In a definitive move to expand Louisiana’s gaming terrain, Baton Rouge has announced the arrival of its first-ever land-based casino: The Queen Baton Rouge. Expected to make its grand entrance this August, the venture is a tangible symbol of the evolving casino landscape in Louisiana.
For years, riverboat casinos have floated majestically along the Mississippi, forming the backbone of Louisiana’s gaming scene. However, the city of Baton Rouge is shifting the traditional game, stepping onshore with its land-based casino.
The Transformation of the Hollywood Casino
The Queen Baton Rouge, set to open on August 24, is the offspring of a substantial $85m expansion on the former Hollywood Casino. The development process, which kicked off in August 2021, has been beset by a series of challenges, from escalating construction costs to the unruly rise of the Mississippi River. The location, perilously close to the levee, led to some nervous glances and delayed openings.
However, these hiccups haven’t deterred the parent company, The Queen Casino & Entertainment. They’re prepared to reveal a stunning, transformed gaming destination. The expansion will see the site grow from its original 62,000 square feet to a sprawling space of over 100,000 square feet, complete with 750+ slot machines and 18 table games moved from the riverboat onto land.
Amenities Beyond Gaming
The casino is not just about the gaming experience but also about creating a holistic entertainment environment. The casino will proudly feature a DraftKings sportsbook, providing wagering opportunities for sports enthusiasts.
But there’s more. Fancy a drag on a cigar while pondering your next blackjack move? They’ve got you covered with Lit, a smoking patio/bar featuring an additional 100 slot machines. And when hunger strikes, five unique eateries await, including Shaquille O’Neal’s Big Chicken and the 3 Woks Noodle Bar.
Boosting Local Employment and Entertainment
The arrival of the casino is expected to generate around 100 new jobs, contributing to Baton Rouge’s local economy. The project has already hired 20 people following two recent job fairs.
The casino’s current riverboat, the Hollywood Casino, is slated to be sold to Viking River Cruises. This will add to the dock’s existing charm, catering to Mississippi River journeys that ferry about 600 passengers to downtown Baton Rouge.
A Significant Step for Baton Rouge’s Gaming Industry
The opening of The Queen Baton Rouge signifies a significant shift in Baton Rouge’s gaming industry. As Terry Downey, President and CEO of The Queen Casino & Entertainment, stated, the casino ushers in a new era, not just for the property, but for gaming and entertainment in the region.
This move is likely to shape Louisiana’s gaming and entertainment landscape, marking an evolutionary step in the city’s history. The Belle of Baton Rouge, another local riverboat casino, is also undergoing a $100m renovation, further cementing the cirty’s status as a burgeoning gaming hub.
Whether you’re a seasoned player or an interested spectator, Baton Rouge is dealing its cards right, and we can’t wait to see the new face of Louisiana’s gaming scene. As they say, the house always wins – this time, it’s Baton Rouge.
The Ripple Effect on the Gaming Industry
Indeed, the transition from riverboat to land-based casinos, though not exclusive to Baton Rouge, is rapidly becoming an emerging trend in the broader gaming industry. As we witness this shift, it’s clear that it has set the stage for the industry’s future, promising an exciting and innovative blend of gaming, entertainment, and diverse cuisine.
It’s an intriguing mix that’s expected to lure not only seasoned gamblers but also a younger, vibrant crowd seeking unique leisure experiences. With The Queen Baton Rouge leading the pack, it’s clear that the city is not just ready to embrace the change but is indeed pioneering this shift.