The Queen Baton Rouge Opens To Public After $85M Renovation
The Queen Baton Rouge casino’s grand opening in Baton Rouge, Louisiana signifies the city’s first land-based casino, a shift from the previous riverboat venues in the city.
The Queen, situated at the former Hollywood Casino location, was moved from its original position on the Mississippi River to a land-based location with 100,000 square feet of space.
With the $85 million Louisiana brick & mortar casino project now complete, gamblers can try more than 700 slot machines and 18 table games, including blackjack, craps, roulette, and pai gow poker. For those who prefer sports betting, the casino has partnered with DraftKings to offer a sportsbook.
“The Hollywood is out. The Queen Baton Rouge is in. It’s an $85 million renovation. It’s absolutely stunning,” said Queen Baton Rouge General Manager Matthew Shehadi, speaking to local news outlet BRProud.
“I’m really excited about how it’s all come together. It’s a beautiful property,” said Terry Downey, president and CEO of Queen Gaming.
The Queen boasts several dining options, including Big Chicken, a fried chicken restaurant backed by basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal. It will be the first of the iconic baller’s chain in Louisiana.
Another highlight is Restaurant 1717, which features an upper level named “The Loft.” Casino managers highlighted the sunset views of Baton Rouge from its floor to ceiling windows and smoking patio.
Long Road to Land
The grand opening concluded with a unique drone show, the first of its kind for Baton Rouge, visible throughout the city and synchronized to a playlist aired on local radio stations.
The Queen Baton Rouge officially opened its doors to the public at 9 p.m., with former LSU Tiger and NFL quarterback Matt Flynn leading a ribbon-cutting ceremony and placing the ceremonial first bet inside the DraftKings Sportsbook.
Queen Baton Rouge Casino is owned by Queen Casino, who purchased the former riverboat operation from Caesars Entertainment in 2020. The previous Hollywood Casino Baton Rouge riverboat casino first opened in 1994 under the Belle Rouge name.
Queen Casino also operates the local Belle of Baton Rouge and Casino Queen Marquette in Iowa. It is reportedly finalizing a $100 million redevelopment of the Belle of Baton Rouge casino, set to debut next year.
The Queen Baton Rouge is not the only U.S. riverboat casino finally moving inland this year. Penn Entertainment’s two Illinois casinos will be going land-based within the next year, after May saw regulatory approval for the moves.