North Bay Business Journal

Thursday, October 3, 2013, 4:53 pm

A first look inside Rohnert Park casino

Expecting 6,000-plus on opening day


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    Graton Resort and Casino gaming floor with wayfinder sign

    The casino has about 3,000 slot machines and 144 table games. (image credit: Graton Resort)

    ROHNERT PARK — Graton Resort & Casino unveiled the insides of the massive $820 million casino nearing completion.

    Greg Sarris, chairman of owner Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, and representatives from the operator, Las Vegas-based Station Casinos, showed Bay Area media on Wednesday the roughly 3,000 slot machines plus four full-service restaurants and scores of other features spread across the 340,000-square-foot structure on the western edge of Rohnert Park.

    “It’s been a long haul and 10 years in the making,” Mr. Sarris said. “I was curious to see what $820 million got you.”

    “Quality” is what you get for that price, according to Joe Hassan, vice president of operations for Station Casinos.

    “This is a building that is not rivaled in Northern California,” he told reporters.

    The casino is poised to open in just over a month — Nov. 5. Up to 6,000 visitors are expected on opening day.

    Mr. Sarris also highlighted the hiring figures of the casino, which is expected to employ about 2,000 full-time workers. Throughout construction, about 750 union construction workers were employed.

    “It was the first time in a long time in Sonoma County that all of the union halls were empty,” Mr. Sarris said.

    So far, the casino has hired about 1,400 of its workers, from security staff to accountants to training its own squad of card dealers, who will make up about 900 of the new positions, according to Mr. Hassan.

    In addition to the 3,000 slot machines, the casino will also have 144 table games, from Blackjack to Baccarat to Pai Gow Poker. There’s also a separate, plushly appointed poker room with 18 tables.

    The four full-size restaurants each will have entrances from the parking lot. Coming to the casino will be 630 Park Steakhouse, owned and operated by the casino, Daily Grill, M.Y. China and Tony’s of North Beach.

    Complementing the restaurants will be “The Marketplace,” a 500-seat food court with nine options: DK Wings, headed by recent Top Chef winner and Healdsburg restaurateur Douglas Keane; Slice House, by Tony Gemignani; Boathouse Asian Bistro; La Fondita, originally a Santa Rosa taco truck; Petaluma-based Three Twins Ice Cream; Beach Hut Deli; Roadside BBQ; The Habit Burger Grill; and a Starbucks coffee shop.

    The building will have three lounges and a 9,000-square-foot event center.

    More than 15,000 California companies participated in construction, according to Station Casinos. Installed have been 11,000 square yards of custom-woven carpet, 199 chandeliers on the casino floor and 162 over the casino pits.

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    1. October 4, 2013, 9:08 am

      by John W. Stafford

      I am looking forward to see the Graton Resort and Casino opening in November 2013.

      I wish everything to be successful for everyone involved!

    2. October 4, 2013, 4:16 pm

      by Chuck Raye

      Live in Eagle Point Oregon now but spent 30 years with the public safty department in Rohnert Park…Wish all concerned the very best…cant wait to come and spend some time there….wonderful looking casino…..thanks chuck

    3. October 5, 2013, 10:48 am

      by ronnie dawkins

      I would like to be one of the lucky winners at your casino.

    4. October 6, 2013, 1:33 pm

      by Stop Graton Casino

      THE CASINO WILL HAVE AN OVERALL NEGATIVE IMPACT ON OUR LOCAL ECONOMY. “‘…we can expect lower sales tax revenues from sales of taxable goods due to gaming losses taking away discretionary income,’ said Jenkins…(who mentions) statistics from two other California (casino) cities, Temecula and Roseville….(B)oth reported sales tax losses of 19 and 24 percent six or seven years after the casinos opened. (The losses) haven’t tapered off after the casinos opened.” Interview with Ass’t. RP City Mgr. Darryl Jenkins,The Community Voice, August 9, 2013

      Nationwide, in study after study, years of data has shown that for every job a casino creates, the community loses 1.5 jobs. that’s due to the negative impact on local businesses. The city of Rohnert Park estimates that LOCAL BUSINESSES. will lose over $6 million in revenue this year due to casino traffic; people will simply go somewhere else to shop.Local restaurants will not be able to compete with casino restaurants that will not be charging local sales tax. People will start spending their money at the casino instead of at local stores. It all adds up. Read the article on CNN’s web site, “The Harm Casinos Do”. at http://tinyurl.com/n96qxm2

    5. October 31, 2013, 7:32 pm

      by S.DeLucia

      Is the Casino smoke free. Or do you have a Heavy Duty smoke remove all system?

    6. November 5, 2013, 8:53 am

      by Deb Abel

      Do you have smoking areas in your casino?

    7. November 6, 2013, 10:14 am

      by Fred Alexander

      Wow, what an opening. How exciting. Congratulations.

    8. November 21, 2013, 12:25 pm

      by hannah hutchison

      please take it down its ruining my way home!

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