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$250 Million Construction Loan & Sale-Leaseback

Updated: Aug 31, 2023

(CHICAGO), August 29th, 2023—O’Rourke LLP client 815 Entertainment, LLC (“815”) has entered into a tax-advantaged sale-leaseback transaction with Gaming and Leisure Properties, Inc. (NASDAQ: GLPI) (“GLPI”), a real estate investment trust specializing in casino properties, whereby GLPI has acquired the land associated with the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Rockford, Illinois for $100 million and simultaneously entered into a 99-year ground lease with an affiliate of 815. In addition to the ground lease, GLPI has also committed to providing up to $150 million in development and construction funding for the completion of the permanent casino. The transaction between GLPI and 815, which holds an exclusive Hard Rock brand license, will segue and culminate in the Grand Opening of the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Rockford in September of 2024.

The ~180,000 sq. ft. permanent casino expected to open in September 2024 and feature a ~60,000 sq. ft. gaming floor will include 1,300 slot machines, 44 live table games, 6 live poker tables, and an in-person and online sportsbooks. To date, 815 has operated “A Hard Rock Opening Act”, Rockford’s temporary casino with a ~20,000 sq. ft. gaming floor, which opened in November 2021, the first casino to open under the Gaming Expansion Act signed by Governor Pritzker which generated ~$55M in 2022 and ~$40M thus far in 2023. 815 is owned by diverse local investors and Hard Rock.

O’Rourke partners, including supervising attorney Terence M. Dunleavy and Andrew Levine, acted as regulatory and transactional counsel to 815 throughout the transaction with GLPI.

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