Empire Resorts Submits Sullivan County Casino Proposal to New York State Gaming Facility Location Board

  Empire Resorts Submits Sullivan County Casino Proposal to New York State
  Gaming Facility Location Board

                  Company Also Announces Committed Financing

Business Wire

MONTICELLO, N.Y. -- June 30, 2014

Empire Resorts, Inc. (NASDAQ-GM:NYNY) (together with its subsidiaries,
“Empire”), through a wholly-owned subsidiary, Montreign Operating Company,
LLC, has submitted its application to the New York State Gaming Facility
Location Board (“NYSGFLB”) for a casino to be located 90 miles from New York
City in the Town of Thompson, in Sullivan County, NY. The casino resort will
be called “Montreign Resort Casino” and will be located at the site of
Adelaar, which is owned by EPR Properties (NYSE:EPR) (“EPR”). A complete
branding initiative around the Montreign Resort Casino will be unveiled in the
coming weeks.

The total combined investment in the Montreign Resort Casino and Adelaar is
expected to be in excess of $1 billion, which includes $630 million from
Empire and additional EPR financing investments for a waterpark hotel and
adventure park, Rees Jones redesigned “Monster” Golf Course and retail,
restaurant, shopping and entertainment properties. The size of the project,
including the amount of capital necessary to complete it, will vary based upon
the number and location of competitive licenses issued by New York State in
our region. The project has in place essentially all of its approvals and
permits to commence construction immediately upon the awarding of a
destination gaming facility license.

To support its application, Empire has obtained commitments to provide
financing from Credit Suisse AG and Kien Huat Realty III, Limited (“Kien
Huat”), Empire’s largest stockholder. Credit Suisse AG has committed to
provide a senior secured credit facility in an amount of up to $478,000,000.
The credit facility is subject to various conditions precedent, including
Montreign’s receipt of a gaming facility license and evidence of an equity
investment in Empire of up to $150,000,000. Empire may launch a rights
offering to meet the equity investment requirement. If Empire launches a
rights offering in support of the Montreign Resort Casino, Kien Huat has
agreed to exercise its proportionate share of subscription rights that would
be issued and, additionally, to exercise all subscription rights not otherwise
exercised by other holders, upon the same terms as the other holders. Empire
expects that the commitments demonstrate its ability to finance the costs and
expenses of constructing the proposed Montreign Resort Casino. Nonetheless,
Empire has reserved the flexibility to reassess its financing alternatives if
it is awarded a gaming facility license.

“After years of planning and community engagement, we believe our Montreign
Resort Casino, and the non-gaming resort attractions that encompass the
overall Adelaar master plan, is exactly the type of tourism driven development
envisioned by the Upstate New York Gaming Economic Development Act,” said
Emanuel Pearlman, Chairman of the Board of Empire. “Importantly, given a
process that permits either one or two casino licenses in our region, Empire
has the advantage of committed financing in place, no matter the competitive
environment. We are confident that if selected, our best proposal can fully
rejuvenate Sullivan County and the entire Hudson Valley economy.”

“We are very excited to partner with Empire in taking this next important step
in realizing the vision we have held to and worked towards for years,”
commented David Brain, President and CEO of EPR Properties. Brain continued,
“Quite simply, there is no other location which equals the breadth of
offerings we deliver as a four season destination resort. Our guests will come
for world class golf, a first-class waterpark lodge and a special gaming
experience along with dining and shopping close by, all set in the beautiful
Catskills. Adelaar is uniquely positioned to reinvigorate the upstate New York
economy and we are ready to get started.”

“We’ve been working with Empire for nearly three years, and included in this
filing is Sullivan County’s hopes and dreams of a better economic future,”
added Sullivan County Legislature Chairman Scott Samuelson. “This casino
project and the entire Adelaar resort development will drive significant
tourism, and is clearly the economic boost that our County needs. We could not
be more supportive of Empire and EPR’s plans.”

“This project will be a source of pride and true economic development for
everyone in the Town of Thompson and Sullivan County,” said Thompson
Supervisor Bill Rieber. “The Town of Thompson has granted this project full
SEQRA approvals, making this application a front runner that can rapidly
deliver the jobs and economic opportunity the Town of Thompson and Sullivan
County so richly deserve.”

Peter Ward, president of the New York Hotel Motel Trades Council, which
represents over 30,000 hotel, hospitality and gaming workers in New York and
New Jersey said, “This casino resort project will bring new energy to a
depressed region of New York State by creating dependable local union
employment, while delivering significant economic benefits for local
businesses, and consequently will have an important and positive impact on
tourism in upstate New York. Empire is not only a current strong union
partner, but a strong community partner, committed to creating good union jobs
in a region that desperately needs them.”

