- Associated Press - Thursday, April 17, 2014

ROLAND, Okla. (AP) - A casino in eastern Oklahoma operated by Cherokee Nation Businesses will be replaced with a newer, larger complex featuring a hotel, officials said.

The Journal Record reported Thursday (https://bit.ly/1l7cuDr ) that the new facility in Roland near the Arkansas border will include a six-story, 125-room hotel and an 87,000-square-foot casino accommodating 850 games with a bar, stage and other entertainment options. The existing casino in Roland now has 600 electronic games and six table games.

The new complex will also include convention space, a swimming pool and a smoke shop, Cherokee Nation Business Chief Executive Shawn Slaton told a group of developers and commercial real estate investors Wednesday.

“It’s time to update those facilities,” Slaton said “It’s going to be a state-of-the-art place, something the nation and Oklahoma will be proud of.”

The existing facility at Interstate 40 and State Highway 64 will be demolished once the new complex is built, Slaton said.

“It will allow them to continue to provide top-quality entertainment opportunities,” Slaton said of the improvements. “Hopefully it will become a destination stop for people traveling down I-40.”

The Cherokees are studying retail development options for about 50 acres around the Roland site, Slaton said, along with 300 acres in Sallisaw, where the tribe operates a casino. Slaton also said more construction may occur at Cherokee Nation Entertainment’s flagship Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Tulsa, which is expected to bring in at least 3 million visitors this year.

“Certainly we want to stay on top of the market in the Tulsa community, so I don’t think we’re done yet at Hard Rock,” he said. “As far as what we might be doing in the future, I would say we’re not going to be sitting back.”


Information from: The Journal Record, https://www.journalrecord.com

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