by • 29 October, 2008 • REAL ESTATEComments (0)1249

WSJ Round-Up: MGM Mirage hits pause, Trump Chicago holds on for dear life…

In a bleak roundup today, the Wall Street Journal reported that MGM Mirage will suspend work on its Las Vegas and Atlantic City casino ventures, after it reported a Q3 net income drop of 67%. MGM Grand Atlantic City and its $11B CityCenter both have broken ground, putting MGM in a tight spot as its stock continues to drop and its bonds descend into the junk territory, even after its moderately successful Macau opening last year. Says the WSJ,

“Casino revenue decreased 8%, mainly due to a 13% fall in table games volume at its Las Vegas Strip properties…Room revenue dropped 10% as occupancy rates fell to 95% from 97% on the Strip. where revenue per available room fell 10% as the average daily room rate dropped 9%.”

In positive news, Las Vegas tops our list of places to take a cheap vacation!

Trump Chicago Rises, as Trump’s Profit Margins Shrink

The lovely Trump Chicago, occupying the old Sun Times building’s space, is struggling to sell in a worsening housing market, and an even worse retail market  – bad news, as Trump is banking on the sale of the building’s prime retail space. Here’s some cold, hard facts regarding Trump’s standing from the WSJ:

Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

“The shiny glass skyscraper is one of the few that the brash Mr. Trump developed without partners. The situation also puts pressure on one of the project’s major lenders, Fortress Investment Group LLC.

So far, Mr. Trump has lined up buyers for a bit less than $600 million of condo units and condo-hotel units in a residential market that has virtually seized up. Yet he owes lenders as much as $1 billion when the loans are due, according to public records and several people familiar with the project. He has closed around $200 million in sales so far, with roughly $380 million still in contract. The retail portion of the giant building is for sale, at a time of rising vacancies for retail space in Chicago and one of the worst eras for retailers in years.”

For Trump, it has taken a long time to make it this far, and many wonder if Chicago buyers will bother if no drastic price reductions are made – particularly as Chicagoans enter their historically nasty winter season where sales and the mercury drop dramatically. Still, Trump Chicago is a looker…

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