A massive electric guitar greets guests at the Hard Rock casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, as seen in this photo taken on January 16, 2020. Hard Rock Chairman Jim Allen announced on October 26, 2021, that his company is interested in constructing a casino in the state of New York. However, the company has not abandoned its plans to build a casino in northern New Jersey, 8 miles from the centre of Manhattan. (AP Photographer Wayne Parry)
(AP) — ATLANTIC CITY, New Jersey (AP) — Even as the company moves forward with plans to build another casino in northern New Jersey, just 8 miles away, Hard Rock intends to build a casino in New York City or the surrounding area.
Jim Allen, the chairwoman of the Seminole Indian tribe’s global gambling, entertainment, and hospitality firm, stated on Tuesday that Hard Rock will submit an expression of interest to New York officials before the December 10 deadline.
Three casino licenses remain available in New York’s downstate region, which includes New York City. Because of the region’s large population and abundance of cash, this part of the state has long been regarded as the holy grail of the casino industry.
Allen stated that Hard Rock has been planning a project in New York since the possibility was raised seven years ago. Allen made this remark at the East Coast Gaming Congress in Atlantic City.
Following that, Allen stated in an interview that the company had no intention of abandoning the plan it presented in 2015 to build a casino resort at the Meadowlands Racetrack, which is located just outside of New York City.
“We’re interested in both markets, and if God is gracious enough to allow us to operate in both, we’d be delighted,” he said. “We have an interest in both markets.”
Hard Rock would need to get approval from New Jersey voters in order to build in the Meadowlands. They decisively rejected a proposal in 2016 that would have allowed casinos in areas of New Jersey other than Atlantic City, which is now the state’s only location where such establishments are legal.
According to Allen, whose company spent $500 million in 2018 to open a Hard Rock casino in Atlantic City, the market in New York and northern New Jersey is large enough to support multiple casinos.
He inquired about the gambling establishments in Atlantic City, which has nine casinos, by asking, “How many casinos do you have lined up right here?” “There’s no doubt in my mind that the market is large enough.”
The New York State Gaming Commission has issued a request for expressions of interest in the three remaining casino licenses. This decision was made last week. Other major casino companies, including Caesars Entertainment, Wynn Resorts, Bally’s, and Las Vegas Sands, have expressed interest in the property. Four of the state’s seven non-tribal casinos are located in New York’s upstate region, and all were approved by voters in 2013.
According to a gambling expert who teaches at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, “it may be plausible that a market as large as metro New York City could support two properties.” David Schwartz, a gambling historian who teaches at the university,
Jeff Gural, owner of the Meadowlands Racetrack and two racetrack casinos in upstate New York, stated that he and Allen had not discussed whether Gural might partner with Hard Rock on a New York project, or how such a development might affect their partnership in New Jersey. Gural owns the Meadowlands Racetrack.
Ralph Caputo, a Democratic member of the New Jersey State Assembly from northern New Jersey, expressed doubts about the viability of two Hard Rock ventures being developed so close to each other. He did, however, mention the incredible financial performance of the The Meadowlands Racetrack, in New Jersey’s leading market for sports betting in the country, proves that supporters of gambling in northern New Jersey were correct.
The Meadowlands is responsible for half of the monthly revenue generated by sports betting in the state of New Jersey. In September, New Jersey became the first state in the United States to process more than one billion dollars in sports wagers in a single month.
According to Caputo, “all of the income that could be spent is up here.” “We were well aware of what we were talking about.”
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