Bankruptcy protection sought by Holder casino group |

Bankruptcy protection sought by Holder casino group

Brendan Riley / Associated Press Writer

Six northern Nevada casinos controlled by businessman Hal Holder Sr. have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, heading off efforts to get a court-appointed receiver to take over the clubs.

The federal bankruptcy court filings by the six properties, including the shut-down Silver Club in Sparks, automatically stay a Washoe County District order last week appointing a receiver sought by a company holding a $33 million defaulted loan note.

“This is the best move we could make to make sure five of the six properties stay open and our employees stay on the job while Holder Hospitality Group restructures its debt,” spokesman Tom Clark said Tuesday. “We don’t see the other five properties closing any time soon.”

Besides the Silver Club, the properties include the Commercial Casino and Stockmen’s Casino Hotel in Elko, Scoreboard Casino in Spring Creek, the El Capitan in Hawthorne and Parker’s Model T Casino in Winnemucca.

Holder also operates or has operated several other Nevada casinos, although they’re not part of the receivership or bankruptcy proceedings. Holder Hospitality Group put all its Nevada properties up for sale in early 2007, hoping to get more than $200 million, but potential buyers faced difficulty securing credit as the economy worsened.

Holder, represented in the bankruptcy proceeding by attorney Steve Harris, bought his first Nevada casino in 1999 and eventually wound up with 13 properties and nearly 1,500 employees. His casino investments followed a string of successes in business turnarounds in Michigan and Florida.

The filing in federal bankruptcy court on Friday stayed the separate receivership process started in state district court by the note-holder, Northern Nevada Asset Holdings LLC, which acquired the $33 million note for $8.5 million from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. The FDIC got the note following a bankruptcy filing by a bank that originally made the loan to Holder, Clark said.

Northern Nevada Asset Holdings is headed by Richard Holland and Thomas Reinhard of Colorado Springs, Colo. Holland owns more than 80 restaurants in the Midwest and West, as well as three Cripple Creek, Colo., casinos.

The LLC’s Nevada representatives include longtime gambling industry attorney and executive Jeff Silver of Henderson.

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