In Connecticut, revenue driven to the state’s general fund from it’s two tribal casinos equals 25% of their gross slot revenue. Since the recession of 2007, revenue has decreased, causing Connecticut’s casinos to look at diversifying their interests and decreasing the number of slot machines on the casino floor.
Mohegan Sun had its best month in nearly three years in July, at least in terms of slot-machine revenue. The casino kept $55.9 million after paying out prizes, its highest “win” since it kept $56.2 million in August 2014 — a 35-month stretch.
Mohegan Sun now has more slot machines than Foxwoods on the floor, but this isn’t the reason for the difference in revenue direction. But walking around either casino brings a feeling of spaciousness more than ever before. Foxwoods has closed off areas, making gaming spaces smaller, such as the newly renovated and now non-smoking Rainmaker Casino. Mohegan Sun has areas that are just more open – obviously because “something” used to be sitting there. During July, Mohegan Sun operated, on average, 4,945 slots machines; Foxwoods averaged 4,178 – that’s approximately 25-35% less than it their heyday around the year 2005.
Mohegan Sun’s success is summed up by one word – arena. No casino in the northeast has a 10,000 seat arena that can house a pro sports team one night and Billy Joel for the next two nights – all under the same roof of three casino areas. The first expansion of the Sky Casino and Hotel included the arena – a genius move. And that arena brings people in with great entertainment on a consistent basis, many who come early or stay after to gamble. Mohegan Sun Arena is now ranked consistently among the top venues in the world according to Billboard Magazine, Pollstar and Venues Today. It has won “Casino of The Year” at the Country Music Awards in 2008 & 2010 and in 2013, was voted “Arena Of The Year” at the G2E Global Gaming Conference in Las Vegas.
To be fair, Foxwoods has been doing a lot of renovation on it’s own. Foxwoods President and CEO Felix Rappaport noted that “Having our second most popular casino 50 percent disrupted for eight months had a huge impact on us,” referring to the Great Cedar Casino with the addition of 300 new slots and stadium gaming. For more on the re-opening of the Great Cedar Casino, click on Stadium Gaming, Great Cedar Renovations at Foxwoods
Despite it’s vast retail, dining and recreational options, slot machines are still Foxwoods’ largest revenue source, according to
This week, we will take a look at the many additions to the Foxwoods dining and entertainment portfolio, including thrill rides and celebrity chefs. Foxwoods may not have an “arena,” but they continue to change and provide more options to compete with the increasing competitive market in southern New England.
That’s all for now.