A 2008 ballot initiative limited Missouri gaming licenses to 13. The closing of President Casino in St. Louis in July 2010 started a competition for this precious license, won by Isle of Capri Gaming. The company recently opened Isle Casino Cape Girardeau on the Mississippi River in the boot heel of the state, between two major gaming markets in St. Louis and Tunica.
Isle Casino Cape Girardeau offers 21 table games, 1,000 slot machines and a seven-table poker room that spreads limit and no-limit hold’em, pot-limit Omaha and Omaha/8.
In May, Penn National Gaming announced it had reached an agreement to purchase Harrah’s St. Louis from Caesars Entertainment. In November the deal completed and Hollywood Casino St. Louis opened its doors. Retaining most of the existing staff, the major effort of converting the casino went fairly smoothly. Areas were closed and converted in a rolling fashion, keeping as much open as possible.
Penn National Gaming has announced Hollywood Casino St. Louis will be a stop on its new Hollywood Poker Open tour. A St. Louis stop in the spring (date TBD) will join events in Lawrenceburg, Ind., Las Vegas, Charles Town, W.V. and Columbus, Ohio. These regional tournaments will lead to the HPO Championship at the M Resort in Las Vegas.
— Don Matusofsky is Ante Up’s Missouri Ambassador. Email him at email@example.com.