By William Swaim / Wyandotte Nation
Over the next year, the Wyandotte Nation Casino will undergo an extensive expansion and redesign to deliver an experience for patrons like no other in the region.
“We’ll offer things no one else in the area has,” said WNC General Manager Gary Johnson. “It gives us the ability to do the things we always wanted to do, but didn’t have the space to do it in.”
A groundbreaking ceremony was held Monday, Nov. 4, to kick the project off.
The$7 million phase one renovation will give the casino a very modern and contemporary look, and expand it by 25,000 square feet to make room for new features such as a club, VIP lounge, a four-lane bowling alley, rooms for private parties, a billiards and darts area, and entertainment venue that will seat around 500 people. The master project overall is estimated at $30 million for all phases.
“I think what we tried to accomplish when we set out on this project was something different from an entertainment perspective than what any of our competitors had,” said Wyandotte Tribe of Oklahoma (WTOK) CEO Kelly Carpino. Wyandotte Tribe of Oklahoma is the Wyandotte Nation’s federally chartered corporation and drives economic development for the Tribe.
“Whether it is a band, a concert, a comedian or whatever we choose – we wanted to create an experience where people can have more of a social gathering spot – a place where they could come for a night of fun.”
The entertainment venue will be available for large and small events, banquets, private parties and business meetings. Johnson said they plan to attract local, regional and national talent.
The interior of the casino will be redesigned and feature a new floor layout with expanded area for gaming.
In a highly competitive market, Wyandotte Nation Chief Billy Friend said it is important to offer entertainment that sets the casino apart.
“When the team sat down and really got creative and came up with this project, we fell in love with it. We’re very excited about it. We are offering something different in the market we are in,” the Chief said. “Most people who aren’t from this area don’t understand how competitive it is. This sets us apart.”
Chief Friend said most expansions in this area have been on the hotel side or the gaming side of things. He said this project isn’t really focused on a gaming expansion, but more on providing another entertainment option for those who may not necessarily be into gaming, but maybe “want to come hear a band, dance or maybe even bowl a few games.”
Chief Friend said the expansion will also create 30-40 more jobs in the area.
In addition to the other new features, the Twin Bridges Restaurant will be revamped with a contemporary look, nearly double in size and will include a martini bar, private dining and a new menu.
The Deli will also be moved with a new, larger dining area for guests.
The exterior will also feature a new façade as part of the overall project.
The project is expected to be completed in a 12-month timeframe. Crossland Construction Company, Inc. will handle the construction on the project. Crossland built the casino in 2007. The WorthGroup are the architects for the project.
The casino, located at 100 Jackpot Place, will remain open throughout the renovation. Areas of the casino will be closed off during the construction.
About the Wyandotte Nation
The Wyandotte Nation is a federally recognized Native American tribe headquartered in Wyandotte, Okla. The Tribe has more than 5,000 tribal members nationwide. The Wyandotte Nation was instrumental in the founding of Detroit, Mich., and Kansas City, Kansas. At one time Kansas City was named Wyandotte City. The Wyandotte Tribe of Oklahoma (WTOK) is the Wyandotte Nation’s federally chartered corporation and drives economic development for the Tribe. The WTOK business enterprises include telecommunications, IT, food service, precision manufacturing, and the entertainment industry, including the Wyandotte Nation Casino. The Tribe’s economic development supports various programs for tribal citizens, including healthcare, housing, and education programs.
About Crossland Construction Company, Inc.
Crossland Construction Company, Inc. is a leader in the construction industry, providing a wide-range of services including general contracting, pre-construction, construction management, design-build delivery, sustainable/LEED expertise, and more. Crossland is among the nation’s top general contractors.
For more information: www.crosslandconstruction.com
WorthGroup architects are recognized as one of the top design firms in entertainment. WorthGroup’s award-winning designers have created some of the most notable facilities in the gaming and hospitality industries.
For more information: http://www.worthgroup.com/