Miracle Mile Shops on the Las Vegas Strip has been sold — again.
An affiliate of Institutional Mall Investors LLC, a coinvestment venture owned by Miller Capital Advisory Inc. and CalPERS purchased the shopping center from Boulevard Invest LLC, a partnership between Tristar Capital and RFR Holdings. The price of the deal was not disclosed, but sources said it was about $1.1 billion.
“We’re extremely proud of the job our entire team has done over the last decade, weathering Las Vegas’ economic downturn and rebounding to make Miracle Mile Shops one of the 10 busiest malls in the country,” said Tristar’s David Edelstein. “With its location, tenant mix and the continued growth of Las Vegas, we believe Miracle Mile Shops is ideally poised to continue its upward trajectory. We’re confident that Institutional Mall Investors is the right company to take the center to the next level.”
Miracle Mile Shops has a checkered history. Launched in 2000 as the Shops in Desert Passage, the mall, which has 200 stores, was an annex to the former Aladdin Hotel, which went bankrupt and was bought by Planet Hollywood. Tristar and RFR in 2004 took ownership of the mall.
After a $1 billion transformation in 2007 that turned the Aladdin into Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, the mall was given a once-over. Kasbah lamps, Moorish archways and Middle Eastern-style bazaars made way for oversize video screens, black slate flooring and glass storefronts, and the center was rebranded as Miracle Mile Shops, a nod to the stretch of Wilshire Boulevard that was once Los Angeles’ premier shopping destination.
Miracle Mile Shops is anchored by the Axis Theatre, which is the permanent venue for Britney Spears and Jennifer Lopez. It has 13 restaurants, three additional theaters for live entertainment and direct access to Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino’s 100,000-square-foot casino and 2,567 guest rooms.
Retailers at Miracle Mile include MAC Cosmetics, Guess, H&M, French Connection, Sephora, BCBG Max Azria, Club Tattoo and Flight 23 at Footaction, among others. The center has a decided downmarket aspect compared with some of Las Vegas’ retail options, including Bellagio’s Chanel, Dior, Fendi and Gucci. And there’s more coming: The Wynn in 2017 will unveil Wynn Plaza with 75,000 square feet of retiling. That will bring Wynn’s total retail square footage to 174,000.
Boulevard Invest is hoping Miracle Mile’s restaurants, including Buffalo Wild Wings, Nacho Daddy, a 15,000-square-foot Cabo Wabo Cantina and Sin City Brewing Co., attract consumers.
“Las Vegas continues to set record visitor numbers and that is certainly reflected in the traffic we see at Miracle Mile Shops,” said Andrew Miller, ceo of Miller Capital Advisory, which is managing the property. “The world-class mix of tenants appeals to a broad demographic and we expect to continue to build on the mall’s current success.”
But the Strip in recent years has become increasingly crowded with retail. Every resort and casino boasts its own mini-mall, centers such as the Shops at the Crystals have opened, and then there are stalwarts such as Las Vegas Fashion Show and the Shops at Caesars Palace.
Asked whether Las Vegas was becoming overstored, Robert K. Futterman, who leased Miracle Mile’s inaugural retail, at the time said, “People will shop as long as they keep building hotel rooms, because what do you do in Vegas? Besides, retailers want as many opportunities as possible to get their brands in front of consumers.”
Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP was the advisor to the ownership group for this transaction as part of a capitalization advisory strategy that included a refinancing of Miracle Mile Shops in 2013.