The casino industry in Bermuda has serious issues since the Government took some wrong actions. One of the major signs that something was wrong in Bermuda was St Regis Hotel’s refusal to comment on its plans for a gaming hub that was planned. The hotel planned to establish a pub at the Hamilton Princess & Beach Club, but the attempt failed.
The lack of independence:
David Burt, a Minister of Finance and Premier of Bermuda, is presumably the main reason why foreign investors and US banks don’t want to have anything to do with Bermuda’s casino industry. In 2017, new gaming legislation was established, and the Bermuda Gaming Commission and the casino industry lost their independence. The governor recently tried to change the law, but the attempt was unsuccessful.
Since 2017, the minister has been responsible for all decisions related to the gaming industry. He advises the gaming commission, and the Commission is obligated to comply.
If St Regis Hotel decides to terminate the plans for establishing a gaming hub, it would be a great loss for Bermuda since the Government placed all hopes for future economic growth into establishing a strong casino culture in the state. The casino at the Hamilton Princess & Beach Club was expected to provide about 100 people with jobs, and not only that, but the Government officially recognized the casino industry as one of the four key factors that will lead to the island’s complete economic recovery.
More casino options:
The industry was one of the key responsibilities of the Premier, and he wanted to change the legislation, allowing more casino options to the players and operators from Bermuda. The Bermuda Gaming Commission was supposed to decide which options were the best for the island. However, the lack of the Commission’s independence led to questioning the whole sector and losing a significant amount of funds.
At the end of January, the meeting was held, and the attendants were owners of the hotel, casino operators, the Premier, and the Minister of Tourism, Vance Campbell.
After the meeting, the Premier commented: “I continue to be impressed by the commitment of St Regis to introducing a casino at the hotel, and our discussion examined legislative and practical ways to achieve that shared goal. The idle and irresponsible media speculation around gaming has failed to change the owner’s positive outlook for a casino at the property. It is ridiculous to suggest that the Government has not invested time and effort into achieving gaming for Bermuda.”
Last October, the hotel got its first casino license, but the date of possible opening is still unknown. Will the opening be held at all? We don’t know, especially when it is considered that Century Casinos also gave up the plans to open its casino at the Hamilton Princess & Beach Club.
It remains to be seen what the future holds for Bermuda’s casino industry.