USA Today’s 10 Best Readers’ Choice Awards have distinguished the Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket, voting the property the best casino in the country outside of Las Vegas. Long dominated by Las Vegas Strip properties, the list is now breaking away with a property that delivers Las Vegas quality outside of Nevada, Foxwoods announced on Tuesday.
The list is dominated by a number of familiar properties, including Atlantic City, Reno, Tucson, Tampa, Temecula and California, and the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville. With over 1,500 commercial casinos operating in the United States, placing first in the list has proven a challenge.
Foxwoods was examined by casino experts C. Douglas Dreisbach, Lisa Robertson-Driedzic and Steve Bourie, factoring a passel of criteria in assessing the overall quality of the venue. However, the final choice rested with readers who have selected Foxwoods as the best casino venue outside of Las Vegas for a second year.
Previously, Foxwoods landed the top spot back in 2018, winning the praise of casino-buffs in the United States. Foxwoods interim CEO and SVP of Resort Operations, Jason Guyot had this to say sharing his enthusiasm:
“I can’t tell you how ecstatic we are. We truly believe that we are the best casino. This is validation for that. We’ve been going through a difficult time in the industry and in the nation. So we’re extremely excited.”
Restarting Operations in Foxwoods Goes Well
Despite the coronavirus pandemic, Foxwoods has been able to make an impression on the crowd and reopen early in June, after two-and-a-half months of shutdown. Foxwoods was forced to furlough over 2,000 employees but the company was quick to bring workers to work.
The news was confirmed by Foxwoods Spokesperson Ali Parisi who said that the company had offered 2,500 people their jobs back, but some 500 have turned down the offer. Guyot acknowledged that the past few months had been hard for everyone, and furloughs were necessary, but Foxwoods had successfully reduced its expenses.
“Revenues are off compared to last year, but we’ve been able to maintain a good margin,” Guyot continued cited by Hartford Courant. The casino has had to limit operational capacity down to 25% and even offers indoor dining and outlet shopping, something that most Las Vegas properties still cannot do.
There are bingo and gambling games across all four casinos owned by the brand and two of them work around the clock seven days a week. The other two, though, work from noon to 2 AM every day of the week.
However, the casino Rainmaker Buffet, poker and keno tables are still non-operational as per health and safety guidelines from the state. What table games are available remain restricted to four players.
As part of additional security checks, the casino installed temperature checks, face masks and there are over 350 hand-sanitizing stations put in place. Foxwoods is even targeting visitors from specific states pre-emptively and requesting a list of criteria to be met before they can be allowed in.