Real Money Gambling News

Hollywood Casino Riverboats Coming Ashore


On Monday, Penn National, the parent corporation of Hollywood Casino revealed intentions to move both of its casinos in Aurora and Joliet from their current riverfront locations to new, more permanent locations near major interstates.

The Pennsylvania-based casino operator included the proposals in an $850 million investment ambitions.

What to Expect for Aurora

An estimated $360 million casino and hotel complex is planned for construction in Aurora, just next to the Chicago Premium Outlets and easily accessible from Interstate 88’s Exit 119. Penn Entertainment claims that the project will have over 900 slot machines and 50 live table games, as well as a baccarat room, a poker room, a Barstool Sportsbook, around 200 hotel rooms, and some restaurants and bars.

The venue’s construction, which will begin in late 2023, will also include a spa, a convention center, and a banquet hall. As expected, the success of the initiative is contingent on obtaining clearance from the relevant regulatory bodies.

What to Expect for Joliet

Penn plans to invest $185 million to construct another land-based casino at Rock Run Crossing in Joliet, Illinois, which is located southeast of the junction of Interstates 80 and 55. The location that is being eyed for the construction of the land-based casino is about two air miles away from the riverboat that serves as the existing Hollywood Casino Joliet.

At Rock Run, there are plans in place to construct a “modern, best-in-class” casino that will have 800 slot machines, 45 table games, and a Barstool Sportsbook. The plan also includes a large events center (10,000 square feet) and some eateries and bars. The start of construction in Joliet is similarly planned for the latter half of 2023, pending necessary governmental clearances.

Other Plans

Penn Entertainment has announced plans to invest the remaining $305 million over the next two years. This money will be used to expand the M Resort hotel in Las Vegas and build a new hotel tower at the Hollywood Casino in Columbus.

About eight miles south of the Las Vegas Strip is the premium M Resort, which has been granted $206 million to expand its existing hotel by 264 rooms. Hollywood Columbus does not have an on-site hotel at this time. To that purpose, Penn proposes investing over $100 million to construct a hotel with 180 guest rooms.

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