Detroit Casinos Report Record-Breaking $1.454 Billion in Revenue for 2019

MGM Grand Detroit CasinoDetroit’s three casinos set a record for adjusted gross revenue last year, earning $1.454 billion in 2019. According to the state, that amount tops the record $1.444 billion set in 2018, or a $10 million increase in revenue. Those three casinos are MGM Grand Detroit, MotorCity Casino and the Greektown. It was record-breaking years for both MGM Grand Detroit and MotorCity Casino Hotel.

This record casino revenue is also good news for the state of Michigan and the city of Detroit. The state saw just over $117.8 million in gaming taxes in 2019. This number was $800,000 more than what they accrued the previous year. Detroit was paid $184.2 million in wagering taxes and development agreements, compared to $182.9 million in 2018.

Slices of the Billion-Dollar Pie

With nearly 43% market share in 2019, MGM Grand Detroit blazed the trail in the Motor City. The casino made $623.5 million in revenue, 0.7% more than its record the year prior, according to the Michigan Gaming Control Board.

MotorCity Casino Hotel took the second-largest portion at 34% market share. Its revenue was $493.6 million, which is about 0.8% higher than the record it had set in 2018. And while MotorCity was in second place, the property still experienced year-over-year revenue growth on its way to record turnover.

The rest was from Greektown, which had revenue of $337.2 million and covered about 23% of the market share. That was up 0.6% from the previous year but fell short of its $352.8 million record in 2011, when the three casinos achieved a then-record of $1.4 billion.

Each casino saw a year-over-year uptick in fourth quarter revenue in 2019. Greektown’s increased 3.4% to $87.1 million, MotorCity’s rose 2.9% to $123.4 million and MGM’s ticked up 0.2% to $157.2 million.

MGM Grand Detroit Opens ‘Moneyline’ as a Money Move

The MGM Grand opened their new sports lounge, Moneyline, last October to position themselves on the future of sports betting in the state.

They designed Moneyline Sports Lounge to look and feel like a sports book you would see in Las Vegas. They did this to bring the Vegas experience to Detroit, and while sports gaming isn’t an option right now, that may not be the case for much longer.

Michigan house representative Brandt Iden has been pushing for legislative changes in sports betting for years. His efforts will go a long way when Moneyline will be able to achieve its full potential, as a Sports Book taking wagers for gamblers legally.

This was another smart, forward-thinking move for the industry-leading MGM Grand, one that if coupled with the legalization of sports betting, will undoubtedly garner in an even higher increase of revenue for the year.

A Good Year on the Horizon, Possibly

Michigan approved sports betting last December, and online and mobile wagering are part of that package.

Industry observers are divided on exactly when the sports betting will be ready for public consumption in the state. Some of the more ambitious timelines indicate its availability in the spring, sometimes after March Madness. Some of the more realistic estimates indicate that it could likely take all of 2020 for Michigan to get the sports betting bill ready.

But if sports betting in the state becomes available sooner rather than later, then Michigan is expected to see over $19 million in annual revenue solely from sports wagering.

Michigan’s Islands Resort & Casino Approves $30 Million Renovation

Island-CasinoOn Thursday, the Hannahville Indian Community Tribal Council granted approval to pave the way for the Island Resort & Casino in Michigan to begin a sizable renovation. The property will spend $30 million to expand the resort property by adding 11 stories to the Palm Tower. The top floor of the property will feature a brand-new restaurant as well as an expansive meeting space.

The hotel will also get a 140-room expansion on top of the 300 rooms that already exist. Aa water park and a swimming pool will also be built adjacent to the hotel. The casino and hotel property has been in need of expansion for quite some time given how many people visit the resort on a yearly basis.

More Space in High Demand

Tony Mancilla, the general manager of Island Resort & Casino, told Marquette local TV stadion WLUC:

“We have a high demand. We sold out 95 percent of our rooms every day of the summer, and on the weekends, we have waiting lists anywhere up to 200 people, so we have a high demand for the rooms.”

The property attracts casino gamblers, convention attendees as well as golfers.

Quintus 3D, an architectural planning firm from Wisconsin, is set to provide designs and engineering proposals in the coming weeks. Quintus 3D has previously designed the property’s Drift Spa, retail space and hotel lobby. The company is known to work with several Indian tribes all over the United States.

Michigan-based Gundlach Champion will oversee construction at the property. Gundlach Champion is also familiar with the property after having built the Island hotel’s Sun Tower as well as the casino expansion back in 1998. The designing, engineering and construction of the expansion is expected to begin in the next few months. Construction is slated to get underway in June, and the new features are expected to open at some point in 2021.

