Poarch Creek Purchase Approved by Pennsylvania Casino

Alabama’s Poarch Band of Creek Indians has received regulatory approval to expand its casino portfolio with the acquisition of Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem, Penn.

The deal has a “total enterprise value” of $ 1.3 billion, according to a statement from the PCI Gaming Authority, which acted as Wind Creek Hospitality on Wednesday. Wind Creek Hospitality (WCH) received approval from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board after approximately 14 months of review.

The move means a significant increase in the tribe’s casino holdings. These previously included Wind Creek casinos in Atmore, Wetumpka and Montgomery, as well as other casino properties in the Caribbean islands of Aruba and Curacao.

“We are pleased with PGCB’s decision and expect the transaction to be completed quickly,” said Jay Dorris, President / CEO of Wind Creek. “I look forward to welcoming all of Sands Bethlehem’s employees to the Wind Creek family.”

Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem will be renamed Wind Creek Bethlehem. Features include a 282-room hotel, a 183,000-square-foot casino floor with 3,000 slot machines and electronic table games, and an event center. Because of its location in the Lehigh Valley, it is approximately 80 miles from New York City.

WCH said it was “an immediate effort” to add a new 300-room hotel to the property. There are also plans to develop a nearby industrial site “with ideas like an adventure and water park that will include a hotel with around 400 rooms”.

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