Searchlight’s main commercial drag up for sale
Properties include Searchlight Nugget Casino, El Rey Motel, former brothel
6 February 2013
6 Feb. 2013 3:52 p.m.
Looking to buy a casino, a former brothel and nearly all other commercial property in Searchlight?
Open your wallets, because the town’s primary real estate is for sale — for a mere $5 million.
The Doing family, which owns the main businesses and commercial land in town, put their 41 acres of holdings on the market on Monday. Their properties include the Searchlight Nugget Casino, an attached 92-seat restaurant and the 21-room El Rey Motel.
Also up for sale: about 25 to 30 lots, some of which are vacant and some of which are occupied by residential trailers, and six commercial buildings, one of which was a “house of ill repute” that now houses casino workers, said Fred Marik, listing broker with Las Vegas Commercial & Business Sales.
The brothel initially catered to laborers building the Hoover Dam in the 1930s.
“It’s a strange place to rent a room,” Marik said with a laugh.
Warren and Verlie Doing moved to Searchlight in 1967 from Northern Nevada and built the Nugget, the only full casino in town, in 1979. The family now owns most land near the main intersection of U.S. 95 and State Route 164.
Warren died in the 1980s, and 88-year-old Verlie lives in an apartment above the Nugget. Their kids weren’t interested in operating the businesses, so the family is selling.
The properties generated $1.85 million in revenue last year, according to Marik’s sales brochure.
Searchlight, about an hour south of Las Vegas, is an unincorporated town with only 539 residents as of 2010, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. There are no stoplights, including at the main intersection, which according to Marik gets about 9,000 vehicles passing through each day.
The town’s most famous resident is Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. He is friends with Verlie Doing, Marik said.
In a statement, Reid said he has known the Doing family "forever," adding they've been "so kind to me and my family" and have done much for the community.
"Nothing gets done in Searchlight without the Doings," he said.
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