Landry's, Inc.

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Landry's, Inc.
Private
IndustryRestaurants
Entertainment
Hospitality industry
Founded1980; 39 years ago (1980) in Katy, Houston, Texas, U.S.
HeadquartersHouston, Texas, U.S.
Key people
Tilman Fertitta
(President & CEO)
ProductsCasual dining, Fine dining, Casino games, Entertainment destinations, Resorts
OwnerTilman Fertitta
Websitewww.landrysinc.com
Landry's Hangar – Hobby Airport, Houston

Landry's, Inc., is an American, privately owned, multi-brand dining, hospitality, entertainment and gaming corporation. Headquartered in Houston, Texas, Landry's, Inc. owns and operates more than 600 restaurant, hotels, casinos and entertainment destinations in 35 states and the District of Columbia. The company also owns and operates numerous international locations.

History[edit]

Landry's, Inc., is owned entirely by President & CEO Tilman Fertitta, an original partner in the company's first Landry's Seafood, which opened in the Houston suburb of Katy, Texas, in 1980. A year later, Fertitta helped open Willie G's, a seafood restaurant in Houston. In 1986, Fertitta gained controlling interests in both restaurants. He became CEO and took the company public in 1993, with a valuation of $30 million.[1]


Under the leadership of Fertitta, the company expanded. In 2010, already being the majority shareholder, Fertitta acquired all outstanding shares of company stock, gaining sole control and ownership.[2] By 2011, the company's value had risen to more than $1.7 billion.[3]

Acquisitions and growth[edit]

1990s[edit]

Throughout the 1990s, Landry's, Inc., expanded, developing and acquiring restaurant, entertainment, hospitality, and gaming businesses. In 1994, Landry's, Inc., acquired Joe's Crab Shack.[4] In 2006, Landry's, Inc. sold Joe's Crab Shack, which had grown to more than 120 locations, to J.H. Whitney & Company.[5] During the decade, the company acquired a number of other restaurants, including The Crab House and Cadillac Bar. Landry's Seafood continued to expand.[6]

Landry's, Inc., expanded its hospitality and entertainment divisions in 1996, acquiring The San Luis Resort, Spa & Conference Center, a 32-acre beachfront resort on Galveston Island's historic Seawall Boulevard and built on top of the former Fort Crockett.[7] In 2004, Landry's, Inc. partnered with the City of Galveston to open a 140,000 square foot convention center, the Galveston Island Convention Center at the San Luis Resort. In 2003, the company acquired the adjacent Holiday Inn Resort Galveston – On the Beach. In 2004, the adjacent Hilton Galveston Island Resort was acquired. In total, the San Luis Resort includes 700 guest rooms, 10 restaurants, and 200,000 square feet of event space.[8]

The company's hospitality division also includes The Westin Houston Downtown in Downtown Houston[9] and the Boardwalk Inn on the Kemah Boardwalk.[10] In 1998, the company developed the 35-acre Kemah Boardwalk, with a hotel; a marina; more than 10 restaurants; and dozens of midway games, amusement rides, and attractions.[3]

2000s[edit]

After 2000, Landry's, Inc., continued to grow. In 2000, the company acquired Rainforest Cafe, a collection of jungle-inspired restaurants and retail villages.[11] In 2002, the company acquired three national restaurants, including Saltgrass Steak House;[12] Chart House;[13] and Muer Restaurants,[14] a series of seafood restaurants.

In 2003, the company opened the Downtown Aquarium, a 20-acre entertainment complex in Houston with an aquarium; a restaurant built around a 150,000-gallon, floor-to-ceiling centerpiece aquarium; a bar; banquet facilities; amusement rides; and midway games. A train carries guests into a tunnel running through a 250,000-gallon shark tank. Other Aquarium restaurants have since opened in Denver; Nashville; and on the Kemah Boardwalk in Texas.[15]

In 2005, the company acquired Golden Nugget Hotel & Casinos, with locations in Las Vegas and Laughlin, Nevada.[16] Landry's, Inc., has since opened three additional locations in Atlantic City, New Jersey,[17] Biloxi, Mississippi[18] and Lake Charles, Louisiana.[19]

