The Royal River Casino Bingo & Motel in South Dakota is a popular casino that is run by the Flandreau Santee Sioux tribe. The casino which is spread across 17,000 square feet and has a 120 room hotel has done reasonably well and generated significant revenue for the tribe.
The 400 member Flandreau Santee Sioux tribe recently announced that it was looking to diversify its business interests and launch the first ever marijuana resort in the country as the tribe believes that this unique concept will turn out to be a great success. Tribal leaders plan to set up a modern club that will have a nightclub, a music venue located outdoors, a bar and food counter, arcade games, a special marijuana smoking lounge and over the course of time, slot machines.
Back in June 2015, the US Justice Department approved a new policy that gave American tribes permission to grow and sell marijuana on their reservation land. Tribal leaders want to make use of this liberty and have legalized marijuana on their reservation. They plan to cultivate the plants on their property and then later sell the product in their smoking lounges. The parcels are expected to be priced between $12.50 and $15 for every 1 gram bag. The tribe plans to open its marijuana lounge to the public before the end of the year and expect sales beginning on New Year’s Eve.
Santee Sioux tribal president Anthony Reider has high expectations of the first ever marijuana lounge and expects the venture to generate profit of around $2 million per month. The tribe will market the lounge as an adult playground and expect a constant flow of visitors who want to experience a marijuana lounge for the first time.
The success of the venture in South Dakota will be based on how well and how fast the Santee Sioux is able to cultivate and market marijuana. The tribe has decided to hire Monarch America, a consulting firm based out of Denver to teach them the basics of cultivating marijuana.
Jonathan Hunt, chief grower and vice president of Monarch America stated that the company had been hired because the tribe wants to make sure that everything is done efficiently and safely at all times. Over thirty different marijuana strains will be cultivated and then sold under unique names like ‘‘Big Blue Cheese”, ‘‘Gorilla Glue’’ and “Shot Glass’’.
If the venture turns out to be successful, there may be a number of other tribes interested in experimenting with marijuana lounges in their casinos.