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Pacific Park Bought by Private Equity Firm


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By Jorge Casuso

March 14, 2024 -- Pacific Park -- the iconic amusement park on the Santa Monica Pier -- has been bought by the New York City-based private equity firm SC Holdings for an undisclosed amount.

The sale was announced Thursday morning by Santa Monica Amusements LLC (SMA), the operating group for the 2-acre park, a major Southern California destination that draws 10 million visitors a year.

"Over the next five years, SC will make $10 million in capital investments in Pacific Park’s food and entertainment programs," Pacific Park officials said in a statement.

The investment will support "park operations and keeping (the park) a fun and welcoming destination for tourists, families, and the community," the statement said.

Pacific Park Vice President and General Manager Jeff Klocke called the purchase and investment by SC Holdings "a milestone moment."

"The Pier is a treasured part of Santa Monica, and a place where both tourists and Angelenos come for fun and relaxation," Klocke said. "SC’s investment and resources will help us expand what makes Pacific Park great today and write its next exciting chapter."

Klocke and his long-tenured management team -- which "has 300 years combined experience managing the Park’s operations" -- will continue to lead the day-to-day operations, park officials said.

SC Holdings, led by Managing Partners Jason Stein and Daniel Haimovic, "brings substantial capital and operational capabilities to Pacific Park," officials said.

Founded in 2019, SC has invested in The SpringHill Company, an entertainment studio co-owned by LeBron James; the merger of Major League Pickleball and the Professional Pickleball Association and celebrated chef James Kent’s Saga Hospitality Group.

"We’re honored to support the Park’s growth through investments into its programs and operations,” SC Partner Adrian Williams said in a statement.

“The Pier and Park are such iconic parts of Southern California’s coastline, and we want to make sure they stay a welcoming place where visitors and locals can come have fun and relax,” Williams said.

Lars Liebst, who served for 24 years as CEO of the Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen -- the world's second-oldest amusement park -- will serve on SC’s Pacific Park Advisory Board

He will be joined by David Swinghamer, the former CEO of Shake Shack, "who brings his successful and highly regarded consumer, food, and beverage experience to the board," park officials said.

City Manager David White said the park's purchase and planned improvements "reinforce the confidence we are seeing in Santa Monica’s future.

"We’re seeing more than a billion dollars in investment in local hotels, increased residential and retail projects and new shopping, dining and entertainment coming online throughout our city," White said in a statement Thursday.

"Santa Monica continues to be a destination for travelers and locals alike and remains a thriving place to do business. I look forward to continued progress ahead for our city and the beloved, iconic Santa Monica Pier."

Pacific Park is the only pier amusement park on the West Coast and home to the world’s first solar-powered Ferris wheel. It is also the LA area’s only admission-free amusement park.

In the coming months, SC and Pacific Park will make additional announcements about growth and developments on the Pier, including new food and entertainment amenities, park officials said.

For more information on Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier, visit

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