Strip land values push higher after plunging in recession

By Eli Segall | Originally published in Las Vegas Review-Journal | March 4, 2023

When casino giant Genting Group bought a mothballed project site on the north Strip a decade ago, it sparked hopes for a sleepy section of Las Vegas Boulevard.

It also marked a steep plunge in property values for the famed casino corridor.

On March 4, 2013, Boyd Gaming Corp. announced that it sold the partially-built Echelon resort property for $350 million in cash to Malaysia-based Genting. The sale amounted to roughly $4 million per acre, and by that measure, it was a bargain compared to what buyers paid years earlier, before the economy crashed, for land on the Strip.

But a lot has changed in the past decade.

Yes, Las Vegas’ economy got derailed by the pandemic. But in the years since Genting bought the plot for what’s now Resorts World Las Vegas, land values on the Strip have pushed higher, and the north edge of the corridor has seen more activity.

Rising sales

Michael Parks, hotel-casino specialist with real estate brokerage CBRE Group, who has done numerous deals on and near the Strip, agreed with the notion that Boyd’s sale marked a bottoming out for land values following the frenzied mid-2000s bubble.

The peak, he noted, was casino owner Phil Ruffin’s sale of the New Frontier in 2007 for $1.2 billion, or more than $30 million an acre, to Israeli investors. The buyers imploded the hotel, with plans to develop a megaresort, but the economy soon tanked and they never built it.

Land sales on the Strip were largely slow-going for years after Genting’s purchase but have since gained momentum.

Among last year’s deals, real estate firm The Siegel Group acquired roughly 10 acres on and near the north Strip for $75 million, and a North Dakota tribal nation purchased most of the 15-acre former Route 91 Harvest festival site, on the south Strip, for more than $90 million.

These and other sales, however, were surpassed by two blockbusters in the pedestrian-choked center Strip area.

Developer Brett Torino and New York’s Flag Luxury Group acquired 2 acres on the Strip in 2021 for around $80 million, or $40 million an acre, and have since built a retail complex. And last year, Houston billionaire Tilman Fertitta purchased roughly 6 acres of real estate for $270 million, or more than $43 million per acre.

He has already torn down buildings there, with plans to develop a 43-story casino-resort.

Quiet stretch of Strip

A decade ago, after Las Vegas’ once-supercharged real estate market imploded and the broader economy crashed, the north Strip wasn’t the most inviting place.

Besides the skeleton of Echelon — Boyd had stopped construction years earlier — the area included the stalled, unfinished Fontainebleau skyscraper, big land tracts where massive projects never materialized and minimal foot traffic.

It was “just a glaring example of how hard the Strip, and Las Vegas, was hit as a result of the recession,” Parks said.

The north Strip still isn’t bustling with foot traffic, and there are still big parcels of land with an uncertain future. But the area has gained momentum.

The 67-story Fontainebleau, reacquired two years ago by original developer Jeffrey Soffer, is under construction and scheduled to open in the fourth quarter this year.

Resorts World debuted in June 2021 to a crowd of at least 20,000 people on its opening night, and ​​the Las Vegas Convention Center’s new $1 billion West Hall opened the same month.

The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority’s $120 million sale of a 10-acre plot on the north Strip, approved in 2021, fell through this past December. But the tourism agency is slated this month to again consider selling the parcel, spokeswoman Lori Nelson-Kraft told me, without naming the buyer.

This being Las Vegas, you never know if a project plan will stall or fizzle, if something big and flashy will get built, if a property will get flipped to a new owner, or if a landowner will go years without striking a deal to sell.

But if a plot of land on the Strip does change hands, don’t be surprised if it trades for heavy bags of cash.

Contact Eli Segall at esegall@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0342. Follow @eli_segall on Twitter.

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🌟 Happy Teacher Appreciation Week! 🌟

At BTF, we recognize the incredible dedication and hard work of teachers everywhere. They inspire, educate, and shape the future, often going above and beyond to ensure every student has the tools they need to succeed.

We're proud to support BTF Educational Services and the @nvccf Nevada Childhood Cancer Foundation, where teachers bring light and hope to young learners. This week, let's give a special thank you to all the teachers who make a lasting impact on our lives.

Drop a comment below to share a special memory or a shoutout to a teacher who made a difference for you! 🙌📚✏️

#TeacherAppreciationWeek #ThankATeacher #EducationMatters #BTF #NevadaChildhoodCancerFoundation
We extend our gratitude to all who joined our Earth Day Challenge this April. It was inspiring to witness your commitment and efforts towards nurturing our planet. Here are some beautiful snapshots of nature's wonders, captured by the BTF team over the year. Let's all persist in our individual contributions, for Earth Day is a celebration meant to be embraced every day!

#earthday #CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove #ourearthourfuture #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch #SaveRedRock
🌎🌿 Join the Challenge! 🌿🌎

Let's all give a big shout out 📣  to Kari Tillman and her adorable little helper Nugget for their incredible dedication 💚 to our planet, not just during the Earth Day Challenge, but all year round! 

