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Update on Margaritaville Casino in Biloxi

May 7th, 2009

The Margaritaville Casino that was announced in 2007 is still on hold but the backers are still committed to the project:

“The core of Margaritaville is going to be and what we announced is still there,” Payne said in an interview with Biloxi television station WLOX on Wednesday during the Southern Gaming Summit.

Las Vegas-based Harrah’s announced the $700 million project in 2007. Buffett, a Pascagoula, Miss., native known for his lazy-day beach songs such as “Margaritaville” and “Cheeseburger in Paradise,” was one of the resort’s backers.

The project had been expected to be finished in early 2010 but was put on hold last year. Payne has no idea when construction may resume.

“So to your question about time frame, we just have to wait and see.”

“Unfortunately we’ve had to downsize the business, as many have in the Biloxi market to match the staffing levels to the volumes we now see,” Payne said.

Payne said Harrah’s remains committed to its Biloxi resort, and to the people who work there.

“There’s still a great opportunity to build a world class facility there,” said Payne. “The question is when do the markets open. When is the right time to do it?”

“We love the project. We love the location. It’s a matter of what are the new financing for it. And we continue to work on that.”

Tagged in Business Empire, Casinos