Caesars Entertainment commenced a $325 million renovation of Harrah’s New Orleans in January 2021 and the operator said that effort will accelerate next month.
Some of the more visible alterations to the lone casino-hotel in the Crescent City that will be seen in early 2023 include renovations to 25% of the gaming area and external changes that are in line with the operator’s properties bearing the Caesars Palace name. Caesars will eventually pull the Harrah’s name from the venue, renaming it Caesars New Orleans, but a timeline for that move hasn’t been announced.
As reported by Stephanie Riegel for NOLA.com, the current phase of improvements at the integrated resort is scheduled to be completed by next April. All renovations are slated to be finished by the summer of 2024.
The real estate of Harrah’s New Orleans is owned by VICI Properties. The landlord acquired that property, Harrah’s Laughlin, and Harrah’s Atlantic City for $3.2 billion as part of Eldorado’s takeover of Caesars. However, costs to spruce up the venue fall to Caesars.
Harrah’s New Orleans Improvements Part of Bigger Louisiana Plans
The $325 million Caesars is spending to bolster its New Orleans casino-resort is part of a larger approximately $500 million spending plan in Louisiana.
The state is one of the largest gaming markets in the US and is home to several Caesars-operated venues beyond New Orleans. The expenditures in the state were pledged by the company to regulators in 2019.
When Eldorado Resorts was courting “old Caesars,” CEO Tom Reeg promised the Louisiana Gaming Control Board (LGCB) the company would spend $500 million through 2024 refurbishing its Pelican State properties. Reeg is now chief executive of “new Caesars.”
As part of its commitment to shore up its Louisiana properties, Caesars landed monopoly protection for the New Orleans through 2054.
Harrah’s New Orleans Courting More Big Spenders
Harrah’s New Orleans opened in 1999 and while that’s not particularly old for a hotel or gaming venue, the industry is evolving rapidly as are consume tastes, indicating casino operators need to stay on top of those shifting demands.
On a related noted, part of the renovation effort at the New Orleans casino property includes significant additions to available guestrooms. A new 340-room hotel is being built next to the gaming property and two of its 14 floors will be a posh Nobu Hotel aimed at affluent clientele.
Harrah’s New Orleans already has 450 rooms, but the added space is necessary because in the past, the venue had to send guests — many of whom were VIPs — to rival hotels during busy periods. It’s possible that with added accommodations, the debut of the Nobu floors and the transition to the Caesars name, the New Orleans casino-resort will be better able to attract and retain high-end bettors.
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