Century Casinos is considering adding a hotel to its namesake gaming property in Cape Girardeau, Mo. But it’s not yet clear when such a project will commence or what the size and price will be.
Lyle Randolph, Century Casino Cape Girardeau’s general manager, said in an interview with KFVS-12, the local CBS affiliate, that the operator is looking to make a decision on the hotel project by the end of this year.
We also talked about the future for hotel development. It’s one of those goals we’ve had at the property for a long time, and we hope to see that come to reality in the near future,” he said in the interview.
Located in southeast Missouri, Cape Girardeau is situated along the Mississippi River and the Century Casino is close to that waterfront. Adding a hotel could make the regional gaming venue a more appealing destination and help the operator better capitalize on some built-in geographic advantages. The town is home to Southeast Missouri State University and is just 100 miles away from St. Louis and 150 miles from Memphis.
Century Could Use Partner
It’s not yet clear how Colorado-based Century will proceed with a hotel project in Missouri. But it’s possible it partners with a real estate firm.
VICI Properties (NYSE:VICI) owns the property of the casino. The two firms partnered in acquiring the Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort in West Virginia, the Cape Girardeau casino, and Lady Luck Casino — also in Missouri — in 2019.
Century and VICI purchased those venues from the company then known as Eldorado Resorts, as that operator was looking to shed assets ahead of its takeover of Caesars Entertainment. Those three venues represent 60 percent of Century’s US portfolio. The other two casinos controlled by the company are eponymous properties in Colorado.
Like other regional gaming properties, including those in Missouri, the Cape Girardeau casino was pinched by the coronavirus pandemic and related shutdowns. However, the Missouri Gaming Commission (MGC) notes the venue is currently faring better than many competitors in the state.
Visitation levels aren’t yet back to pre-pandemic levels. But in an encouraging sign for Century, those that are coming to the casino are spending more money.
Century has long been a favorite of Wall Street analysts, many of whom highlight the operator’s heavily local clientele. In a period of recovery for the gaming industry, Century is able to avoid some of the volatility associated with destination markets like Las Vegas.
Given its history, strong balance sheet, and expected sale of its Poland assets, analysts believe Century could be on the prowl for smaller acquisitions in the back half of this year.
Dealmaking probably wouldn’t affect property enhancements, including a possible hotel in Cape Girardeau, because the operator has the resources to execute on multiple fronts.
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