It’s no secret that the gambling world is always evolving. If it didn’t, then it’s likely that people would get bored of the same old, same old. While it’s true that the online scene is progressing, so too is the land-based casino industry. It’s a very dynamic and lucrative space, featuring many advances in technology.
Many land-based casinos are evolving into integrated resorts today, for example. Rather than operate as a standalone casino, they include other options like hotels. We’ll get into that more in due course, as this guide will look at casino resort development.
Establishments of this nature tend to include restaurants, entertainment, convention centres etc. This sees them combine a variety of options for visitors to experience. As a result, they hold more appeal than a simple casino by itself.
The idea behind these resorts is that they bring people in for one thing to begin with. While there, they may end up stepping foot in the casino for a wager or two. It’s a successful strategy for casino owners, as many people enjoy the luxury resorts. With that being the case, we’ll have a look at some casino resort developments here. This includes impressions of their general design, what they aim to provide, their amenities, and so on.
Plans Revealed for Isle of Man Casino Complex
Anyone keeping up with developments in the casino world will have heard of the Isle of Man project. Announced back in August of 2022, plans came to light on a new casino complex launch. Altostratus Limited put forward the proposals, set to occupy a space in the capital of Douglas. The complex would be three-storeys tall, and have various features included. A car park would be present, as would offices and an entertainment centre. The firm noted that it had agreed to buy the land if it received planning permission.
Speaking of the plans, John Bell from ADG Architects noted that the hotel and casino would be the main tenant. ADG is the company responsible for the design of the complex. As of this writing, no further insight into the casino resort has arrived. The idea with it is to “help link the growing leisure offering” on the North Quay. That area already features shopping and business districts, which are well-established. As it stands at the moment, the one-acre site at Middlemarch is a temporary car park. That could all change if Altostratus gets it way, though.
If it gets the permission it has requested, a new 250-space car park will occupy the space. Alongside it, the three-storey leisure and entertainment complex will sit. It would take the name of the Palace Hotel & Casino. At the moment, there is a casino with that name on the Douglas Promenade, it would move to the new complex, according to CEO, Brett Martin. It would occupy two of the building’s three floors. At the same time, it would incorporate a sports bar for visitors to enjoy. Conference rooms and events areas would also be present in the setup. This, Martin said, would be relevant as “a modern casino” has all that “stuff” included.
The hotel part of the resort would actually take over the whole building currently on the promenade. “Douglas really as a town has not seen any major commercial developments for quite some time”, said Martin. He spoke of the complex being the biggest of such to occur for several decades. Not only that, but he highlighted the proposed area as one that needs development. Whether it comes to light or not remains as something to wait upon.
Resort Development Set to Cool Off?
There may be talk of a new development on the Isle of Man, but what about overseas? Las Vegas is, of course, one of the biggest locations for casino resorts. As it happens, two new casinos will open in the autumn period of 2023 in Vegas. Yet these could be the last ones seen for a while. A Wall Street analyst highlights that resort development will cool off instead. With the rising cost of construction and higher borrowing costs, it’s understandable.
In a note to investors in March, CBRE’s John DeCree issued a warning. He noted the opening of the Fontainebleau Las Vegas and Durango Casino & Resort. Yet he said that after these open their doors, they could be the last launches for the moment. Even so, more than 60 projects are actually in the pipeline. That’s according to the Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority Construction Bulletin. Several of the plans are at key sites on the Vegas Strip. A major rebranding of the Mirage by Hard Rock is also included there.
Construction has already come to a halt on one casino resort, though. The Dream Las Vegas boutique hotel-casino is suffering from lack of financing. Its projected cost is at least $550 million. The lack of money is for $25 million to $30 million, which the owners owe for work done so far. Construction will continue once financing is complete.
It’s not the only one to suffer a halt in its construction, either. Plans for a 43-storey, 2-400-room resort on the Strip for $270 million are in limbo. Texas billionaire Tilman Fertitta is the man responsible for this casino resort. A spokesman for his company said that no plan has come to light on when it intends to continue. Yet it has cited rising construction costs and an inflationary environment.
Yet even so, the Fontainebleau and Durango are still going ahead. Plus, the MSG Sphere arena is set to open in September behind the Venetian. The first of those casinos is adding around 3,644 rooms in its 67-storey building.
Back in 2021, another project for The Strip was also revealed. The plans said that a giant moon was to land in Vegas. Renderings released of the project showed the huge replica of the Moon next to the Wynn Casino building. Of course, it would have the name of the Moon Casino Resort. That project would have 4,000 hotel rooms, a lagoon, and its own ‘lunar colony’ built into it. The Canadian entrepreneurs behind it noted it as costing around £3.6 billion to construct. The Moon-shaped building would have a height of 224 metres. That would make it the joint-second-tallest building in Vegas.
