Work continues at Isle of Capri’s $135 million dollar casino development in Southeast Missouri. Thanks to favorable weather during much of the construction, the property will be opening more than a month ahead of schedule.
After being awarded the state’s 13th casino license in December of 2010, the company moved quickly to develop the property. The groundbreaking ceremony was held March 31st, 2011, and with a projected opening date of November 1st, 2012, development of the project will have taken only nineteen months. Hiring of employees has been underway for months, and continues now as the opening date is just over a month away.
The property is expected to feature 1000 slot machines, 28 table games, and 3 restaurants. Isle of Capri operates casinos in Mississippi, Louisiana, Iowa, Colorado, and Missouri, as well as a race track in Pompano Beach, Florida. Current projects under development include the Cape Girardeau casino and the Lady Luck Casino Nemacolin in Farmington, Pennsylvania.
While Isle of Capri has traditionally targeted the low-end market of casino gamblers, some of their properties have begun to stretch their marketing efforts to appeal to more middle and upper-income patrons as well. The company’s largest property, in Lake Charles, Louisiana has been steadily improving their games and marketing offers to compete against Pinnacle Entertainment’s dominant L’Auberge resort in that area. The company is currently spending $15 million on refurbishing the main hotel tower in Lake Charles. Results so far look promising, as player counts seem to be higher and high-end action is noticeably increased.
It will be interesting to watch as the company develops these new properties, to see on which market segment they focus their efforts going forward.