Published on: November 19, 2022, 02:41 am.
Last updated: 18 November 2022, 04:15.
Caesars Virginia in Danville is one of four commercial casinos under construction in the state. Caesars Entertainment, which is leading the Southside Regional Casino development in Virginia, announced this week that it plans to open a temporary gaming space next July at the Schoolfield site.
Danville was one of five cities that qualified to consider a casino venture through the 2020 gaming bill. Local voters approved Caesars’ filing of the casino resort during the November election of that year .
Caesars is in the midst of ground-up work on the former Dan River Mills textile complex. The Las Vegas casino giant is demolishing numerous former manufacturing and warehouse buildings on the roughly 85-acre property.
In a nod to the historic past of the site, which served as the economic heartland of the Danville region for many decades until the turn of the century, Caesars Virginia plans to preserve and incorporate the “Three Sisters” baskets into the casino’s final resort .
Temporary casino goals July 2023
As Casino.org reported earlier this month, Caesars Virginia plans to follow Hard Rock Bristol’s lead in opening a temporary casino space as construction on the full-scale resort continues.
The 2020 gaming bill allows casinos under construction licensed by the Virginia Lottery Board to open temporary gaming spaces during construction. That is as long as the temporary space is on the same site where the permanent casino is being built. Hard Rock Bristol made history last July by opening the first legal casino in Virginia.
Caesars is investing $650 million to build Caesars Virginia. The resort will feature a casino floor with 1,300 slot machines, 85 table games, 24 electronic table games, the World Series of Poker Room and a Caesars Sportsbook.
Caesars Virginia will also include a 300-room hotel, a 2,500-seat theater and 40,000 square feet of convention space. Construction on the resort is set to take place next year, with the casino company targeting a grand opening of the full destination sometime in 2024.
But by next July, Caesars Virginia hopes to have a temporary casino open. Caesars said work on the temporary casino at the Danville site is ongoing.
Intermediate gaming spaces allow casinos to start building their customer bases by enrolling players in their rewards programs. Temporary casinos also allow for more immediate tax flow and job generation for the local towns they are designed to support.
Regional hotel for the benefit
Caesars Danville’s temporary casino will draw visitors from southern Virginia and northern North Carolina.
Danville is just 50 miles north of Durham and about 60 miles north of Raleigh. Danville is also only 40 miles from Greensboro and 50 miles from Winston-Salem.
Since Caesars’ Danville hotel won’t be ready next summer when its temporary casino turns on the slot machines, regional hotels should benefit from the influx of visitors.
We hope that the hotels that are here in our community can handle this influx of visitors.” said Danville City Manager Ken Larking WDBJ this week. “Fortunately, we have a few hotels that are either newly built and just now open in the last few months, plus some that are currently under construction that will be open soon.”
Once Caesars Danville is fully completed, the casino will repurpose the temporary gaming venue.