Margaritaville casino project in Biloxi announced
Harrah's and Jimmy Buffett announced yesterday
that the plans for the new Margaritaville casino in Biloxi have
famous singer Jimmy Buffett has teamed up with Harrah's
Entertainment to build the biggest gambling project in
post-Katrina Mississippi, according to the state's Gaming Board.
The initial cost for building the casino is set at $704 million
but it could easily reach $1 billion with second phase
construction. Margaritaville Casino and Resort will occupy the
former sites of Grand Casino and Casino Magic and it's planned
to open at 2010.
The project includes about 100,000 square feet
of casino floor, 250,000 square feet of retail space, about
66,000 square feet of meeting space, a pool deck with tropical
landscaping, a spa, 420 new hotel rooms and 378 renovated hotel
rooms that are part of Grand Casino.
Simon Property Group, which is the largest
real estate company in North America, would lend its expertise
to retail real estate operations. The project would also include
a huge shopping area, restaurants and other entertainment
venues, which would make the casino resort attractive not only
to gamblers but to regular tourists, as well.
Buffett and his company must be found suitable
to hold a gaming license, and a standard investigation by the
Mississippi Gaming Commission is undergoing.
Harrah's plans to continue operating Grand
Casino in Biloxi during construction.