Alabama’s Poarch Band of Creek Indians Adds $1.3B Property to Gaming Operations
PCI Gaming Authority D/B/A Wind Creek Hospitality (WCH), an authority of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians, has finalized the purchase of the Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, for a total enterprise value of $1.3 billion. The property will be rebranded as Wind Creek Bethlehem (WCB).
WCB will welcome guests to the upscale, Las Vegas-style resort, located in the heart of the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania, approximately 80 miles from New York City. Amenities currently include a 282-room AAA four diamond hotel, a 183,000 square foot casino floor featuring 3,000 slots and electronic table games, 200 table games, numerous food and beverage outlets, a 150,000 square foot retail mall, and a multi-purpose event center.
Over time, WCH plans to invest an estimated $340 million in updating and expanding the property to include construction of a 300-room hotel adjacent to the casino; a 300,000 square foot adventure and water park at the existing No. 2 Machine Shop Bethlehem Steel site; and a 400-to-450-room hotel adjacent to the adventure park. All expected to bring additional jobs, tourism and economic growth to Lehigh Valley.
WCH President/CEO, James Dorris commented “One of the things that drew us to this property is the quality and experience of the service-minded employees. Each of the nine executives has accepted a multi-year contract with us and we hope that all team members want to continue their work here as part of the Wind Creek family. We will need them as we grow the offerings at Wind Creek Bethlehem. ”
The purchase of its largest property to date provides a significant opportunity for WCH to diversify its holdings as well and to offer the Wind Creek Rewards program and online WindCreekCasino.com to millions of new customers. Travel perks offered by the Wind Creek Rewards program to some of the most alluring resorts in the Caribbean: Renaissance Aruba Resort and Casino and Renaissance Curacao Resort and Casino, both owned by WCH, are expected to be particularly appealing escapes for WCB customers during the cold winter months.
Wind Creek Hospitality funded the acquisition with a combination of existing cash on its balance sheet and new debt financing. Credit Suisse has provided financing for the transaction. Wind Creek Hospitality anticipates that the additional cash flow resulting from the acquisition will allow it to pay down debt on an accelerated basis after closing. Innovation Capital, LLC is exclusive financial advisor and Cooper Levenson P.A. is legal counsel to Wind Creek Hospitality in connection with the transaction.
About Wind Creek Hospitality:
Wind Creek Hospitality is an authority of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians. Wind Creek Hospitality manages the Tribe’s gaming facilities including: Wind Creek Atmore, Wind Creek Wetumpka, Wind Creek Montgomery, Wa She Shu Casino in Nevada, Renaissance Aruba Resort & Casino, Renaissance Curacao Resort & Casino as well as racetracks in Alabamaand Florida. For more information, visit: https://windcreekhospitality.com/.
About the Poarch Band of Creek Indians:
The Poarch Band of Creek Indians is the only federally recognized Indian Tribe in the state of Alabama, operating as a sovereign nation with its own system of government and bylaws. The Tribe operates a variety of economic enterprises, which employ thousands of area residents. For more information, visit: www.pci-nsn.gov.
Source: Wind Creek Hospitality