Eldorado Resorts Plans to Reopen Louisiana Casinos This Week

The US land-based casino industry is slowly coming back to life. Several states have begun allowing their casinos to resume operations. It’s great news for casino companies, many of which have lost an incredible amount of money due to this new pandemic. According to new reports, Eldorado Resorts plans to reopen three of its Louisiana casinos this week.Eldorado Resorts Logo

Casino fans are already getting excited. Of course, the casinos here won’t look quite the same as they did back in February. Today, we’re going to discuss which casinos will open, and what measures they will take to protect staff and patrons.

Let’s get into it!

Louisiana is Slowly Beginning to Open Back Up

There was a brief time when Louisiana appeared to have one of the biggest clusters of Covid-19 cases in the country. The state didn’t lock down before the Mardi Gras celebration, leading to a huge number of new cases. Since that time, Louisiana has been under lockdown.

All casinos in this state were shut down almost immediately after infections began appearing inside the L’Auberge Casino. Initially, it was unclear how long these gambling venues would be closed for. Governor Edwards made it clear that the state would remain closed down until infection rates became under control.

Casino companies with property in Louisiana began complaining about the current conditions. Everyone understands that reopening the casinos here is difficult. Unless something changed, however, many of these properties may be forced to permanently shut down.

Things are now starting to change. There are a little over 34,000 cases around the entire state. Rates of infection have dropped over the past month. Now, Louisiana is entering into phase two of reopening and some casinos are preparing to open their doors.

It’s an exciting moment for many people. Casino companies are working hard to ensure these casinos are opened up in the safest way possible. Eldorado Resorts has just announced it plans to open up three of the top casinos in the state. Here’s what this company has planned.

Eldorado Resorts Plans to Reopen Three Louisiana Casinos

Eldorado Resorts is one of the biggest and most successful casino companies in the country. At the moment, it’s also one of the worst-affected gambling companies due to the global pandemic. Eldorado owns and operates casinos in many states around the country.

That includes several in Louisiana. Eldorado Resorts has been one of the most proactive companies trying to allow casinos to start operating again. It has presented several different plans to state leaders.

Not long ago, the Louisiana Gaming Control Board gave this company the green light to open some of its gambling venues. The commission announced that casinos must limit occupancy to 25% of what it was a few months ago. Eldorado has now confirmed that it will open three of its major gaming venues inside the state.

Anthony Carano, president and CEO of Eldorado Resorts, commented on the new plans to the media this week.

“As we resume operations at our properties, the health and safety of our team members and guests is our No. 1 priority,” he said. “We have been working very hard over the last two months to prepare for the reopening of our casinos and we look forward to providing the outstanding service and hospitality experiences Eldorado is known for in a safe manner.”

Today, this company will reopen the Isle of Capri Lake Charles Casino, Belle of Baton Rouge Casino, and the Eldorado Shreveport. Many expect these venues to draw large crowds once their doors are opened. Hope is that revenue figures begin to increase for all of the casino operators here.

It’s an interesting time for Eldorado Resorts. This company continues to work on its massive deal with Caesars Entertainment.

Eldorado-Caesars Merger is Still Underway

It’s not entirely uncommon for major casino companies to merge. We’ve seen this happen on several occasions over the past few decades. No merger is as big as the one currently underway between Eldorado Resorts and Caesars Entertainment.

Back in June of 2019, these two companies announced they were merging. Eldorado paid an incredible $17 billion to acquire Caesars. Obviously, a deal of this magnitude takes a long time to complete.

Both of these companies need to gain approval from various state gaming commissions. Several states have already approved this deal. Unfortunately, the pandemic has significantly slowed down the progress of this deal.

That doesn’t mean things have completely stopped. In April, Eldorado announced it was selling two of its major casinos to help pay for the cost of this merger. That includes one of its Louisiana casinos.

Caesars Entertainment has also sold several major casinos to help move this deal along. Based on the way things are going, the deal will conclude before the end of 2020. We’re in an unprecedented time, however, and no one really knows how the land-based casino industry will fare over the next 12 months.

Are you excited to hear that Louisiana casinos are opening back up? Let us know in the comments section below.

Louisiana Gaming Control Board Approves Proposed Caesars-Eldorado Merger

Eldorado-CasinoOn Friday, the Louisiana Gaming Control Board officially approved the proposed merger between Caesars Entertainment Corp. and Eldorado Resorts. While the board gave the $17.3 billion deal the thumbs-up, the regulator also criticized Eldorado for lacking in its efforts to upgrade its Baton Rouge casino.

Members of Eldorado’s brass made an appearance in front of the Louisiana Gaming Control Board on Thursday with hopes of helping the merger’s chances of being approved. Getting approval in all states in which Eldorado and Caesars operate is a necessary step for both to go forward with the proposed deal. The lucrative pact was officially announced in June of 2019, and industry experts believe the merger will close sometime in the middle of this year.

Louisiana Board Grills Eldorado Executives

Ronnie Jones, the Chairman of the Louisiana Gaming Control Board, asked Eldorado CEO Tom Reeg whether he and his team “were up to the task to make sure that you spread attention to all of the properties in all states in which you operate.” Jones cited the fact that Eldorado’s Belle of Baton Rouge Casino and Hotel has struggled to meet its financial goals over the past few years and that the lack of renovations is to blame.

Jones also made a note of the fact that Reeg and the rest of Eldorado’s representatives in attendance for Thursday’s meeting did not even stay at the Belle property. Instead, they stayed at L’Auberge Casino Hotel, which is owned by competitor Gaming and Leisure Properties.

