Tioga Downs Opens with New Gaming Floor

by Jim Hall

Tioga Downs CasinoTioga Downs has opened their new casino after waiting more than three years for a gaming license.

Opening a casino is no small feat. It takes years of preparation from creating the plans for the venue to getting the regulatory approvals and licensing. For many operators, it can take millions of dollars plus many hours of work to see the dream of opening a gaming venue come to fruition. For Tioga Downs, it has taken over three years for the venue to earn a gaming license to be able to open table games on a brand new gaming floor. The venue is now open and players will find there are 33 table games offered on-site including craps, blackjack and roulette.

New Gaming Floor

When players arrive at the Tioga Downs they will be greeted by an expansive gaming floor featuring 33 table games. Games included are roulette, craps and blackjack along with popular casino games including Let It Ride, Big 6 Wheel, 3 Card Poker, 4 Card Poker, Pai Gow Poker and Ultimate Texas Hold’em.

As part of the construction plans, the casino decided to rebuild the Winner’s Circle Lounge which will now be home to the Poker Room. This area of the casino consists of twelve gaming tables with as many as ten players able to sit at each table. The room can hold as many as 120 players and there are already plans in place for several tournament events to take place at the venue next year.

Along with adding new games to the venue, players will find the casino replaced the video lottery terminals that were previously on site. New slot machines took the place of 798 video lottery terminals and once the venue is finished with the changes, 944 games will be located on site. Newly released titles that can be enjoyed include Plants vs Zombies and Game of Thrones. Many of the newer machines offer a modern profile and have a sleek design when compared to the older VLT games.

Scott Freeman is the General Manager and President of the Tioga Downs who stated that the trend in slot manufacturing the past few years has been to create games that are bigger as well as more comfortable for consumers. According to Freeman, the dynamic themes and interactive bonuses of the games will give guests a better overall gaming experience.

Additional Changes

Along with the new gaming options, Tioga Downs also added in new changes to be of benefit to visitors. USB charging stations have been placed in the bases of the gaming machines so visitors can charge mobile devices while playing. This will be a big benefit for many players as no one likes to leave the table to go charge a phone or be out of touch due to a dead battery.

A Long Road

It has taken more than three years for the gaming venue to be able to open the new gaming area. Proposal 1 was passed all those years ago which allowed a limited number of commercial gaming licenses to be provided in New York State. Tioga Downs was unsuccessful at first in obtaining a license but eventually they were granted permission after a second bidding process.

Jeff Gural, the owner of Tioga Downs, commented on the recent opening by stating that the journey has been long but one that he has stated from the beginning that it is an important one for the people of the Southern Tier. The venue has created a lot of jobs as well as revenue and opportunity for the region plus being beneficial for local businesses and nonprofit organizations. Gural is appreciative of the local and state officials along with the Southern Tier community for the overwhelming support for the project that helped it come to fruition.