Acquisitions & Hotel Openings

Harrah's Completes Casino Magic Biloxi Buy

LAS VEGAS, NV, November 10, 2006. -Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE:HET) said today its previously announced transactions with Pinnacle Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE:PNK) -- the acquisition of the remaining assets of Casino Magic Biloxi by affiliates of Harrah's, and the sale of two Harrah's subsidiaries that own businesses in Lake Charles, La. -- have closed. In addition to the Casino Magic assets, Harrah's received a payment of approximately $25 million from Pinnacle in the transactions.

"It has been a privilege to be a part of the Lake Charles community for the last six years, and we wish the community every success as they work to continue the growth of their gaming and tourism industry," said Anthony Sanfilippo, president of Harrah's Central Division. "We look forward to the future in Biloxi, where this acquisition gives us additional flexibility in pursuing future development along the Mississippi Gulf Coast."

Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. is the world's largest provider of branded casino entertainment through operating subsidiaries. Since its beginning in Reno, Nevada nearly 70 years ago, Harrah's has grown through development of new properties, expansions and acquisitions. Harrah's Entertainment is focused on building loyalty and value with its customers through a unique combination of great service, excellent products, unsurpassed distribution, operational excellence and technology leadership.

Coming Up In The August Online Hotel Business Review


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Feature Focus
Food & Beverage: Going Casual
According to industry tracker PKF Hospitality Research, food and beverage sales represent the second- largest source of revenue for full-service hotels behind rooms. Given its financial importance, hotel operators are constantly adapting and evolving their F&B operations in order to remain current with industry trends and to meet (and exceed) guest expectations. Recent food developments which continue to proliferate include the farm-to-table movement; customized menus for those who are vegan, vegetarian, paleo or gluten-free; the appearance of smaller dishes on tasting menus; and creatively- prepared comfort foods served in more casual settings. In fact, there is a growing emphasis in the entire industry on more casual food operations. Customers are eschewing the typical breakfast-lunch- dinner/appetizer-entrée-dessert model in favor of "fast-casual" menus and service (think Panera, Chipotle or Cosi as examples). Even better if these menus are also available throughout the property, especially in social-gathering areas like the lobby, pool or bar. Some hotels are also experimenting with "pop-up" restaurants - a temporary dining option with edgy menus and design served in unexpected locations (like rooftops or lobbies) - as a way to keep things energetic and fresh. Another trend which applies to both food and wine is the option to purchase food and beverages in multiple sizes. Some operations are giving their customers the opportunity to choose - a three ounce pour of wine or a nine-ounce pour; a six-ounce filet or a twelve-ounce - the customers decide their portion size and pay accordingly. The August issue of the Hotel Business Review will document all these trends and challenges in the food and beverage sector, and report on what some leading hotels are doing to enhance this area of their business.