With Revel price tag sliding, Florida developer signs new deal for former casino

 The Revel is on the left in this 2015 photo of Atlantic City. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

The Revel is on the left in this 2015 photo of Atlantic City. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

A deal to buy Atlantic City’s Revel casino is moving forward just as the building’s former tenants are pressing on in court.

Afraid of losing the millions of dollars they poured into the site, disgruntled tenants of the shuttered casino are hoping the new owner doesn’t wipe away their investment.

Florida developer Glenn Straub has signed a new deal to buy Revel for $82 million, a 97 percent discount on the $2.4 billion cost of constructing the flashy building.

The sale price is $13 million less than Straub’s original offer of $95 million, a deal that fell apart before its deadline. A $10 million deposit from that offer, which some thought would be lost, was applied toward the new purchase price. In other words, Straub paid $72 million in cash for the building.

But still lurking are legal claims from former tenants, including IDEA Boardwalk. That company invested around $16 million to build out two nightclubs and a day club connected to Revel.

Company officials say they’re still protected until their lease ends, and that Straub’s new plans shouldn’t wash away their business.

“It’s not like you would need to walk through the front door, go up the escalators, go on the casino floor and then go to the various restaurants,” said Barry Roy, the tenants’ attorney. “Our pool club is right on the Boardwalk.”

A hearing on the lease dispute is scheduled for May.

Another hanging issue is the money owed to ACR Energy, Revel’s utility provider. That company is fighting to square away $20 million of energy debt.

Straub, meanwhile, hopes to have part of the building open by this summer, including a spa and recreation center.

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