Maryland Live Casino, the mid-Atlantic region's newest gaming and entertainment destination, which opened the night of June 6, drew an overflow crowd, including thousands who weren’t able to gain entry during the tight four-hour window from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.

Mario Maesano, the casino's vice president of marketing, told the Baltimore Sunthat "well over 10,000 people" spent time (and money) inside the facility Wednesday night into Thursday, including about 2,000 VIPs invited in three hours before the official opening.

"Looking around the floor today, I think we've already exceeded that," he said around 4:15 p.m. Thursday. Developed and owned by The Cordish Companies, Maryland Live represents an investment of $500 million and is one of the largest construction projects in the state of Maryland. The project broke ground in January 2011 and has employed approximately 2,500 workers through its development. Upon completion in October 2012, the property will employ approximately 1,500 employees; generate $400 million in tax revenue per year to support local schools, making it the single largest annual and ongoing source of revenue for Maryland's children; and generate $60 million in annual spending on goods and services, all benefiting the local economy.

Located at the Arundel Mills Mall in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, the first phase of the casino opened with approximately 3,200 Las Vegas-style slot machines and electronic table games, including Blackjack, Roulette, Mini-Baccarat, and Pai Gow Poker. Slot offerings include a mix of the latest games and classic favorites, such as Monopoly, Sex and the City, Wizard of Oz, Hot Shots and a full line of Quick Hits and Progressives.

A lineup of nationally-acclaimed restaurant brands, such as Bobby's Burger Palace, from celebrated chef Bobby Flay, The Cheesecake Factory and Baltimore-based Phillips Seafood will join the Live Market Buffet and Noodles, an Asian wok and noodle bar, to offer a variety of dining options. Guest can also place their bets, while placing their drink orders, at the R Bar, a unique, interactive bar inspired by the game of Roulette, where the bartenders serve double-duty as "dealers" calling the game.

Between July and October, Maryland Live will open Rams Head Center Stage, another regional favorite, featuring live entertainment nightly; and The Prime Rib, the legendary, Zagat-award winning steakhouse, also based in Maryland. The Shop Live! retail store, a bus lobby, and an additional 1,550 slots and electronic table games, including High Limit Slots, will complete the experience.