Boyd Keeping Eastside Cannery Licenses as Casino Remains Shuttered

Posted on: May 22, 2024, 03:30h. 

Last updated on: May 23, 2024, 10:18h.

Boyd Gaming will maintain licenses for the Eastside Cannery Casino and Hotel for another two years after the Clark County Commission granted related approvals on Tuesday.

Eastside Cannery
Boyd Gaming’s Eastside Cannery on Boulder Highway in Las Vegas. The venue will remain closed for another two years. (Image: Jeff Scheid/Nevada Independent)

The commission voted unanimously in favor of granting Boyd a two-year extension on the temporary closure of the casino hotel located on Boulder Highway. That comes with the option for two six-month extensions. A previously established waiver on the venue’s licensing was set to expire before the end of this month.

Eastside Cannery has been shuttered for more than 50 months and is now the only gaming property in the Las Vegas Valley that was closed during the early days of the coronavirus pandemic for which plans haven’t been announced.

Las Vegas-based Boyd runs 28 gaming venues across 10 states, including 11 in its home city.

Eastside Cannery Business Funneled to Sam’s Town

Boyd isn’t necessarily being pinched by Eastside Cannery’s now lengthy pandemic-induced closure because patrons of that venue are making their way to another Boyd property.

Our Eastside Cannery customers, gaming and non-gaming alike, have consolidated to Sam’s Town until demand requires additional capacity for both properties,” wrote the operator in a letter to the commission.

Boyd’s Chief Compliance Officer Michelle Rasmusson noted in the letter that there’s ample excess capacity at Sam’s Town and current market conditions aren’t conducive to restarting operations at Eastside Cannery. She added that even if the demand was there to reopen the property, labor shortages would make it difficult to adequately staff the venue.

Eastside Cannery opened in 2008 with Boyd acquiring it through its 2016 $230 million purchase of Cannery Casinos, which also included the Cannery Casino Hotel in North Vegas.

It Might Behoove Boyd to Make a Move

Some casinos in the Las Vegas Valley that were shuttered due to the pandemic never returned. For example, in 2022, Boyd rival Red Rock Resorts announced permanent closures of Fiesta Henderson, Fiesta Rancho, and Texas Station. Those venues were ultimately demolished and Red Rock sold the real estate to nongaming entities.

Boyd hasn’t said if it would consider demolishing or selling Eastside Cannery, but either of those options could have merit because the operator is shelling out $500K per month simply to maintain the venue. Clark County Commissioner Jim Gibson said at Tuesday’s meeting he’d like to see the gaming establishment return to its former glory, but added that keeping it closed is the best course of action for the time being.

“The company has suggested a plan. We value their judgment, not ours. The one thing I would say is the maintenance there has been impeccable,” Gibson noted prior to the commission’s ruling. “We appreciate very much the way the Boyd group has stepped up and taken care of its facility. We’re hopeful at some point in time that it will restore itself to commercial use and be a really important part of their organization.”