New Casino at Atlantic City Showboat?
Showboat Atlantic City owner Bart Blatstein has applied to New Jersey’s Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) to subdivide his property into five lots, reportedly to circumvent a deed restriction that would prevent the Showboat from opening a casino.
Showboat Atlantic City owner Bart Blatstein, through his company, Showboat Renaissance LLC, has submitted an application to the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) to create “five new lots” at the site in order to “accomplish future conveying and financing of improvements,” according to the Press of Atlantic City.
The subdivision seems to be Blatstein’s attempt to get around a deed restriction that prevents the Showboat from re-opening a casino on the property. The restriction was placed by Caesars when it sold the 1.4 million-square-foot property to Stockton University, which in turn sold Showboat to Blatstein, along with the deed limitation, in January 2016 for $23 million. In July of that year, Blatstein reopened the closed casino as a nongaming hotel.
In March, the Casino Control Commission awarded Blatstein a statement of compliance, a preliminary requirement for securing a full casino license in New Jersey. Blatstein told state gaming regulators he intended to construct a new gaming facility on an adjoining lot, thereby circumventing the imposed limitation. Hence, the request to subdivide the property.
Stark & Stark, a law firm that runs the New Jersey Law Blog, said in Casino.org, “Unless a restriction is deemed to be personal to the grantor imposing it, or there is a specified termination date, the passage of time alone will not serve to terminate a restriction.”
Last year, Blatstein received approval from the CRDA to convert 264 former hotel rooms into luxury rental apartments. The Showboat Residences offer fully furnished studio, one-bedroom or two-bedroom rentals with weekly rates ranging from $1,300 to $2,400.