Say goodbye to Harrah’s Reno and hello to Reno City Center.
The longstanding gaming icon in the heart of downtown Reno is set to undergo a transformation as a mixed-use property after its sale to Las Vegas-based real estate group CAI Investments. The hotel-casino was sold by VICI Properties and Caesars Entertainment for $50 million.
Once the project is finished, the remodeled building will feature about 530 market-rate apartments, 150,000 square feet of new office space and 78,500 square feet of retail. Retail offerings will include food options such as restaurants, a bar, coffee shop and grocery store. Reno City Center will also have a gym as well as entertainment set in a park-like setting, according to CAI. Plans also factor in the east tower but remain fluid, CAI told the Reno Gazette Journal.
One thing the reimagined Harrah’s Reno site will not have is gambling. Reno City Center is planned to be a strictly non-gaming facility.
The goal with the property is to offer much-needed housing, office and services to the downtown Reno market — all of which are instrumental in the continued diversification of the Reno economy, said CAI Investments CEO Chris Beavor. Fulfilling these needs are especially important if Reno wants to continue attracting new businesses and employees to the region, he added. Beavor pointed to data from the Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority that listed outdoors recreation as the No. 1 reason people like Reno. The main thing people don’t like about the Biggest Little City? That would be its downtown.
“When people think, ‘Do I want to live in the Reno market?’ that first impression when they get here could be the difference between making a startup firm here successful by attracting two to three key hires,” Beavor said.
The Harrah’s Reno property checks off a lot of boxes for CAI’s live-work-play approach to projects. This includes enough space to provide housing for hundreds of downtown workers as well as parking, workspace and services they can use, according to Beavor.