Since the amended gaming compact went into effect in May, it’s been an exciting time for us at Gila River Hotels & Casinos. Sports betting has been highly anticipated in Arizona and just this month, we announced a partnership with BetMGM and the Arizona Cardinals for retail and online sports betting.
When it came to exploring our partner in sports betting, we wanted to make sure it would deliver an experience that exceeds our guests’ expectations. We believe the unity with BetMGM, the King of sportsbooks, and the Arizona Cardinals, a longstanding partner of Gila River for over 15 years, will do just that. When you combine these three brands, it not only gives us the capability to capture a larger audience but deliver the ultimate sports betting experience in Arizona and make a lasting impact on the community.
Sports betting has evolved over the years, especially in the digital age, and my vision is to bring a modern and elevated approach to sports betting at Gila River.
All three of our properties – Wild Horse Pass and Lone Butte in Chandler and Vee Quiva in the West Valley – will feature custom built BetMGM sportsbooks, set to open soon. The sportsbooks will feature modern technology for guests to watch their favorite teams, a food and beverage component, and eye-catching design elements.
While the sportsbooks are under construction, each of our properties will be ready to offer a sports betting experience to our guests on September 9 with temporary sports betting kiosks.
Sports betting is a win-win for both the Gila River Indian Community and the state of Arizona. Revenue generated from the sportsbooks will support the Gila River Indian Community – particularly vital programs that benefit housing, health care and social services. And under the Arizona Tribal-State Gaming compacts, 12% of the tribe’s revenue gets invested back into Arizona to improve education, health care, conservation and public safety across the state.
August was a busy month for us. Not only did we announce our sports betting partnership, but we also debuted 15 live Las Vegas-style table games at our Wild Horse Pass property in Chandler, including craps, roulette and baccarat. It was a historic moment in our 27-year history.
The new table games have already been very desired by our guests and like sports betting, we are looking forward to the additional jobs and tourism, as well as increased opportunities to support the community these games will bring. It’s also very exciting for our guests who will no longer need to travel to Las Vegas to experience the excitement and energy of these highly anticipated live table games.
These new offerings wouldn’t be anything without the team members at Gila River Hotels & Casinos. They constitute a dynamic group that has cultivated a workplace filled with hard working and dedicated individuals, bringing experience that elevates what Gila River has to offer.
As a lifelong resident of Arizona and member of the Gila River Indian Community, these milestones in the tribe’s history continue to bring me joy and I am proud to represent Gila River Hotels & Casinos and the community every day.
Kenneth Manuel is CEO of Gila River Hotels & Casinos.