Casino Resort Bethlehem, a new casino and entertainment destination being developed by Las Vegas Sands Corp., announced today it plans to open its doors to the public for the first time on Friday, May 22, 2009. The new casino resort will hold its official grand opening with a series of special events on June 9, 2009.
Situated on the former site of the historic Bethlehem Steel plant in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and located approximately 60 minutes from Philadelphia and the northern New Jersey suburbs and 90 minutes from New York City, Sands Bethlehem will debut with 3,000 state-of-the-art slot machines and a variety of entertainment and dining options, including a 24-hour cafe, an authentic Irish pub, a gourmet market place featuring a wide selection of cuisines, and a world-renowned celebrity chef steak house. The property also includes a public parking garage that features 3,400 covered spaces and provides easy and convenient elevator access to the casino floor.
“We are excited to be opening our first property on the east coast and in combining the proud heritage of this historic site with the excitement of casino gaming, live entertainment, and great dining, we will have created the type of unique experience we believe will annually attract millions of visitors from across the region,” said Sheldon G. Adelson, chairman and chief executive officer of Las Vegas Sands Corp. “With its close proximity to New York, Philadelphia, and the northern New Jersey suburbs, we are confident Sands Bethlehem will quickly establish itself as one of the region’s top gaming and entertainment destinations.”
Mr. Adelson said this particular redevelopment of a major Brownfield site could be used as a model for other Brownfield locations across the country. He cited significant tax revenue for state and local communities, the creation of thousands of direct and indirect jobs, and increased tourism as the major benefits of such redevelopment efforts.
“The positive impact of the Sands Bethlehem is already being felt across the region as we continue to hire the more than 1,000 employees we need to operate the property. These direct jobs, and the hundreds of indirect jobs that will be created to provide ancillary support for the property, will hopefully serve as a strong catalyst for local economic growth,” said Sands Bethlehem president Robert DeSalvio. “The site of the Bethlehem Steel plant holds special memories for many local residents, and in honor of those memories we are proud to announce our May 22 opening. At the same time we are excited to be setting in motion an economic engine we believe has the ability to generate long-term growth and prosperity for the entire community.”
DeSalvio said the May 22 opening day is subject to final Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board approval and successful completion of two pre-opening test nights.
The development of Sands Bethlehem also consists of plans for an additional 2,000 slot machines, 200,000 square feet of shopping space for popular retailers and designers, and nearly 50,000 square feet of flexible multi-purpose space, which will allow the property to accommodate meetings, conventions, and a variety of special events.
The resort’s master plan also includes the future opening of a 300-room hotel, with the rooms modeled after those at the company’s Mobil Four-Star rated Palazzo Resort in Las Vegas. In addition the complex will feature a National Museum of Industrial History, SteelStax – an arts and cultural center, and will also serve as the home for the local public broadcasting station, PBS 39 / WLVT.