Lake Charles, La., and about $25 million in cash for Pinnacle’s hurricane-damaged Casino Magic in Biloxi, Miss.

Pinnacle agreed to buy the properties and their licenses in May after Harrah’s decided not to rebuild its two-boat gambling complex in Lake Charles following 2005’s Hurricane Rita.

Pinnacle has said it plans to use the licenses to build a $350 million casino, known as Sugarcane Bay, next to its L’Auberge du Lac resort, as well as a casino project in East Baton Rouge.

The Casino Magic property is next to Harrah’s Grand Casino property in Biloxi.

“It has been a privilege to be a part of the Lake Charles community for the last six years, and we wish the community every success as they work to continue the growth of their gaming and tourism industry,” said Anthony Sanfilippo, president of Harrah’s operations in the central U.S.

“We look forward to the future in Biloxi, where this acquisition gives us additional flexibility in pursuing future development along the Mississippi Gulf Coast.”