Oklahoma has a reason to celebrate – a new casino opened on Lake Texoma, which will greatly improve the overall economy of south-central Oklahoma.
West Bay Casino and Resort finally opened its doors:
West Bay Casino and Resort was opened to the public on Tuesday afternoon after years of planning and working on construction. The project began in 2016 when the State of Oklahoma and the Chickasaw Nation joined forces to bring this magnificent casino resort to life.
However, the grand opening didn’t pass without accidents: the report of smoke in the building interrupted the celebration.
The resort is built on the previous site of Texoma State Lodge, which was destroyed in 2009.
Currently, the casino provides 170 people with jobs. On top of that, it is estimated that only during the first year will the state earn almost $58 million, which is beyond incredible for both state and casino employees.
Bill Anoatubby, the Governor of Chickasaw Nation, said: “We wanted to create something that would honor the past, something that would be a destination for tourists today, as well as an economic driver for this region.”
The new casino is located near Catfish Bay Marina, and it is built across 61 acres. It possesses ten cabins which tourists love.
The tourism industry is an important part of the state’s economy. As Dan Boren, the Chickasaw Nation Secretary of Commerce, claims, about six million tourists visit Lake Texoma every year, and the gamers and gamblers will be a great addition to that number.
Cody Maynard, Oklahoma House District 21 representative, said: “With all the people and the foot traffic coming in over here, it’s right next to Kingston. That’s going to mean more people eating out at local businesses. More food, restaurants, and even shopping in the area. I really do hope that we can keep this progress going.”
As the Chickasaw Nation predicts, about $168 million will be collected from the casino during the following five years.
The U.S. Department of Interior approved the casino project in October 2020, and that’s when the land has been transferred into a federal trust. Indian Gaming Regulatory Act decided that the land would be used for building the 9,600 square feet casino, which would feature a hotel with 40 rooms and ten rental cabins in total. The casino contains a restaurant, lounge, retail space, various meeting rooms and an outdoor pool. There is also a fitness center and a business center.
The Chickasaw Nation already operates many casinos in Oklahoma, including Riverstar Casino, Treasure Valley Casino, and Gold Mountain Casino.