A massive $650 million dollar Caesars Virginia is now being built in Danville, Virginia, but is not expected to open until the second half of 2024. A temporary casino has already opened in Bristol, Virginia, in a former Belk’s location in a shopping mall, and a temporary one is being planned for Norfolk, Virginia to open in the middle of 2023, where another casino has been approved for construction. That temporary casino is going to be located in what is a large parking lot for its AAA minor league baseball stadium.
It looks like a temporary casino is now being planned for Danville too. On Tuesday, November 1, 2022 the Caesars Entertainment Corporation held an earnings conference call for investors and financial analysts. On this call, the company’s President and COO, Anthony Carano, talked about coming development plans in the works across the country and said the following, “We also expect to open our expanded casino offering in Pompano in December as well. We expect to open temporary casinos in both Danville, Virginia and Columbus, Nebraska by midyear ’23. Our expansion at Harrah’s Hoosier Park is underway and should open by mid-’23. And lastly, our construction on our new hotel tower and additional amenities at our New Orleans property is progressing well with the new sports book and poker room recently opened.”
Later in the call, Tom Reeg, Caesars Entertainment CEO, said, “Regional is obviously quite strong as well. It had a little bit of a margin improvement there. Strongest third quarter that we’ve ever had in regionals. And then we’ve got — as Anthony touched on, we’ve got Lake Charles coming. We’ve got temporary casinos in Columbus, Nebraska, Danville, Virginia that will hit next year.”
I sent an email this morning to the corporate Caesars Investors Relations people to see if I could find out where the location could be for a temporary casino and did not get an answer to that specific question. The person answering probably didn’t know. Maybe those in charge do not have that figured out yet or must keep that a secret for now. The Norfolk temporary casino plans changed location once. However, with the Bristol temporary casino open and this coming temporary Norfolk casino in the works, it makes sense for Caesars to get something going sooner than later.
The temporary Bristol has been a huge revenue success already, beyond expecations, and according to the agreement Caesars Virginia signed with the City of Danville it will have to make a payment to the city in September, 2023 of at least $5 million, and for every year thereafter, and possibly more, depending on the size of its gambling revenue.
It will be interesting to see how more details of this unfold.
The temporary Bristol location is about 30,000 square feet in size, which is the size of a warehouse. The planned size of the Caesars Virginia conference center is 40,000 square feet alone, so any temporary site will just be a taste of what is to come when the final casino opens.
It should be noted that Caesars Virginia has also announced job openings for security and floor managers.
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