There is likely no other location that does thematic casinos like the Vegas Strip. If construction did start on the Moon-shaped resort, it would also include a ‘crater cafe’ and a spa as well. Other attractions include an event centre, a theatre, a piano bar, boutiques, several lounges, and more. Plans even highlight a nightclub as being part of the venue and a glass-bottomed walkway. It’s not a new design though, believe it or not. Many concepts for the Moon Casino, such as the piano bar, were actually thought up in 2000.
In 2021, the casino was not in production on The Strip. The entrepreneurs behind it aimed to work with global corporations which already had funding. As a result, they could develop it in full. This would see Moon World Resorts licence their design in four locations. Not only would Vegas be one of them, but so too would Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Another render of the resort shows it based in Dubai on the site of the Burj Khalifa. Each resort built could bring in £1.3 billion every year once opened up.
No Slowdown in Virginia
When people think of gambling in the USA, the state of Virginia isn’t usually at the forefront of the mind. Yet Caesars could be aiming to change that. The company already has a thriving empire operating, having venues in Vegas and Macau. Even so, in 2021, it announced plans to expand into Virginia within the proceeding two years. This saw it unveil designs for a $500 million casino resort in Danville. Construction began on that in the months following its announcement. Caesars Virginia is now scheduled to open its doors in 2024. Anyone interested can see a live camera feed of construction taking place on the site.
Plans for the property include a 500-room hotel alongside the world-class casino floor. There, Caesars aims to incorporate 1,300 slot machines, 85 live table games, 24 electronic table games, and more. There is even space for a Caesars sportsbook and a WSOP poker room. As well as the casino, a full-service spa, pool, and high-quality bars and restaurants will be present. A 2,500-seat state-of-the-art live theatre is also planned. Meeting and convention space will be available inside, too.
It seems as though today’s casino resort developments try to cram as much into them as possible. Of course, the idea with this is to appeal to as many people as they can. A building providing a casino by itself will only attract casino gamers. Yet a resort including various features will appeal to many more. If someone visits a resort for a concert or theatre production, they may enter the casino, too. It can serve as a way for them to pass the time while the event begins. This is exactly what the casino operators are banking on as well.
Attaching a hotel to the resort makes it possible for those travelling from farther away to stay overnight. Or they could stay for even longer. As a result, there is more chance for them to enter the casino several times over. This has been the mindset for casino operators and owners for some time now.
The Impact on Economies and Communities
There is little doubt that there are certain positive aspects to the opening of new casino resorts. First of all, these venues need members of staff to keep them running. This doesn’t only relate to dealers at the tables and cash desk employees. Casinos need bar staff, security, managers, technical assistants, and so on. Most of the jobs in casino resorts are quite low-skilled positions. Yet tips do help with swinging the balance to a higher-than-average salary. Casino jobs have grown to become a magnificent “welfare to work” example.
Per-capita income tends to increase in areas where casinos have opened. Casino counties have seen their per-capita income grow almost 5% faster than those without such. As a result, not only do casinos help grow local economies, but provide gain to residents.
The likelihood is that the city that a casino bases itself out of will gain more in tax from the venue, too. That makes the city a lot wealthier. This does depend upon the country that the casinos are operating in, of course. Different tax rules will determine this factor. Should a casino open in a countryside area with a lack of businesses, then that could change. The casino may end up bringing more businesses alongside it. Restaurants, petrol stations, hotels, and so on, could set up shop. You only need to look at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore as an example. In 2022, that venue announced a $1 billion reinvestment to transform the experience it provides. Yet even in 2010 when it opened, the casino was boosting the Singaporean economy. Before it arrived, the area was very much a desolate zone.
Of course, there are negative impacts of these resort developments, too. There is an increase in consumption of public services, like road maintenance and sewers. Increased crime prevention costs are also present in casino neighbourhoods. The industry has often suffered accusations of inflating the potential growth of having a casino in a city. It has also been noted that the industry tends to downplay the negative impacts. Instead, it focuses on specialised factors of the resorts and an unfair view of the localised economic positives is thrust forward.
Major socioeconomic costs have been attributed to casino resorts. Not only that, but some have suggested they reduce the quality of life in some areas. Others have noted the potential for an increase in gambling addiction. Yet in the end, it’s about trying to balance what is on offer. With everything, there will always be positives and negatives. Casinos can provide a lot of good perks. Not only do they offer jobs, but entertainment in various forms. They can bring more people in – gambling tourism is a big thing right now. Doubtless, there are plans for more casinos to open in the future. Many of these will likely be resort-style options as well. Owners can incorporate much more into these venues, as noted.