Michael Gaughan, Sr. has operated casinos in Las Vegas since 1965, when he first became an owner of the El Cortez Hotel. He founded Coast Casinos in 1979 with the opening of Barbary Coast Hotel and Casino. Mr. Gaughan joined the Boyd Gaming executive team when Coast Casinos became a wholly owned subsidiary of the company in July 2004. In 2006 Michael Gaughan, Sr. purchased the South Coast property from Boyd Gaming, renaming it the South Point Hotel, Casino, and Spa. When Jackie Gaughan and his son, Michael, built the Barbary Coast in the 1970s, they divided Las Vegas in half. Michael was given five years to buy out his father's interest in the hotel, but under the condition that Michael was to keep his business operations south of Sahara Avenue while Jackie was to continue downtown. It only took Michael six months to buy out his fathers interest in the Barbary Coast. Even with the Sahara Avenue boundary line, father and son didn't worry about competing against each other because according to Jackie, they both cater to different clientele.