BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - It's been a busy year in the coast casino industry. Gaming properties have made major investments in 2015. Most of the activity has centered on adding hotel rooms and renovating existing rooms. Harrah's Gulf Coast in Biloxi has unveiled an ambitious plan to breathe new life into their hotel.
"We currently have 494 rooms. We'll be redoing all of them, all the corridors, elevator landings, and the front desk. It's a full hotel makeover," said General Manager Jonathan Jones. "We'll be going from 494 rooms to 499 rooms."
It's a $14 million investment with work beginning in mid-November. Harrah's parent company, Caesar's Entertainment, concluded it's time to step up in the competitive coast casino environment.
"Hotel rooms in this market have seen a lot of investment, so it's our turn to redo our rooms and give our guests a complete experience," said Jones.
The renovation will put an emphasis on creating contemporary rooms that reflect a decor that is consistent with Harrah's properties around the country.
Beyond the hotel and casino, the Great Lawn at Harrah's has turned into a desirable addition to the big picture. A successful summer concert series, with more events on the menu, means there is synergy between Harrah's interest on the south and north sides of Highway 90.
"We saw increased visitation concert by concert. We saw a lot of new faces. People started across the street and came into our bars, restaurants, and casino," according to Jones.
Casino revenue on the coast has shown positive growth in recent months and Harrah's believes the industry is getting stronger, which means they expect a return on capital investment.
"We're up this year, not only Harrah's, but around the region. We're bullish on this market. We feel very excited about it," said Jones.
Harrah's expects to complete the upgrade by April of 2016.