Cal Neva Lodge Bankruptcy Sale in May 2017

by Mark Lowenstern


North Lake Tahoe’s Cal Neva Lodge is steeped in history. The original property was built in 1926, rebuilt in 1930 after a fire and was purchased in 1960 by Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. The resort hotel-casino was operated by numerous owners and it went into bankruptcy in 2013 with the Criswell-Radovan, LLC group purchasing the property. The Criswell-Radovan group announced a re-opening for December 2014, followed by a few announced construction delays and filed bankruptcy in 2016.


In the fall of 2016, the Reno based U.S. Federal bankruptcy court was assigned the case against the Criswell-Radovan group. The case transferred from the Santa Rosa federal court office because many of the 40 plus liens filed were Nevada-based sub-contractors and investors.


In 2016, the Cal-Neva was listed for sale with San Francisco’s CBRE hotel division. March 22, 2017 became the court bid date for offers with the set opening bid in the $34 million range. Once the first bid was received, other bidders could submit offers requiring a 10% bid increase and the highest final offer would take over the Cal Neva.  There were three groups interested in the Cal-Neva.  No bids were received by the court. 


With a current status of no offers, the Reno federal courts may receive a bankruptcy bid as early as May 2, 2017. The buyer might be able to purchase foregoing all junior liens and a purchase price somewhere in the $25 million range. This potential bankruptcy sales status means local investor groups and local sub-contractors are probably not receivers of the final bankruptcy funds distribution.


The great news is there should be a new owner and this property is a key economic boost for North Lake Tahoe’s tourism industry. The rooms in the hotel tower are fully remodeled. The casino, restaurants and other hotel facilities require around $24 million to fully complete the project.


Chase International Real Estate Truckee, CA

Mark Lowenstern is a real estate agent with Chase International Truckee. He has a California residential property listing neighboring the Cal Neva.