Sparks-Based Company Buys Four Northeast Nevada Casinos

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The Sparks-based Holder Hospitality Group has purchased four casinos in northeast Nevada, including two landmark gambling halls in Elko.

Full House Inc., owned by Marcy and Jack Simon of Las Vegas, sold all four properties. A purchase price was not disclosed.

The Elko casinos - Stockmen's Hotel Casino and the Commercial Casino - are local institutions. The latter property features a giant polar bear on its exterior.

Also involved in the deal were the Scoreboard Casino in nearby Spring Creek and the Red Garter Casino in West Wendover along the Utah line.

The purchase gives Holder Hospitality nine casinos on or near Interstate 80 in northern Nevada. The company owns four other casinos across the state.

The deal had been in the works for about a year, said Hal Holder, chief executive officer and principal owner of Holder Hospitality.

"The projections for continued population growth in the state, plus increased traffic counts on Interstate 80 and other arterial routes, causes us to be quite comfortable with our program of continuing to invest new capital to grow our company," Holder said.

The company has applied with the Nevada Gaming Control Board to acquire Full House. Final action by the board is expected by fall.

Plans call for management and employees to be kept in place at all four casinos. No other major changes are expected.

Hal Holder bought his first casinos in 1999 - the Silver Club in Sparks and El Capitan in Hawthorne.

Since then, he has acquired properties in Fernley, Gardnerville, Winnemucca and Henderson. Another property is under construction in Tonopah.

The 72-year-old Holder plans to take part of his operations public later this year.