ATLANTIC CITY — A major restaurant and entertainment complex operator with locations in three states has approached the city about a possible development on an Atlantic City pier.
Mayor Don Guardian spoke about the possibility of a Latitude 360 complex coming to the city Friday during the Sound Off for South Jersey Legislative Conference at Harrah’s Resort. He said the operator has considered locations at both The Pier Shops at Caesars and Central Pier, located at St. James Place and the Boardwalk.
“It’s like Xbox meets the Steel Pier. If you know Dave & Busters, that would be the $3 million version, and Latitude 360 is the $30 million version,” Guardian said, adding that negotiations are ongoing.
If a deal is reached, construction could start this summer, he said.
Messages left for representatives of Latitude 360 were not immediately returned Friday night. On its website, the company describes itself as a restaurant and entertainment company that operates venues between 35,000 and 85,000 square feet. It has locations in Jacksonville, Fla., Pittsburgh and Indianapolis that feature restaurants, bowling lanes, movie theaters, game rooms, HD sports theaters, stand-up comedy venues, bars and dance areas.
On Thursday, the company issued a statement about a corporate rebranding strategy intended to prepare the company for future growth. According to the statement, the company has identified five locations where it expects to open new facilities over the next two years.
In a statement, Latitude 360 CEO and founder Brent Brown described the facilities as high-end and said a “ripple effect” brings customers back for more.
“For example, a guest might come to Latitude 360 the first time for an evening meal with family but return for a company event or a game-day experience on a future visit,” Brown said.
Lisa Johnson, a spokeswoman for The Pier Shops at Caesars, wouldn’t comment on whether the four-story pier that includes a number of luxury retailers has had discussions with Latitude 360.
A group of lenders, including U.S. Bank National Association, bought the mall that juts out over the Atlantic Ocean for $25 million in a 2011 foreclosure sale. It is managed by Cushman & Wakefield.
“The Pier Shops is always exploring new opportunities for tenants, but until a lease is signed, we can’t comment,” Johnson said.
Central Pier, which houses Boardwalk games and shops, is owned by Schiff Enterprises in Atlantic City. The company could not be reached Friday.
Guardian said Resorts Casino Hotel’s owner, Morris Bailey, connected him with Latitude 360. Bailey, Guardian said, loves the Boardwalk and was hoping additional development for families could be added. Since the creation of the Atlantic City Tourism District in 2011, the state has pushed for nongambling development.
Guardian said he fully supports the company’s efforts and hopes a deal can be reached.
“I wouldn’t call this just family entertainment,” Guardian said. “I’d call it fun.”
Contact Jennifer Bogdan:
@ACPressJennifer on Twitter
Contact Anjalee Khemlani:
@AnjKhem on Twitter