It's been shuttered for a year and a half amid rumors that it was going to be a boutique hotel. When it appeared that funding had bottomed out and there was no light at the end of the tunnel, the rumor mill began in earnest that the Lady Luck was cursed.
Word came yesterday that a Hollywood ending may be in sight after all. John Given of the CIM Group told the Las Vegas City Council his firm is taking over the Lady Luck from the current owners and will make it a priority to put the closed casino "on the fastest track to turn the lights back on."
The Lady Luck sits across the street from the old Post Office which is being turned into a Museum called the PostModern and will highlight the Mob's history in Las Vegas.
Given was there to ask the City to agree to sell CIM the 5.5 acres that are currently Frank Wright Plaza (a park). The City Council voted unanimously in favor of that idea.
In addition to calling on CIM to give the council progress reports on the project, the agreement also requires the firm to consider removing a pedestrian bridge over Third Street that connects the Lady Luck's two hotel towers. City officials say the bridge blocks views between the Fremont Street Experience and the historic post office (the PostModern) on Stewart Avenue.
Given is aiming for the Lady Luck to reopen in 2009. (Everything under construction is slated to open or re-open in 2009. Sounds like a week won't go by that something new will be celebrated).
CIM Group will take "full ownership" of the project from Downtown Resorts, the company that bought it in 2005 then closed the casino and hotel, displacing about 700 workers. Since then Downtown Resorts, led by Andrew Donner of Las Vegas, failed to meet deadlines it set to re-open the property.
Besides reviving the casino and hotel, CIM Group will create a development plan for adjacent property that includes businesses that were part of the Lady Luck deal like Triple George Grill and Sidebar as well as independently owned businesses like Hogs & Heifers Saloon. (We will be very sad if Triple George and Sidebar become yet another trendy ultra lounge.)
Hogs & Heifers and a nearby pawn shop are the only two businesses on the street that weren't part of the Lady Luck's outgoing ownership's plan to revive the block. The owner of Hogs and Heifers has a 20-year lease top operate the bar in the building. (The Harley crowd is cheering, no doubt).