SBE Entertainment Group is painting the town red through its trendy hotel, restaurant, real estate, and entertainment businesses. The privately held company acquires, develops, and manages ventures such the Miami Ritz Plaza and the SLS Hotel at Beverly Hills. Its luxury SLS Hotels brand stands for style, luxury, service. SBE's Los Angeles-centric restaurant, bar, and nightclub holdings include hot spots such as Area, Hyde, Gladstone's, The Abbey Food & Bar, and Katsuya, which are frequented by young Hollywood stars. The company is owned by Sam Nazarian, a wealthy young entrepreneur from Beverly Hills.
SBE also provides event production services through its Bolthouse Productions division, and produces movies through its Element Films outfit. Its real estate holdings include residential properties in California, Florida, and Illinois, and commercial property in Southern California.
The company was founded in 2002 by Nazarian, who purchased the famed Sahara Hotel and Casino on the Las Vegas strip (along with private-investment partner Stockbridge Capital) in 2007 for about $300 million. Despite initial plans to make extensive renovations to the 55-year-old property, SBE opted to close the hotel and casino down in 2011. – less