2010s[edit]

In 2010, Landry's, Inc., acquired three new restaurants. Bubba Gump Shrimp Company, a collection of seafood restaurants, is themed on the hit movie Forrest Gump.[20][21] The company also acquired Claim Jumper, a national chain of family restaurants.[22] The Oceanaire, a national collection of seafood restaurants, is renowned for flying in fresh fish daily.[23]

In 2011, Landry's bought two more restaurants – McCormick & Schmick's Seafood & Steaks[24] and Morton's The Steakhouse.[25] In 2012, the company expanded its entertainment division, with the opening of the Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier.[26]

In 2013, Landry's acquired Mastro's restaurants.[27] The company has developed and acquired a collection of restaurants called Landry's Signature Group, which include Vic & Anthony's; Grotto; Brenner's Steakhouse; Brenner's on the Bayou; La Griglia; and Willie G's Seafood & Steaks.[28] In 2016, Landry's acquired the BR Guest restaurant brand.[29]

In August 2017, Landry's re-acquired Joe's Crab Shack restaurants from Ignite Restaurant Group, who had filed for bankruptcy protection on June 6, 2017.[30][31][32] Landry's had sold Joe's to Ignite's predecessor in 2006.[33] The Ignite group also owned Brick House Tavern + Tap restaurants. These were also sold to Landry's Inc.

Properties and subsidiaries[edit]

Properties[edit]

The Crawford Boxes
Landry's, Inc. operates the Tower of the Americas in San Antonio.

Since the 1990s, Landry's has expanded to real estate holdings beyond dining and hospitality.

  • The Post Oak (under construction): Fertitta broke grounds on a mixed-use skyscraper in Houston that will go alongside the company's headquarters. The building will include hotel rooms, residential rooms, and office buildings.
  • Post Oak Motor Cars: The company owns and operates Post Oak Motor Cars, Ltd., the largest factory-authorized Rolls Royce Motor Cars and Bentley Motors dealership on the Gulf Coast.[34]
  • Landry's Crawford Boxes: Landry's, Inc., owns the naming rights to the left field bleachers at Minute Maid Park, the home of Major League Baseball's Houston Astros. The Landry's Crawford Boxes are so named because they run parallel to Downtown Houston's Crawford Street. Any fan catching a home run receives a gift card to Landry's, Inc., restaurants.[35]
  • Tower of the Americas (originally built for HemisFair '68): Landry's, Inc., operates Tower of the Americas, a 750-foot San Antonio, Texas, landmark. At the top of the tower, guests can dine at Chart House Restaurant. Other attractions include summer concert series; a 4D Texas ride;[36] and an observation level.[37]

Aquariums[edit]

Landry's, Inc. owns aquariums in Houston, Denver, Nashville, and Kemah, Texas. All aquariums contain restaurants branded in Landry's Aquarium subsidiary.

  • Downtown Aquarium, Houston: a public aquarium and restaurant located in Houston, Texas, United States that was developed from two Houston landmarks: Fire Station No. 1 and the Central Waterworks Building. The aquarium is located on a 6-acre (2.4 ha) site at 410 Bagby St. in downtown Houston. It houses over 200 species of aquatic animals in 500,000 US gallons (1,900,000 l) of aquariums. The complex includes two restaurants, a bar, and banquet facilities. The Downtown Aquarium in Houston is owned and operated by Landry's, Inc. and accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).
  • Downtown Aquarium, Denver: a public aquarium and restaurant located in Denver, Colorado at the intersection of I-25 and 23rd Ave. The 107,000 square feet (9,900 m2) main building sits on a 17-acre (6.9 ha) site adjacent to the South Platte River. Its freshwater and marine aquaria total approximately 1,000,000 US gallons (3,785,000 l), and exhibit a variety of fish and other animals. The Downtown Aquarium in Denver is owned and operated by Landry's Restaurants, Inc.,[38] and is the largest aquarium between Chicago and California.[39] It is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).
  • Nashville: Landry's operates a 200,000 gallon Aquarium in Nashville that contains a variety of fish, sharks, and stingrays. The aquarium operated the Aquarium branded restaurants.
  • Kemah, Texas: Inside the Kemah Boardwalk (also owned by Landry's, Inc.), the company operates an aquarium and restaurant.