“The entire brotherhood of the Hudson Valley Building & Construction Trades
Council is in complete support of this project,” said Todd Diorio, President
of the Trades Council. “Empire has substantially completed construction
drawings and its Project Labor Agreement is complete. Our members are looking
forward to building this project.”

Cathy Paty, President and CEO of the Sullivan County Chamber of Commerce
added, “Adelaar is an amazing project which will provide development for many
years to come. It will bring financial gains across the board for both
Sullivan County residents and local businesses. Adelaar is the spark that
Sullivan County needs to thrive once again.”

Sullivan County Partnership CEO Marc Baez stated, “This application moves
Sullivan County and the Catskills one step closer to reviving our standing as
a world class resort destination. We have already seen what Empire can do for
local businesses in this region, and we know the benefits will be far greater
if this project is approved. Our community is 100% behind it.”

“The Sullivan County and Catskills tourism industry will benefit greatly from
the addition of Adelaar to our community,” said Roberta Byron-Lockwood,
President and CEO of the Sullivan County Visitors Association. “Resort guests
and employees alike will undoubtedly explore the Sullivan County and Catskills
area, and our businesses are ready to welcome them with open arms. This resort
will afford us growth in room inventory as well positioning in the domestic
and international travel industry marketplace.”.

Empire has recently entered into a memorandum of understanding (“MOU”) with
the Upstate Theater Coalition for a FairGame LLC (“Fairgame”), a coalition of
upstate theatres and venues that includes Bethel Woods Center for the Arts,
Ulster Performing Arts Center and Bardavon Opera House. Darlene Fedun, Bethel
Woods CEO stated, “I am happy to report that we have executed a MOU with
Empire Resorts which is part of the siting evaluation criteria for a Gaming
License in the Catskill Region. Bethel Woods already knows Empire as a great
local partner and Empire understood the concerns of our potentially impacted
venues, readily and openly discussed options and solutions, and have committed
to the support of the mission of all venues within the region. Bethel Woods
and the Fairgame coalition both support Empire’s application for a casino
license.”

Mr. Pearlman concluded, “Led by our CEO Joseph D’Amato and Empire’s Executive
management team, a stellar team of 29 professional firms and a wide variety of
other experts worked tirelessly to submit this comprehensive response to the
NYSGFLB’s Request for Applications for a gaming facility license. A remarkably
voluminous submission, this comprehensive work product represents over three
years of dedication and hard work. After it is reviewed by the NYSGFLB, we
look forward to making our public presentation as soon as possible.”

About Empire Resorts

Empire Resorts owns and operates, through its subsidiary Monticello Raceway
Management, Inc., the Monticello Casino & Raceway, a harness racing track and
casino located in Monticello, New York, and is 90 miles from midtown
Manhattan. Further information is available atwww.empireresorts.com.

Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward Looking Information

This press release includes "forward-looking statements" intended to qualify
for the safe harbor from liability established by the Private Securities
Litigation Reform Act of 1995.These statements include statements about our
plans, strategies, financial performance, prospects or future events and
involve known and unknown risks that are difficult to predict. As a result,
our actual results, performance or achievements may differ materially from
those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. In some cases,
you can identify forward-looking statements by the use of words such as "may,"
"could," "expect," "intend," "plan," "seek," "anticipate," "believe,"
"estimate," "predict," "potential," "continue," "likely," "will," "would" and
variations of these terms and similar expressions, or the negative of these
terms or similar expressions. Such forward-looking statements are necessarily
based upon estimates and assumptions that, while considered reasonable by
Empire and its management team, are inherently uncertain. Factors that may
cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations include,
among others, levels of spending in business and leisure segments as well as
consumer confidence; the parties' plans for signing and closing on definitive
transaction documents; the construction commencement date for the development
project; relationships with associates and labor unions and changes in labor
law; the financial condition of, and our relationships with, third-party
property owners and hospitality venture partners; risk associated with the
introduction of new brand concepts; changes in the competitive environment in
our industry and the markets where we operate; the timing of the receipt of
regulatory and governmental approvals for the development project, including
the issuance of a gaming facility license to us, changes in federal, state or
local tax law; general volatility of the capital markets. A more complete
description of these risks and uncertainties can be found in the filings of
Empire with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. We caution you not to
place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements, which are made as of
the date of this press release. We undertake no obligation to update publicly
any of these forward-looking statements to reflect actual results, new
information or future events, changes in assumptions or changes in other
factors affecting forward-looking statements, except to the extent required by
applicable laws. If we update one or more forward-looking statements, no
inference should be drawn that we will make additional updates with respect to
those or other forward-looking statements.

Contact:

Empire Resorts, Inc.
Charles Degliomini, 845-807-0001
cdegliomini@empireresorts.com
 
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