MGM Resorts International agreed to take full ownership of the huge CityCenter property on the Las Vegas Strip in a complex arrangement to sell real estate but still gain all the revenues from operating the massive Strip casino, the company said Thursday.
CityCenter is a glassy complex with hotel-condo towers and luxury shopping, originally built for $8.7 billion, but it nearly plunged into bankruptcy after construction costs skyrocketed and it opened amid an economic recession in 2009.
If the deal finalizes, MGM, which is the largest operator on the Strip, would continue a now well-worn financial strategy to bulk up its cash balance while owning less real estate in Vegas.
The announcement comes as the gambling industry recovers from the pandemic, with tourists returning to the Strip and casino operators reporting busy weekends.
Under the deal, MGM Resorts plans to buy out its 50% partner in CityCenter, Dubai World subsidiary Infinity World Development Corp., for $2.1 billion. The deal values CityCenter at $5.8 billion, including $1.5 billion in debt, the company said.