Diamond Inn Auction Fails to Find Buyer for Las Vegas Strip Motel

Posted on: March 17, 2024, 03:27h. 

Last updated on: March 17, 2024, 03:27h.

An auction for the former Diamond Inn Motel on the Las Vegas Strip’s southern end failed to find a buyer willing to pony up the $12.5 million minimum asking price.

Diamond Inn Las Vegas auction
An aerial view of the shuttered Diamond Inn in Las Vegas. A recent auction for the motel with Strip frontage failed to secure a minimum bid. (Image: J.P. King Auction Company)

Alabama-based real estate auction house J.P. King closed the bidding window for the shuttered motel last Thursday. Auction officials told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that there was strong interest in the 48-room hotel famed for its nostalgic pink elephant that’s stood in front of the property for decades.

We feel the auction identified several serious and interested buyers across the globe and many are continuing to do their due diligence,” a J.P. King spokesperson said.

The Diamond Inn sits on 1.36 acres and has 237 feet of road frontage on S. Las Vegas Blvd., aka the Strip. The motel, located at 4605 S. Las Vegas Blvd., is across from the Mandalay Bay Convention Center and is near Harry Reid International Airport and the “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” sign. 

Diamond in the Rough

The motel is billed as a “redevelopment opportunity” by the auction company. The property is zoned for commercial use and a structure standing as tall as 505 feet has been authorized. That means a tower with up to 36 floors could be built. 

The location doesn’t get much foot traffic, but the property neighbors a 2.2-acre site that was sold for nearly $13 million in 2022 to Elon Musk’s Boring Company for a future Vegas Loop station. The auctioneers say the Diamond Inn presents a grand opportunity for a casino developer, as the motel’s 237 feet of Strip frontage is lengthier than the Paris, MGM Grand, and Venetian casino resorts.

The southern end of the Strip has become alive in recent years because of the opening of the $1.9 billion Allegiant Stadium. The home of the NFL Las Vegas Raiders is about a half-mile walk from the Diamond Inn.

The Diamond Inn is walking distance to all major attractions, making it an excellent and rare investment opportunity for a world-class resort in a prime location,” the auction listing read. “This site isn’t just about its illustrious history; it’s a development haven for visionaries. With Elon Musk’s innovative transportation projects materializing close by, the location is set to become even more of a nexus for luxury and advancement.”

Motel History

The Diamond Inn opened as a motel in 1955. The property owners did little to the property over its many decades of existence, though the motel did receive a fresh coat of paint in 2016.

The motel was a popular destination among budget travelers in Southern Nevada. The Diamond Inn maintained a 3.2/5 rating on Google. However, more recent reviews complained about bed bugs, roaches, foul odors, and bathrooms in desperate need of repair.

Not the worst hotel in Las Vegas but damn close,” read a review posted in September.

The lodging establishment closed in September 2023 after a 68-year run. The future of its pink elephant is unclear.

The exact origin of the elephant statute isn’t known. The hotel website claims it was originally part of Disney World, though there’s no evidence to back up that assertion. The elephant once made trumpet noises, but after several vehicle accidents were blamed on the startling noise, county officials ordered the hotel to remove the sound mechanism.

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