Kari, your commitment to planting and nurturing a lovely garden and picking up litter is truly inspiring. Keep up the great work! 🌱🌻

Earth Day has come and gone but we can all continue doing our part celebrating Earth Day every day of the year! 🌿✨ 

# SaveRedRock #CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove #earthday #ourearthourfuture #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch
🌎🌿 Join the Challenge! 🌿🌎

Let's all give a big shoutout 📣 to Leslie Davis Barnts and little Spencer for their incredible dedication 💚 to our planet, not just during the Earth Day Challenge, but all year round! Your commitment to planting and nurturing your garden, growing veggies, and cultivating a beautiful flower garden is truly inspiring. Keep up the fantastic work! 🌱🌻

We invite YOU to join the movement and post your own earth day challenge video! Share your photos and videos with us on any of our social media platforms, and we'll showcase them for the world to see. 📲 Don't forget to invite your friends to join in too! Together, we can create a positive impact and leave a healthier planet for future generations. 🌍 💚

Let's make every day Earth Day! 🌿✨ 

# SaveRedRock #CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove #earthday #ourearthourfuture #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch
In celebration of Earth Day 🌎, which we honor every day of the year through our conservation efforts 🌿, the Brett Torino Foundation joined forces with 75-100 dedicated volunteers for the Lovell Canyon Clean-Up last Saturday. 

Together, we filled an entire extra-large dumpster with discarded furniture, mattresses, a water heater, and an abundance of glass, cans, bottles, and other waste. 

It's truly humbling to have so much help from the community to continue the work we began in 2017, enhancing the beauty of Lovell Canyon. Together, we've turned it from a neglected, crime-ridden, toxic site into a thriving, verdant oasis, cherished by hikers, bikers, and families seeking solace in its majestic, cooler high elevations. 

A heartfelt 💚 thank you to @saveredrock, our community allies and volunteers whose dedication made this event a resounding success.
🌎🌿 Join the Challenge! 🌿🌎

Heartfelt 💚 thanks to Tad Chatham @tad_chatham and Mel Sheldon @melrsheldon for dedicating their time to helping our planet and our community at the Lovell Canyon Clean-Up on Saturday. Your commitment and contribution mean the world to us!

We invite YOU to join the movement and post your own earth day challenge video! Share your photos and videos with us on any of our social media platforms, and we'll showcase them for the world to see. 📲 Don't forget to invite your friends to join in too! Together, we can create a positive impact and leave a healthier planet for future generations. 🌍 💚

Let's make every day Earth Day! 🌿✨

# Save Red Rock #CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove #earthday #ourearthourfuture #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch
🌎🌿 Join the Challenge! 🌿🌎

Please join us in giving Jessica Carlson aka “Snickers” a shout out 📣 for showing love 💚 to our planet during the Earth Day Challenge and all year long! 

Jessica, thank you! Your efforts to minimize waste at home are making a big difference for our planet! These are things we can all do in our own homes. 

We invite YOU to join the movement and post your own earth day challenge video! Share your photos and videos with us on any of our social media platforms, and we'll showcase them for the world to see. 📲 Don't forget to invite your friends to join in too! Together, we can create a positive impact and leave a healthier planet for future generations. 🌍 💚

Let's make every day Earth Day! 🌿✨ 

# Save Red Rock #CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove #earthday #ourearthourfuture #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch
Big thanks to @fox5vegas and @kpassoth for supporting our Lovell Canyon Cleanup on Earth Day! We were honored to team up with @saveredrock to make a difference.

In the words of our founder, Brett Torino, “It should be protected, and it should be fought for!” That’s why we've spent decades safeguarding and working to preserve this stunning canyon.

Together, let's keep fighting for o#earthdaycleanup 

Watch now: https://www.fox5vegas.com/2024/04/20/natural-treasure-trashed-advocates-fight-restore-lovell-canyon/

#CelebrateEarth #PlanetLove #EarthDayCleanup
Together, we can achieve greatness!

As a Private Foundation, we understand the power of collective action in shaping our environmental legacy. It's a call to arms for individuals, businesses, governments, and the private sector to unite in defense of this magnificent planet we call home. 

🌎 Together, we can protect and preserve its beauty for generations to come. 

Today, the imperative to tackle climate change, conserve biodiversity, and safeguard ecosystems has never been clearer.  Join us in our mission to create a sustainable and thriving future. Our future depends on the diligence of each and every one of us. Let's make a difference together. 

#OurFutureOurEarth #CollectiveAction
⏰⏳ Last Chance to Join The Lovell Canyon Clean-Up! ⏳⏰

Today's the day! Join us for the Lovell Canyon Clean-Up in partnership with @saveredrock and our amazing community allies. 

