Hard Rock International is buying the Mirage hotel-casino operations in Las Vegas from MGM Resorts International for $1.075 billion in cash, the companies announced on Monday.
Hard Rock plans to rebrand the property and build a guitar-shaped hotel tower.
MGM Resorts said it will retain the Mirage brand, licensing it to Hard Rock royalty-free for no more than three years while Hard Rock completes its plans to rebrand the hotel-casino.
MGM said in November that it was seeking a buyer for the Mirage's operations. In a follow-up report in Travel Weekly, C3 Gaming co-founder Andrew Klebanow said the Mirage would be a "near ideal acquisition" for Hard Rock that could "easily be transformed into the Hard Rock Casino Las Vegas."
Another huge real estate cash-out for MGM
MGM Resorts CEO Bill Hornbuckle said, "This transaction is a significant milestone for MGM Resorts, and for Las Vegas. As part of the team that opened the Mirage in 1989, I know firsthand how special it is and what a great opportunity it presents to the Hard Rock team."
Paul Salem, chairman of MGM Resorts International's board of directors, said the sale is the culmination of a series of transformational transactions for the company.
"The monetization of our entire real property portfolio, together with the addition of CityCenter and our agreement to acquire the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, will position the company with a fortress balance sheet, premier portfolio and significant financial resources to pursue our strategic objectives," Salem said.
Hard Rock International will enter into a long-term lease agreement with Mirage real estate owner Vici Properties.
"We are honored to welcome the Mirage's 3,500 team members to the Hard Rock family," said Jim Allen, chairman of Hard Rock International. "When complete, Hard Rock Las Vegas will be a fully integrated resort welcoming meetings, groups, tourists and casino guests from around the world to its nearly 80-acre center Strip location."
The Hard Rock-MGM Resorts transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2022, subject to regulatory approvals and other conditions.
Built by Steve Wynn, the 3,044-key Mirage opened in 1989 and was acquired by MGM Resorts in 2000. The mid-Strip property, known for its 90-foot-tall volcano, has been the home of Cirque du Soleil's "The Beatles Love" since 2006. It previously staged Siegfried & Roy's legendary magic show from 1990 to 2003.