- Caesars Windsor
address=377 Riverside Drive East.
Windsor, Ontario, N9A 7H7
rooms=389 room Forum Tower & 369 room Augustus Tower
July 29, 1998 May 17, 1994(Interim Casino)
June 19, 2008 (Caesars Rebranding)
space_gaming=9,290 square meter (100,000 square feet), Legends Sports Book
shows=5,000 seat Colosseum at Caesars Windsor
restaurants=Neros Steakhouse, Market Buffet, Legends Sports Bar, Artist Café, Augustus Café, Pronto Café, Cosmos Lounge and VU Bar
Harrah's Entertainment/ OLGC, LLC
renovations= 2007 - 2008
website= [http://www.caesarswindsor.com/ Caesars Windsor]
Caesars Windsor—formerly Casino Windsor—in Windsor,
Ontariois one of four casinos in the Detroit-Windsorarea. Owned by the government of the province of Ontario, it is operated by Harrah's Entertainment. Both the original Casino Windsor and the new expansion were designed by "WZMH Architects" [ [http://www.wzmh.com http://www.wzmh.com] ] . The casino is located on Windsor's riverfront overlooking the Detroitskyline near the Canadian end of the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel. The creation of this casino was a leading factor in the legalization of casino gamblingin Detroit.
The casino hotel stands at 27 stories tall, and was constructed in 1998. Caesars Windsor attracts about six million visitors annually.Cordiano, Joseph (February 15, 2005). [http://www.ontariocanada.com/ontcan/page.do?page=5900 Government of Ontraio invests in a competitive Casino Windsor] ."Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Trade". Retrieved on October 28, 2007."Caesars Windsor attracts around six million visitors each year and is a key driver of the local economy."] Its main competitors are
MGM Grand Detroit, MotorCity Casino, and Greektown Casinoin Detroit. Caesars Windsor is a non-smoking casino that attracts people from Michigan, Ohio, Illinoisand other states in the Midwest United States.
The Casino is publicly owned by the
Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation; a large portion of the profits are returned to the provincial government.
In December 2006, Harrah's announced that it would change the name of the casino to "Caesars Windsor". The name switch will coincide with a number of other significant changes, including a new 27-story hotel (nicknamed "Augustus" [Friday, June 13th, 2008 edition of the "
Windsor Star"] ), a 5,000 seat entertainment center, and convert|100000|sqft|m2 of convention space.
The changes are necessary to make the casino more desirable to U.S. gamblers. For a variety of reasons: 9/11 border security, closing of the
exchange rategap, a labour strike that closed the casino for a month in 2004, the popularity of the three Detroit properties, and provincial smoking ban, Caesars Windsor has failed to maintain its customer base from its peak years in the late 1990s. Before September 11, 2001, it was the most popular casino in the Detroit market. Efforts are being made to make it a destination resort for tourists, and to reward clients of the Caesars brand, a high end name in gaming. Included in the re-branding to Caesars Windsor, the re-launch will be celebrated with an employee uniform overhaul. The Casino reopened on June 19, 2008 and featured world-famous pianist Billy Joelwho performed at the re-launch ceremonies to an invitation-only crowd. [ [http://www.canada.com/windsorstar/ The Windsor Star] ]
The first Casino Windsor opened in a temporary location in September 1994, as Ontario's first casino. The former Art Gallery of Windsor located on Riverside Drive was refitted to house the interim Casino Windsor. The permanent casino and hotel was opened to the public on July 29, 1998 [ [http://www.casinowindsor.com/Corporate/CompanyHistory.asp Casino Windsor's Company History] ] a few blocks west of the permanent casino.
The casino saw record numbers, attracting millions of customers from the U.S. and Canada. Line-ups wrapped around the building. In response, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation announced it would bring a riverboat casino to the riverfront. The Northern Belle was located at the foot of Ouellette Ave. on the Detroit River. It was open from December 1995 to July 1998.
During this time, the permanent casino was under construction on the former Windsor Market site. It opened on July 29, 1998 with a grand opening celebration with a James Bond 007 theme. Daisy Fuentes and Regis Philbin were among the stars that attended. The new site included a waterfall and tropical entrance, hotel, five restaurants, gift shops and an entertainment lounge.
On February 14, 2005, representatives from the Ontario Government, the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation and the Executive team announced a $400-million expansion project which was completed in June 2008. It added a convention centre, a 5,000-seat entertainment centre and another hotel tower. Renovations also began at the current facility, adding new bars, a large buffet and repositioning many of the slots and table games. The official relaunch happened on
June 19, 2008. [cite web|url=http://www.canada.com/windsorstar/news/story.html?id=ec043786-5a7d-4757-8b25-e730d718c5e8|title=Caesars Windsor 'breathtaking'|last=Vander|first=Chris|publisher=The Windsor Star|accessdate=2008-06-16]
In 2006, the first licensed
sports bookin Canada was opened in the casino at Legends Sports Bar. Players can bet on select professional and college sports through Game Picks sports wagering. The venue is designed with booths and large high-definition televisions above the gaming boards as well as in a theatre style seating section.
Effective May 31, 2006, Casino Windsor became one of the few smoke-free commercial casinos in North America. This was to comply with the "Smoke Free Ontario Act", which bans smoking in all enclosed workplaces and public places.
Initially, the US/Canadian
currencyexchange rate had given people from the United States an economic incentive to gamble at Caesars Windsor. The exchange ratewas a major contributor to U.S. gamblers crossing the border in Casino Windsor's boom years of the late 1990s. The Canadian dollarwas trading below the sixty-five cent mark [ [http://www.bankofcanada.ca/en/rates/can_us_lookup.html Bank of Canada rates lookup] ] compared to the U.S. dollar in the late 1990s, giving U.S. visitors a price incentive to gamble in Windsor as well as spend in the city's hotels and hospitality establishments. The rebounding of the Canadian dollar, in 2006 breaking the ninety cent mark, which is often linked to the higher price of oil, since Canada is an oil exporting nation, has negatively impacted the Casino and the Windsor tourist trade, especially when the added sales taxes are factored into decisions. Nevertheless, because the Canadian government does not tax gambling winnings, the casino often promotes this in order to draw clientele from the United Stateswho are left to themselves to declare taxes on their winnings.
Nevertheless, during 2007, the Canadian dollar eclipsed and even exceeded the U.S. greenback by several cents, which has added to the decline of the Windsor, Ontario hospitality sector. The casino must compete with three Detroit casino resorts which are opening expanded resort style properities in 2008. The positive exchange rate for Canadians has drawn them across the border to shop and gamble, and Windsor is in a
recessionout of sync with the stronger economic pattern in the rest of the country [DeBono, Norman. [http://lfpress.ca/newsstand/CityandRegion/2007/10/22/4595228-sun.html "A city on the ropes"] 20 October 2007. (Accessed 30 October 2007)]
Caesars Windsor is popular with some 19 and 20 year old Americans because the drinking and gambling age in Ontario is 19 compared to 21 in the US.
Caesars Atlantic City
MGM Grand Detroit
* [http://www.casinowindsor.com/ Casino Windsor]
* [http://www.emporis.com/en/wm/bu/?id=124175 Casino Windsor at Emporis.com]
* [http://www.emporis.com/en/wm/bu/?id=casinowindsorhoteltowerii-windsor-canada Casino Windsor Hotel Tower II "Augustus" at Emporis.com]
* [http://skyscraperpage.com/cities/?buildingID=4407 SkyscraperPage.com's Profile on Casino Windsor]
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