More than 7 years after Massachusetts legalized gambling and four years after the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) awarded a Region B gaming license to MGM Resorts International, MGM has launched a monster casino in Springfield, the MGM Springfield. This hotel and casino complex opened its doors to the public on 24th August, 2018.
‘Monster’ is the right word to describe this casino, because of its sheer size. Occupying over 2 million square feet, MGM Springfield comes complete with a gaming complex, restaurants, a spa, shopping area, hotel, and a movie theater. The gaming area is spread across 125,000 square feet and has 2,250 slot machines, 120 table games including poker, blackjack, baccarat, and more. There is a high-limit room as well, apart from a poker room with 23 tables. You can read all about it here.
Food Galore and Much More
The casino scores high on all aspects: there are 250 guestrooms and suites, and a bevy of options when it comes to food and drink. For those into casual dining there is Jack’s Lobster Shack at the food court, the South End Market, along with other spots like Wicked Noodles, Bill’s Diner, Hearth Grill, Wine & Cheese, and Gelato & Espresso, along with Starbucks, of course.
Celebrity chefs Michael Mina and Meghan Gill, winners of the 14th season of Hell’s Kitchen are part of the resort, with Mina offering Italian food through Cal Mare and Gill offering his fare through the Chandler Steakhouse. There is the Tap Sports Bar, which comes with a 10-lane bowling alley and arcade. The retail side of things features an apparel store from Indian Motorcycles and others. For those visiting for business reasons the casino boasts of a 34,000 square feet meeting and convention space.
Entertainment Doesn’t End at the Gambling Floor
The casino has pulled out all stops to offer an amazing entertainment experience, apart from the standard gaming. It was not allowed to develop its own standalone performance, but it has managed to get around that hurdle by tying up with two well-known performance venues, Mass Mutual and Symphony Hall, to bring some of the biggest music and entertainment acts to town. Mass Mutual can seat 8,000 guests, while Symphony Hall can seat 2,500.
The design of MGM Springfield is unique; the casino showcases a number of local attractions across its 14-acre property to give visitors the feel of being at a contemporary venue of historic importance instead of being at a big casino in a shopping district. A free bus service – the Loop – offers visitors rides to the numerous attractions in downtown Springfield.
Amazing Attractions on the Property
Attractions on its property include the First Congressional Church and the Massachusetts National Guard Armory. The Armory, which is from the 19th century, is the centerpoint of an outdoor plaza that hosts events like the weekend farmer’s market. In winter it would be converted into an exotic ice skating rink. There is also the Chandler Union Hotel, which is what houses The Chandler Steakhouse by Meghan Gill.
A partnership with Springfield Museums, a collective of 5 museums in Springfield, allows the casino to display items of historic importance through the amazing Cabinet of Curiosities: Springfield Innovations from the Springfield Museums. So don’t be surprised if you walk in and find yourself looking at a 1895 Edison Home Phonograph or a 1925 Telegraphone made in Springfield!
Good News for Springfield
The move to set up shop in Springfield is perfect for MGM, which has 13 casino resorts in Vegas, including the Bellagio and Mandalay Bay, along with properties in other cities, such as the MGM Grand Detroit and Atlantic City’s Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa. This is a city that is easily accessible through different modes of transportation. It is connected to Interstate 91 and quite close to Hartford, Connecticut’s Bradley International Airport.
Springfield is also on the grid and located near other casino cities. There is Connecticut close by, with major casinos including Foxwoods and the Mohegan Sun. Also not too far away is Atlantic City, with gambling hotspots like the Borgata.
For Springfield, the launch of MGM Springfield is big news. As Mayor Domenic Sarno said, “This has helped put us on the map. Cities such as Springfield have gone through some tough times – the economy, things changing and people going to the suburbs and rural areas. … It’s a redefining time, a re-establishment of core urban cities, and MGM has played a pivotal role in that.”
The biggest impact that MGM Springfield has had is on the local economy. A big casino is big business and that translates to jobs all around. The casino put out a post in April 2018 that was considered the biggest employment rush of the time – notifications and listings for more than 1,000 jobs for food and beverage workers. These included cooks and waiters and servers. There are openings for people with other skillsets as well, including electronics technicians, locksmiths, painters, carpenters and more.
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