The Sam's Club that operated adjacent to Cortana Mall before its closure in just over a year ago has been sold for $5.6 million to a Mardi Gras bead distributor.

The vacant Sam’s Club at Cortana Mall has been sold for $5.6 million to a Baton Rouge Mardi Gras bead distributor.

Bead Sale LLC, represented by Brandon Maddox, bought the property in a sale that was filed Thursday with the East Baton Rouge Clerk of Court’s office. The seller was Sam’s Real Estate Business Trust.

The 136,085-square-foot store at 9598 Cortana Place has been vacant since January 2018, when Sam’s abruptly shut down 63 stores. Although there were indications that some of the closed stores would be turned into Sam's distribution centers to fulfill online orders, a company spokeswoman said last year that wouldn’t happen in Baton Rouge. The Cortana Sam's Club opened in January 2012, replacing a store on Airline Highway.

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Bead Sale, which is headed by Maddox, imports and sells parade throws for Mardi Gras, St. Patrick’s Day and other events at wholesale prices. It operates the website The company has been in business since 2001 and currently operates out of a 119,000-square-foot warehouse at Airline Highway and Choctaw Drive. 

The sale documents set forth a number of restrictions for the former Sam’s store. According to the covenants which are in place for 50 years, the building can’t be used as a grocery store, pharmacy, discount department store, a bar, an adult business, a marijuana distribution facility or a grocery distribution facility. The covenants do not apply for operation of a warehouse or fulfillment center for a bead, party or Mardi Gras supply retailer, which appears to clear the way for Bead Sale to relocate its operations.

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