Penn National Gaming Inc. (Nasdaq: PENN) is buying the Tropicana Las Vegas Casino Hotel Resort for $360 million, as "Sin City" slowly recovers after being hit hard by the recession.

Tropicana Las Vegas has 1,500 guest rooms, a 50,000 square-foot casino, three restaurants, a performance theater, a comedy club and other amenities. The venue has completed more than $200 million in renovations in the past four years, including updating guest rooms to have a South Beach theme.

"The planned acquisition of Tropicana Las Vegas establishes a strong presence on the Las Vegas Strip for Penn National Gaming, fulfilling an important long-term strategic objective for the company. With a $360 million acquisition cost, we believe we have structured a prudent transaction to own and operate a premier [Las Vegas] strip asset at an attractive price of entry," says Timothy Wilmott, Penn National CEO.

Tropicana Las Vegas is being sold by Toronto private equity firm Onex Corp. (TSX: OCX). 

Penn National, which operates 26 other gaming locations, has been thinking about making an acquisition in Las Vegas for years, the company says. The business' other locations are in Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, West Virginia and Ontario.

Though things have been looking up for Las Vegas recently, many area properties are still having financial problems. Losses have been mounting for years for the Las Vegas Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, and Caesars Entertainment filed for bankruptcy in January.

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