A total of 17 gaming development companies have officially submitted bids for the four casino licenses to be awarded in New York. The licenses will be located in three upstate regions: the Catskills and Hudson Valley, the Albany area and in a strip of northwestern New York that runs from Binghamton to Lake Ontario.
Here’s a quick rundown of some of the bids:
• Caesars Entertainment is pitching Caesars New York, an $880 million luxury casino resort located in Woodbury. Situated in the heart of the Hudson Valley, approximately 50 miles from New York City, the proposed project will be a sustainably designed, contemporary structure that complements the region's natural surroundings to create a world-class entertainment retreat. The resort is projected to attract more than 10 million visitors a year, making it a strong economic engine for the State of New York, Orange County and Woodbury. Caesars New York will work closely with other businesses in the State to maximize the economic development opportunity in the region as outlined in the Gaming Act.
The proposed resort, situated on a wooded 115?acre site in Woodbury, will include approximately 300 luxury hotel rooms, suites and villas, 2,560 state?of?the?art slot machines, 190 table games and 50 poker tables. The poker room will carry the World Series of Poker brand and become a leading East Coast home to the WSOP and its events, many of which are broadcast on ESPN. Caesars New York will include a flexible entertainment space, ideally suited for business meetings, celebrations, entertainment and WSOP circuit events.
Based on current estimates, Caesars projects an estimated total of $230 million in anticipated annual tax revenues with $29 million annually going to the local community and $10 million to Orange County. The project is anticipated to create approximately 4,500 direct jobs including 1,500 construction jobs and approximately 3,000 permanent, well?paying, mostly union jobs.
"We have a tremendous opportunity to bring the Caesars brand to New York State and create a world?class entertainment facility, adding a new destination the Total Rewards loyalty network and attracting visitors from throughout the region and around the world," said Gary Loveman, chairman and chief executive officer of Caesars Entertainment in a prepared statement. "If we are successful in winning a license, Caesars New York will create thousands of jobs and become an engine for economic growth in the area. We are grateful for the support we have received from Woodbury residents and businesses and look forward to working closely with local officials if we win a license."
• Hard Rock International submitted a proposal for Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Rensselaer, an entertainment destination that would be located along the Hudson River in Rensselaer, NY.
According to company press materials, the approximately $300 million integrated resort and entertainment destination would feature 100 luxury hotel rooms, including signature Rock Star Suites, a Rock Spa featuring multiple treatment rooms, a Body Rock fitness center, meeting rooms, and approximately 50 casino table games and 1,500 slot machines. In addition, the project would feature numerous food and beverage options, including a world?famous Hard Rock Cafe featuring iconic memorabilia from music stars young and old; contemporary American cuisine; and live music.
The centerpiece of the project would be a new pedestrian?friendly riverwalk, transforming the Rensselaer waterfront with outdoor dining, a riverfront pool and cabanas, as well as an outdoor gaming area for casino patrons, all providing unmatched views of the Hudson River and the Downtown Albany skyline.
"We are proud to submit our application for the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Rensselaer in collaboration with NYS Funding LLC and the City of Rensselaer," said Jim Allen, chairman of Hard Rock International in a prepared statement. "This one?of?a?kind entertainment destination will be built to attract visitors from throughout the region, state of New York and local community. The result will positively impact the economy and greatly enhance the entertainment and tourism options in the Capital Region."
• Mohegan Sun is pushing a project for the Catskills/Hudson Valley region—a $550 million destination resort casino on the site of the historic former Concord Resort Hotel in Thompson, Sullivan County. The facility would be branded as "Mohegan Sun at the Concord."
The destination resort and casino would extend over approximately 60 acres of the 140.3 acre property and would be developed by Mohegan Sun in partnership with the Cappelli Organization, which owns and manages the property. Planned amenities at Mohegan Sun at the Concord include seven unique dining options at a variety of price points, a 252-room hotel complex, performance venues of all sizes for music, comedy, and live shows and 52,000 square feet of casino space incorporating more than 2,100 gaming positions. Retail and nightlife offerings are planned as well.
Mohegan Sun at the Concord is estimated to produce $3 billion to $3.7 billion in total economic benefits over a 20-year period, with approximately $1.5 billion to $1.86 billion of those gains to be realized in Sullivan County alone, according to a study conducted by Shepstone Management Company. In addition, Mohegan Sun at the Concord is expected to create at least 4,500 construction jobs and more than 2,100 permanent jobs once the resort is complete.
"We're tremendously excited to share our vision for the future of Sullivan County—a vision that features a world-class entertainment and tourism destination that will generate thousands of jobs and new economic development for the region," said Mitchell Etess, CEO of the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority in a prepared statement. "Just as important, Mohegan Sun at the Concord will be a unique destination with one-of-a-kind amenities that will attract a new generation of visitors to this former center of tourism in the beautiful Catskills."
• Penn National and The Cordish Companies also applied for a Hudson Valley/Catskills Region license with the $750 million Live! Hotel & Casino New York. This resort will include an upscale boutique hotel with over 300 rooms and luxury suites; a destination spa and fitness center; over 3,000 slot machines; more than 250 live table games, including poker; several marquee restaurants; as well as a live entertainment venue and a spacious conference center.
The facility will serve as a regional economic engine, creating more than 4,000 permanent local jobs and nearly 3,000 construction jobs. Cordish and Penn National’s application also includes the creation of a unique Angel Incubator—“H2V2”—nonprofit organization to attract new or existing out-of-state manufacturing, computer science, and research businesses to the Hudson Valley/Catskills Region.
“Our team has worked tirelessly for the last three months to develop the best project for the Hudson Valley/Catskills Region,” said David Cordish, chairman of The Cordish Companies in a prepared statement. “No other applicant can match our comprehensive plan to maximize revenue and jobs in the state of New York while simultaneously empowering the region to grow exponentially for years to come.”
According to published reports, all 17 bidders will give oral presentations to the state Gaming Facility Location Board, whose members are appointed by the New York State Gaming Commission, by the end of July. The location board will review the submissions and announce winners this fall.