Issue 238
April 4 - April 10, 2005
Volume 5
page 1

This Issue

Gaming News

Casino City's April Sweepstakes

Hotel casino not to be

Canterbury Park's Racino Proposal Passes House Committee, Receives First Senate Hearing

Caesars Completes Sale of Its Interests in South African Casino Resort

Stanley Ho to open floating casino?

Show Time Damon Wayans performs at the Cache Creek Casino Resort, Brooks, California..

Column Tragedy Strikes
by Barney Vinson.

Check out our entertainment highlights & upcoming tournaments

See the lucky winners


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Harrah's hotel project to start again in April
As reported by the The Paducah Sun, Ky.

METROPOLIS, Illinois - Harrah's Entertainment says construction of a $62 million hotel and entertainment center should resume within a month and be finished by next spring, now that the project has been approved by the Illinois Gaming Board.

The five-member board met Wednesday in Chicago and voted unanimously for the seven-story, 258-room development to complement Harrah's Metropolis Casino. The hotel will be accompanied by a 12,000-square-foot multipurpose center with 1,200 concert seats and up to 800 banquet-style seats. A 75-seat restaurant and bar area will also be part of the complex.

"We are extremely pleased that the gaming board chose to take swift action to approve our project," said Mike Crider, casino senior vice president and general manager.

Approval had had been delayed since September by the lack of a board quorum. Harrah's stopped construction in January with much of the foundation work completed.

Gov. Rod Blagojevich appointed three new board members two weeks ago. The new board approved the project with few questions and little discussion, said Metropolis Mayor Beth Clanahan. She and Crider spoke at the meeting about the importance of the hotel project. It was their third gaming board presentation since Harrah's announced the project. They also testified last month before the Illinois House Gaming Committee on the importance of resuming the work.

"The city bought $1.3 million in land to develop an RV park and marina," she said. "This is certainly exciting for that development because hopefully it and the hotel complex will complement each other."

Clanahan also told the new board the city is investing a little more than $4 million for a new electric substation to serve the area.

The hotel is expected to increase the number of annual gaming tourists from 1.3 million to 1.6 million and generate $1.5 million more annually in tax revenue for Metropolis and $11.7 million for Illinois. About 250 construction workers will be needed, followed by 100 hotel staffers.

Harrah's is already one of the region's largest employers with a payroll of 930. Its most recent capital expansion was the opening of a $65 million entertainment pavilion and floating casino in 2001.

Morsey Inc. of Calvert City, Ky., is ready to resume hotel foundation work as soon as a new general contractor is named, marketing director Brian Sayner said. Harrah's and former lead contractor Smoot Construction of Indianapolis parted ways in January amid disagreement over billing issues.

"It's been an excellent project for us because it's enabled us to keep people working," Sayner said. "We've always felt the hotel will be a boon to the economy. In the not-too-distant future, that's going to be a swinging place."


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