Casinos in the US Continue to Expand at an Exponential Pace

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While Internet gambling in the United States gets attacked, land based casinos across the country are expanding at exponential rates, building new sites that contain various attractions to lure those inclined to spend their money for entertainment. Iowa is the latest as it is expanding its gambling position to include 20 casinos.

Opening ceremonies are this month for two casinos, in Burlington and Waterloo. Two other casino projects are planned at Council Bluff.

“Catfish Bend Casino is opening its $35 million dollar complex at noon on Monday,” said Jerry Baum, the casinos general manager. Located on US highway 61 it will offer 680 slot machines and 18 table games, plus poker. The complex will offer a bowling center, conference facilities, restaurants, an indoor water park, an indoor go-cart center and an arcade, among other amenities.

Isle of Capri Casinos plans to open on June 30,” said Kim Hardy, the casino general manager. This casino will feature a pool, spa, nightclub and additional amenities at a cost of $175 million.

Ameristar Casinos and Harrah’s Entertainment, Inc. are also in competition in western Iowa, each announcing expansion plans for their Council Bluffs properties.

Ameristar plans a $100 million expansion that the Iowa Race and Gaming Commission approved this past Thursday. “The project will double the size of the casino floor, add a restaurant and bars, a VIP lounge and a parking garage,” said Theresa Meyer, Ameristar’s general manager.

Harrah’s which operates the Horseshoe Casino in Council Bluffs and competes directly with Ameristar in that area, announced plans to build a new hotel next to the casino and will be completed next spring. Last year there was an $85 million expansion at the Horseshoe, and the hotel addition will complement the expansion.

The Waterloo gambling complex will be open on June 30. It is the last of four new casinos authorized by the state two years ago.

Kim Hardy said, “Although there are no plans for a grand opening there will be a private party on June 30.”

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