Eldorado has invested only $1.1 million since acquiring the Belle, with most of the money going toward refurbishing and upgrading slot machines and gambling equipment. However, Reeg and Eldorado formally pledged to invest quite a bit in the riverboat casino property in the years ahead.

Eldorado Pledges Millions to Louisiana Properties

Reeg said that he and his group “understand that asset in its current state is not acceptable to the state and is not acceptable to us either.” He added that the “situation will be different” the next time they appear before the board. Eldorado subsequently pledged to spend over $500 million in Louisiana over the next 4 years, with $325 million of that money going toward overhauling Harrah’s New Orleans. Harrah’s is operated by Caesars.

Another $110 million will be put toward moving the Isle of Capri Casino Lake Charles onto land. The same will be done to the Belle of Baton Rouge. That process will involve moving the riverboat into a nearby atrium that had previously housed a shopping mall.

More Regulatory Challenges Ahead

Shareholders for Eldorado and Caesars both approved the proposed merger in November of 2019. Louisiana was the second regulator to officially vote on the merger after Missouri voted in December, and there are 12 more states that need to do the same before the deal will close.

Reeg said last summer that he would expect the deal to close some time in the first quarter of 2020, but that is looking unlikely at this stage. At the time, Reeg said,

“We’re still targeting a first half of 2020 closing date. If I were to place a bet today, I’d be betting on a first quarter close versus a second quarter close. But we’re going through the regulatory and antitrust in real time.”

Shareholders from Eldorado and Caesars were both over 99 percent in favor of the deal. Eldorado’s stockholders additionally approved a measure to reincorporate Eldorado from Nevada to Delaware following the merger’s closing later this year. Eldorado is set to pay over $7 billion in cash with 77 million shares of stock in order to acquire 51 percent of the new company. Eldorado will also take on Caesars’ existing debts.

Once all regulatory hurdles are cleared, the new company will own 60 casinos with 51,000 hotel rooms, 71,000 slot machines and 3,650 table games across the United States.

Worker Still Missing Inside New Orleans Hard Rock Rubble

On Saturday night, a building under construction at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in New Orleans collapsed. More than 20 people were initially thought to be injured. Now, reports are surfacing that workers are still missing inside the New Orleans Hard Rock collapse.

New Orleans Hard Rock Collapse

It’s terrible news to hear about those injured or killed in this accident. Today, we’re going to talk about Louisiana’s laws on casino gambling. We’ll also look at how this accident happened and who it’s affected. Let’s get started!

Casino Gambling Laws in Louisiana

The state of Louisiana has had a love/hate relationship with the gambling industry over the years. The first legal gambling options became available here more than 200 years ago. Since that time, lawmakers have banned and relegalized various forms of gambling that can now be enjoyed here today.

Louisiana’s first real regulated gambling option was the state lottery that appeared in the 1860s. Unfortunately, it didn’t take long for lottery officials to fall into corruption and soon politicians here recognized that something needed to change. By the late 1800s, this lottery was officially banned.

After the lottery was outlawed, the only real form of gambling here was pari-mutuel wagering on horse races. New Orleans has kept its horse racing tradition alive. Today, there are a huge number of “racinos,” which offer horse racing odds and certain casino games.

There are also a huge number of land-based casinos and poker rooms spread around the state. The majority of casinos here are located on riverboats. Some can now be found on land, as well.

Unfortunately, Louisiana still has a tough stance on online gambling. Lawmakers here have made it clear that all forms of wagering over the internet are banned. The state has only shown an interest in targeting online gambling companies and many individuals choose to play through LA casino sites anyways.

New Orleans Hard Rock Collapse Kills Two, Injures Dozens

One of the most popular gambling venues in Louisiana is the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in New Orleans. This casino has gained a fantastic reputation amongst gamblers thanks to its massive range of gaming options and great amenities. This week, one of the buildings that were under construction in this hotel collapsed.

It was unclear at first how many were injured in the New Orleans Hard Rock collapse. Initial reports claimed that around 15 had been hurt. LaToya Cantrell, Mayor of New Orleans, was one of the first officials to confirm that two individuals had been killed.

“We can confirm we have lost two people, a third has not been found just yet so we don’t know. We have not been able to identify the three individuals,” she told the media. 

It’s now being confirmed that more than 20 people have been injured. One of the individuals killed has been identified, as well. You can check out the dramatic footage of this collapse below.

 

Officials on the scene are confirming that one worker is still missing inside the New Orleans Hard Rock collapse.

Search for Missing Worker Continues

It’s still not clear exactly how this building collapsed. We may not know for weeks exactly what happened. Right now, fire departments in New Orleans and the building’s construction firm are working to make the area safe for search crews.

Tim McConnell, Fire Chief of the city, is trying to stabilize the collapsed building. He’s considering utilizing a massive crane to prevent tumbling.

“We have someone we have not located and can’t get to where we think they might be,” McConnell said. “Our goal here is to continue making the scene safe so we can continue getting into this building deeper and deeper for rescue purposes.”

Citadel Builders LLC, the construction firm for this project, is flying out individuals from Europe to help crews remove debris and search for more victims. It’s been confirmed that one worker is still in the wreckage. Whether or not he’s alive is unknown.

The structure is still very unstable. We’ll need to wait for updates on the search over the next 24 hours. Stay tuned for more information!