Tuesday, April 27, 2010


When the president of the United States advises big business to stay clear of resort areas such as Las Vegas for their conventions, big business takes that to mean places like Reno and Lake Tahoe as well. The result? Big business in these convention towns begin to fail, and fail big. With the overall national economy in peril, tourism is down across-the-board. And convention business, long being the life blood of these areas, becomes even more vital to the survival to these resort areas. Today another resort's future just got a little more bleak, as did the future of many working Nevadans.

The latest collapse comes to the north shore of Lake Tahoe: The Ritz-Carlton's Highlands resort, a premier resort and major employer in the north shore area, has filed default papers with the Bank of America in Placer county, which means foreclosure is close at hand. This news places further economic burdens on an already beleaguered resort area. From the Sacramento Bee:

"The new Ritz-Carlton luxury hotel at Lake Tahoe has gone into default, the latest sign of trouble for the lake economy and one of its top developers.

The default notice is the first step toward possible foreclosure. It was filed against the
Northstar-area hotel March 31, about a month after its developer, East West Resort Development of Avon, Colo., put nearly $1 billion worth of Northstar real estate development into bankruptcy reorganization."

Alongside Obama is Nevada senator Harry Reid--a potty trained lap-dog for Obama's economic policies--who has done little to nothing to bolster his state's economic future. As a result, Reid will continue skiing uphill into the senatorial elections, but probably not at the Highland's Resort in Tahoe.

Tourism and convention business is a big slice of the revenue Nevada takes in to keep the state afloat. But with Reid's lack of leadership in promoting his own state and policies favorable to it, Nevada is experiencing the brutal facts of economic reality. And soon the people of Nevada will be inviting Reid to gorge himself at an all-you-can-eat buffet, featuring a heapin' helpin' of political reality.

Note to Searchlight, Nevada-- your home town socialist is headed your way for an extended stay. Please welcome him home with open arms. It's time for a change, and the people of Nevada know it. Harry Reid knows it too. Since Harry Reid won't fight for you, consider putting Sharron Angle in the ring.

NOISYROOM for more financial news.

UPDATE: Since I've visited the north and south shores of Lake Tahoe and Reno many times, I always think of the area as Nevada. The state line runs right thru the center of the lake. The Ritz resort is on the California side of the lake, however, policies from Nevada affect the entire Tahoe resort region. As Reno goes, so goes Lake Tahoe, so to speak. And many of the workers in these resorts commute from Nevada because of prohibitive living costs associated with the Tahoe area.

I contacted the Ritz this morning and discussed the situation. A spokesperson said the financial problems with the property owner will not affect the operation of the hotel resort. The owner is now in negotiations with the bank to secure funding to bring it in line with current obligations.

When I asked if the resort would continue to operate in the event the owner in fact goes into foreclosure, the reply was that someone else would step in, buy the resort and it would continue to operate as usual. Rather optimistic, I'd say. But, the property is located in one of the most breath-taking areas on the planet. If you've never had the pleasure of visiting the Tahoe area, put it on your list of things to do before you die.

Here's a few pics I took from on top of the mountain at Tahoe.


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