The casino’s current gaming floor includes a casino occupying nearly 409,000 square feet of space with over 1,200 games. There are countless slot machines as well as a poker room, bingo, blackjack, craps and roulette. The property is also home to an entertainment venue featuring over 1,300 seats.

Sports Betting On the Way in Michigan?

The new expansion is not expected to account for the possibility of the legalization of sports betting. However, the FireKeepers Casino in nearby Battle Creek will soon feature sports betting. The Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi, which runs the casino, has already partnered with Scientific Games Corporation in order to provide sportsbook services.

In December, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer officially signed the Lawful Sports Betting Act. The new legislation grants the Michigan Gaming Control Board the ability to hand out sports betting licenses to the state’s Indian tribal casinos. 3 commercial casinos located in the Detroit metro area will also be able to provide sports betting services.

At the time the bill was signed into law, Michigan became the 20th state in the US to pass a law legalizing sports betting. Those licenses will cost $100,000, and they can be renewed on a yearly basis for $50,000. Tribal sportsbooks will be taxed by the state at a rate of 8.4 percent, while the commercial casinos in Detroit will be taxed 11.75 percent. Detroit has a mandatory 3.25 percent add-on tax that applies to any and all forms of gambling.

The legalization of sports betting is expected to generate about $19 million in revenue for Michigan, according to estimates.

$100 Million Michigan Casino Expansion is Now Underway

States around the country are working hard to update their casino industries. Michigan, which is home to many Native American tribal casinos, is looking at plans to earn more revenue from its gambling market. This week, the Gun Lake Tribe officially got started on its $100 million Michigan casino expansion project.Gun Lake Casino Logo

It’s exciting news for gambling fans in the Western Michigan area. Today, we’re going to take a quick look at Michigan’s gambling industry. We’ll also talk about what the Gun Lake Tribe has planned for its casino. Let’s get started!

Michigan’s Casino Industry in a Nutshell

Michigan isn’t typically thought of as a US gambling hub, but perhaps it should be. There are a huge number of gambling venues in this state, many of which are full-blown casino-resorts. It’s clear that lawmakers are investing in this industry and want to earn as much money in taxes as possible.

In the 1980s, state officials began allowing Native American tribes to start operating limited gambling venues. At first, these “casinos” could only offer players games such as Keno and bingo. In 1996, lawmakers decided it was time to legalize full-scale casino gambling.

Michigan officially decided to make commercial casinos legal that year. Plans were approved to allow three casinos in downtown Detroit. In 1999, the first of these casinos opened its doors to the public.

As we’ve already mentioned, there are now many incredible casino gambling establishments in this state.  The Gun Lake Tribe has been discussing plans to expand its casino for years. Now, this expansion project is officially underway.

Gun Lake Tribe’s $100 Michigan Casino Expansion Begins

The Gun Lake Casino in Wayland, MI, is an extremely popular venue for gamblers in the western area of the state. Unfortunately, it’s become a little outdated over the years. An increase in nearby competition has also contributed to the casino generating less revenue.

This week, officials within the Gun Lake Tribe confirmed that their $100 million Michigan casino expansion is officially underway. According to the tribe, it will add about 76,000 square feet of gaming space to the casino floor. More than 2,000 slot machines, 47 table games, and a high-limit room are also being added.

Tribal Chairman Bob Peters commented on the new plans to the media this weekend.

“We are proud of the effort of our team members that has driven the continued success of Gun Lake Casino and our Tribe’s contributions to Michigan’s economy in the last eight years,” he said. “These expansion plans allow us to build on these efforts and provide even more employment opportunities and increased economic impact in our local communities.”

This expansion will also double the size of the casino’s entertainment area. Hope is that it helps to bring in better shows to the venue.

Michigan Lawmakers Still Hesitant to Embrace Sports Betting

When PASPA was struck down in May of 2018, many analysts predicted that Michigan would be one of the first states to legalize this form of gambling. Sports betting legislation was introduced here, yet it’s failed to be formally enacted.

The proposed bill would allow any holder of a casino license to “accept wagers on sporting events.” The state’s gaming board would be required to regulate this industry. The bill was briefly approved by the state’s legislature, yet Governor Gretchen Whitmer vetoed it.

It still seems likely that sports gambling will be made legal here at some point. Many of the states with legal sports betting markets are earning millions of dollars a month from this industry. As a state with so many legal casino gambling options, it would make no sense to continue prohibiting sports betting.

There’s also a chance that online casino gambling will become regulated here in the future. At the moment, there are a huge number of online casinos in MI that are available. Lawmakers attempted to regulate this industry earlier this year, yet once again, Governor Whitmer shut these plans down.

The new Michigan casino expansion is underway. We’ll need to wait and see how effective it is as drawing in more gamblers for the Gun Lake Tribe.

Stay tuned for more Michigan casino news over the next few months!