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Howard Stutz

Nevada's Buffalo Bill's closed until Christmas Eve

30 November 2010

LAS VEGAS, Nevada -- Herbst Gaming closed Buffalo Bill's in Primm until Christmas Eve while the company renovates the property's 1,242 rooms and portions of the casino.

Only the concert series at the Star of the Desert Arena remains open.

Hotel guests with reservations will be moved to the company's two other Primm resorts, Whiskey Pete's or Primm Valley.

The three resorts at the California-Nevada border at Interstate 15 operate 2,643 hotel rooms.

Some 250 employees who work at the three properties will be affected. Some will take vacation days; others will be furloughed but will be eligible for unemployment compensation.

The renovations include remodeled guest rooms and an conservation program to install energy-efficient light bulbs to Buffalo Bill's interior.

During the room renovation, Herbst will add a Denny's restaurant to replace the property's coffee shop.

Herbst Gaming is the company left after a judge approved a bankruptcy reorganization plan in which Herbst brothers Ed, Tim and Troy ceded ownership and control of the casino and slot machine route operation they'd founded and built.

The bankruptcy reorganization wiped $1.1 billion in debt off the books but left a consortium of lenders, including a Connecticut-based hedge fund, owning the business.