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5 Billionaires Are Fighting to Bring a Massive 'James Bond' Casino to This Retailer

The three-floor casino will be, in true James Bond fashion, "spectacular" and it will mark the latest transformation for a major name in retail.
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It might feel like you're in a movie when you visit the casino, but how many times have you actually been in a casino from a movie? 

The answer to that is probably very few unless, of course, you're Matt Damon or George Clooney.

That is, of course, until now. Luxury retailer Saks Fifth Avenue is developing a project to bring a three-floor casino to its flagship store in New York City. The casino will be modeled after "Casino Royale," and start on the ninth floor of the massive retailer.

CEO of Saks parent company HBC Richard Baker says the casino will have an open-air concept, complete with circulating champagne and servers in black tie attire.

"In Monte Carlo they have fancy casinos so why not in Manhattan,” Baker told the New York Post. "Why should Manhattan have another slobby casino...We need spectacular."

Baker added that the casino will attract the "affluent global tourist." He's been working with "Broadway theaters, retailers and [elected officials]" to get the deal done.

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Who Would Fund the Saks Project?

According to the Post, at least five billionaires are in contention to fund the casino, which is yet to be named.

Those include Mets owner Steve Cohen, agribusinessman Stefan Soloviev, Gristedes CEO John Catsimatidis, and Hudson Yards developer Stephen Ross, according to the Post.

Nabbing the deal is likely to make a rich man even richer, as the posh Fifth Avenue area sees plenty of monied foot traffic (Fifth Avenue is where many posh hotels and retailers are parked, including Trump Tower, the St. Regis Hotel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Hublot).  

Some say the casino could be here soon rather than later, with Baker putting the development time at just around one year.