Royal River Casino celebrates $30M expansion

Courtesy photo

FLANDREAU – Royal River Casino and Hotel is hosting its Relaunch Weekend today through Sunday to celebrate the substantial completion of its more than $30 million ground-up renovation and expansion project. 

The project was made possible through a strategic investment from the Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe to the Casino Resort, which the tribe has owned and operated since 1990. The complex has been going through a multi-year renovation and expansion with the support of architecture firm Leo A Daly and construction firm Henry Carlson. 

The Relaunch Weekend will kick off today with a ribbon-cutting and firework show at 7:30 p.m. followed by a concert featuring country act Lonestar.

The weekend will continue on Saturday night with music featuring the Eli Young Band at 8 p.m. Royal River Relaunch Weekend will wrap up Sunday with one lucky guest driving away in a brand new 2019 GMC Yukon XL SLT. 

“To date, over $25 million has been invested in the floor-to-ceiling renovation and expansion project. With each phase of the project, guests to the casino have continued to enjoy the exceptional guest service the property has become known for, while also benefiting from the continued improvements in air quality, aesthetic and overall gaming experience,” Senior Operations Director Tim Morrissey said in August.

Phase 1 of the project saw the completion to the hotel room renovations including updating to carpet, wall covering, room furnishing, and conversion to a 100% smoke-free hotel complex.  

Phase 2 of the project was finalized in winter 2017 with the completion of the hotel corridors and hotel lobby ground-up renovation. Also included in Phase 2 was the completion of a state-of-the-art administrative building and expansion of the casino gaming floor, repurposing what had previously been the bingo hall. Finally, Phase 2 saw the addition of a new high-end VIP Lounge offering a non-smoking bar off the casino floor featuring beer and specialty cocktails.  

Phase 3 of the project brought the expansion of the gaming floor, repurposing what was previously the administrative offices. 

Also included in Phase 3 was the reconstruction of the casino porte-cochere, expansion of the casino grand entry, and relocation of the table games area.  

With the completion of Phase 4, guests will begin to enjoy a newly created center gaming bar, offering premium draft beer and the best bar top gaming option in the region. 

Also included in the Phase 4 completion is the renovation and expansion of the snack bar, which will now offer breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night snacks. 

The continued renovation and expansion of the gaming floor will allow for future growth to over 700 slot machines.

The final phase of the project was completed this week and includes the completion of the gaming floor expansion as well as a full-scale restaurant and buffet expansion. New air handler units to provide state-of-the-art air filtration have come online, as well as new HVAC, plumbing and electrical systems.  

“The $30 million-plus investment is consistent with the casino and tribe’s mission to continuously position Royal River Casino and Hotel as the premier entertainment destination in the region. Offering the newest and best gaming, dining and entertainment option to our guests,” Morrissey said.

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