📅 Today, April 20
⏰ 10 am - 2 pm (please arrive by noon)
📍 Lovell Canyon

We'll provide all the cleanup supplies you need, along with refreshments from Whole Foods Market. For your comfort and safety, wear long pants, closed-toe shoes, and consider bringing sun protection and a water bottle.

Hosted by: Brett Torino Foundation
Supported by: Centennial Subaru

👉 Registration is required: www.saveredrock.com/earth-day

On-site volunteer waivers available for signing upon arrival. Meet at the Forest Service Kiosk at the Lovell Canyon Road entrance, off SR160. Check your confirmation email for more details.

Don't miss this chance to make a difference for our planet! See you there!

#earthday #lovellcanyon #saveredrock #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch #CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove
🌎🌿 Lovell Canyon Clean Up 🌿🌎

A big thanks to @citycastvegas for helping us promote the Lovell Canyon Clean Up event being hosted by @saveredrock and BTF! It's happening tomorrow, and there's still time to register. Join us in celebrating Earth Day by signing up now. Together with our community, we're making a difference in beautifying Lovell Canyon and honoring Mother Earth. 

Take a look at what City Cast has to say about this and our other events:
https://lasvegas.citycast.fm/best/celebrate-earth-day-las-vegas

We'd love your help—see you tomorrow at 10am!

#citycastlasvegas #earthday #lovellcanyon #saveredrock #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch #CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove
🌎🌿 Join the Movement! 🌿🌎

Please join us in giving Christopher Bache aka "Brooklyn" a 👏 Round of Applause 👏 for giving the earth so much love by taking part in our Earth Day Challenge! Your efforts to conserve water and electricity at home are making a real difference for our planet. These simple steps are things we can all do in our own homes. 

We invite YOU to join the movement and post your own earth day challenge video! Share your photos and videos with us on any of our social media platforms, and we'll showcase them for the world to see. 📲 Don't forget to invite your friends to join in too! Together, we can create a positive impact and leave a healthier planet for future generations. 🌍 💚

Let's make every day Earth Day! 🌿✨ 

#CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove #earthday #ourearthourfuture #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch
Are you aware that the Brett Torino Foundation has dedicated over 30 years to rejuvenating Lovell Canyon? Thanks to collaborations with @saveredrock  and numerous other groups, what was once a dumping ground is now a flourishing ecosystem.

Discover the full story behind this transformative project on our website: https://bretttorinofoundation.org/conservation/

#environmentaladvocacy #earthday #saveredrock #savelovellcanyon #lasvegasrecreation #getoutdoors #volunteer
🌎🌿 Join the Movement! 🌿🌎

Big thanks to Celena Haas @chscomms for joining our Earth Day Challenge! Mother Earth appreciates your commitment to reusing grocery bags. Just think of the positive impact if everyone followed your example!

We invite YOU to join the movement and post your own earth day challenge video! Share your photos and videos with us on any of our social media platforms, and we'll showcase them for the world to see. 📲 Don't forget to invite your friends to join in too! Together, we can create a positive impact and leave a healthier planet for future generations. 🌍 💚

Let's make every day Earth Day! 🌿✨ 

#CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove #earthday #ourearthourfuture #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch
🌎🌿 Lovell Canyon Clean-Up 🌿🌎

Join us, in partnership with @saveredrock  and our community allies, to clean up Lovell Canyon on Saturday, April 20, from 10 am to 2 pm. (Please arrive by noon and depart at your convenience).

We'll provide supplies such as bags and gloves, as well as refreshments from Whole Foods Market. For your safety and comfort, please wear long pants, closed-toe shoes, and consider bringing sun protection and a water bottle.

Hosted by the Brett Torino Foundation
Supported by Centennial Subaru

Date: Saturday, April 20, 2024
Time: 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Location: Lovell Canyon

REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED:
www.saveredrock.com/earth-day 

Volunteer waivers will be provided on-site for signing upon arrival. Please meet at the Forest Service Kiosk at the Lovell Canyon Road entrance, off SR160. Refer to your confirmation email for further details.

We look forward to seeing you there!

#earthday #lovellcanyon #saveredrock #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch #CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove
🌎🌿 Join the Movement! 🌿🌎

Kudos Julie Bodell! You and all your efforts are amazing and you're quite the overachiever. Planet earth loves you for it! 🌎 (everyone else, don’t be intimidated by the big 😊). There’s something about walking to work or to lunch....it doesn’t just help the planet, it helps your physical mental and spiritual body too. Thanks for the love, Julie! 

We invite YOU to join the movement and post your own earth day challenge video! Share your photos and videos with us on any of our social media platforms, and we'll showcase them for the world to see. 📲 Don't forget to invite your friends to join in too! Together, we can create a positive impact and leave a healthier planet for future generations. 🌍 💚

Let's make every day Earth Day! 🌿✨ 

#CelebrateEarth #ReduceReuseRecycle #PlanetLove #earthday #ourearthourfuture #bretttorinofoundation #torinoranch