Pier[edit]

Boardwalk[edit]

Casinos[edit]

Cruise[edit]

  • Boardwalk FantaSea: A Houston area cruise line offering public and private cruise lines that travel through the Galveston Bay and the Gulf of Mexico.

Hospitality[edit]

  • Blue Water Inn
  • Boardwalk Inn
  • Hilton Galveston Island Resort
  • Holiday Inn Resort Galveston – On the Beach
  • The Westin Houston Downtown
  • The Villas at San Luis Resort
  • The Post Oak at Uptown Houston

Dining[edit]

In addition to all properties, Landry's started out operating restaurant and has acquired many restaurant brands since:

Landry's Seafood[edit]

Landry's Seafood in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana

Landry's Seafood is a chain of American casual seafood restaurants owned by Landry's, Inc.[58][59][60] It currently operates in 20 locations in eight U.S. states, with many situated near tourist landmarks and attractions.[61] The first Landry's Seafood opened in 1947 in Lafayette in a local family's kitchen.[62] In 1980 Tilman Fertitta, chairman, CEO and sole owner of Landry's, Inc., opened a Landry's Seafood location in the Houston suburb of Katy, Texas.[63][64] He later opened more locations,[58] eventually assuming controlling interests of the company.

Controversies[edit]

White Tiger Exhibit in Downtown Aquarium, Houston[edit]

On September 19, 2016, a consortium of parties, including the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) sent Landry's a notice of an intended lawsuit against it under the Endangered Species Act.[65] The lawsuit notice concerned the alleged treatment and habitat conditions of four white tigers exhibited at the Downtown Aquarium, Houston. The ALDF complained that the four tigers, which are federally protected by the Endangered Species Act, “are kept in deplorable conditions” at the Aquarium. According to a press release provided by the ALDF:[65]

"For the last 12 years, Landry’s has deprived these four tigers .... of any access to sunlight, fresh air, or natural surfaces. These species-inappropriate living conditions violate the ESA .... At no point do the tigers have the opportunity to run, jump, or engage in the full range of their natural behaviors.

'The dungeon-like conditions that the tigers are forced to endure at Houston’s Downtown Aquarium harm their physical health and psychological wellbeing and deny them much that is natural and important to a tiger,' says renowned big cat veterinarian Dr. Jennifer Conrad. 'It is cruel to confine complex, roaming carnivores such as tigers to a tiny, dark, artificial, unenriched enclosure where they never see any daylight, much less bask in sunshine, and are at risk for serious long term, debilitating injuries from being forced to live on slippery, unyielding concrete their entire lives.'

…. By forcing these tigers to live in what amounts to a concrete dungeon, Landry’s has profited financially, but caused the tigers serious mental and physical harm .... Retiring the tigers to a sanctuary will guarantee that the tigers may spend the rest of their lives in the species-appropriate conditions that they need and deserve.”

Before the expiration of the 60-day notice period, Landry's sued the ALDF and its co-parties to the original lawsuit notice for defamation, business disparagement, tortious interference with prospective business relations, and abuse of process.[65] In response, the ALDF filed a motion for the dismissal of the defamation lawsuit, citing Texas’ Anti-SLAPP law, which allows judges to dismiss meritless lawsuits filed against those who speak out about a “matter of public concern.”[66]

On February 22, 2017, Harris County District Judge Steven Kirkland dismissed the defamation lawsuit filed by Landry's and further ordered Landry's to pay $450,000 in penalties and an additional $174,000 in legal fees to deter the company from filing such lawsuits in the future.[66] The decision to dismiss the defamation lawsuit by Landry's was affirmed on October 18, 2018 by the Fourteenth Court of Appeals of Texas, although the penalties sanctioned on Landry's were reduced.[65]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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  66. ^ a b "AZA Wins Dismissal of Landry's Defamation Suit over Houston Aquarium Tigers - AZA Law". Retrieved 2019-02-15.

External links[edit]