Resorts World Hudson Valley is set to open this fall, hoping to rejuvenate the mall

Published on: September 12, 2022, 01:37 am.

Last update: September 12, 2022, 01:39.

Resorts World Hudson Valley plans to open this fall to its 90,000-square-foot slots and arcade.

Resorts World Hudson Valley Casino in New York
Construction workers at Resorts World Hudson Valley install a video lottery terminal at the future Newburgh Mall casino. The company says the no-jewels gaming venue will be geared towards gamers. (Image: Resorts World Hudson Valley)

Resorts World Hudson Valley is replacing a former Bon-Ton department store at Newburgh Mall in upstate New York. The facility will include approximately 1,200 video lottery terminals (VLT) and electronic table games, plus a sports bar where online sports betting will be encouraged through the Resorts World Bet app.

VLTs look, sound and work like slot machines, but differ in how they determine results. While a slot machine uses a random number generator, a VLT spin result is calculated based on a central lottery system that connects all casino terminals.

Empire Resorts, the parent company of the $1 billion Resorts World Catskills integrated casino complex in Monticello, received state approval last year to move its VLT license it previously used to operate machines of games at Monticello Raceway.

Empire acquired the Racino in 1996 and operated it as a VLT casino racetrack until it ceased operations in early 2018. The Malaysian gaming company opened Resorts World Catskills, a larger, full-scale commercial casino with Las Vegas style slots and live dealer table. games in February near the Montecito racetrack.

Locals Casino

Unlike Resorts World Catskills, which is primarily an overnight destination, Empire says Resorts World Hudson Valley will be geared toward locals and regional players.

“It’s quick and easy to get to from the infrastructure and roads that we have right outside our doors, unlike Resorts World Catskills, where it’s a luxury weekend getaway,” said Meghan Taylor, vice president of government affairs at Resorts World. the The Mid-Hudson News.

Taylor explained that there isn’t a hotel or an abundance of dining options for the players. Instead, the facility is game-oriented. She also hopes the VLT casino will lead to new investment coming to the largely vacant mall.

We hope to be a catalyst to drive redevelopment here at the mall,” commented Taylor.

The Newburgh Mall, like so many malls in the US, has seen better days. More than a quarter of the mall’s floor space has remained vacant since 2009. Sears, the mall’s longtime iconic anchor, plans to close next month after 43 years in business.

Once Sears says goodbye, two of Newburgh Mall’s three anchor spaces will be vacant. Resorts World will claim the third berth.

Newburgh is about 30 miles east of Resorts World Catskills. In early 2021, the New York Gaming Commission signed off on Empire Resorts’ application to move its VLT license to Orange County. The casino operator said operating a VLT facility in the same county as its investment in the Catskills would not be a sound business decision.

Local benefit

The Resorts World Hudson Valley building employs 200 construction workers. Once open, the casino is expected to employ more than 250 people. Resorts World Hudson Valley is currently fielding applications from interested job seekers.

Newburgh will receive an estimated $3 million in annual gambling revenue. This represents 10% of the city’s government budget for fiscal year 2022.

New York’s gaming law on local VLT share allocations requires cities to use gaming revenue only to “pay local costs associated with a video lottery gaming facility, reduce real property taxes, or increase support for public schools”.

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