For major casino operators in the US, now is an extremely busy time. With states starting to relax stay at home orders and regulations involving business closings, casinos have been given the opportunity to reopen. For operators like MGM Resorts, this means getting their major gaming facilities back in working order. The brand just announced they plan on opening the National Harbor in Maryland and the Borgata in Atlantic City just one week apart.
MGM Resorts International operates several casinos in the US. These two venues are located on the east coast and big earners for the brand. Today, MGM stated that they will be reopening the MGM National Harbor this Monday, which is just over a week after Maryland officials ended the three month shut down for the gaming industry.
On July 6, the company will be reopening the Borgata, following the July 2 date, when Governor Phil Murphy officially stated that casinos can reopen. For the Borgata, the casino will be hosting an invitation only event before the public reopening takes place on the 6th.
The Borgata will have to follow strict guidelines upon reopening, including staying with 25% of total occupancy. Anyone who enters the casino must wear a mask, including employees and guests. This is a different approach than other states and might cause issues among players who don’t want to wear a mask.
The Maryland facility will also hold an invitation only event before their public reopening. The property will be limited as to what they can offer in the beginning by way of amenities. Of course, this will change as time goes by.
Moving Ahead During COVID-19
MGM Resorts International has already reopened five casinos in Las Vegas, with two more set to open on the 1st of July. They also have opened properties in Mississippi and in Ohio. It is unclear as to when the Empire City Casino in New York or the MGM Springfield in Massachusetts will be reopened.
The company has had to review guidelines on a federal level as well as state level in order to meet requirements to reopen their casinos across the United States. The virus is found in every state, but some have higher cases than others, in certain areas in particular. It is always essential for MGM as well as other operators to follow health and safety guidelines to keep their employees and guests safe.
The capacity numbers vary from state to state as well as restrictions regarding face masks. For social distancing, the terms seem to be the same. Casinos across the US have social distancing protocols in place, and sometimes, even Plexiglass to create a barrier between employees and guests.
We shall watch over the coming weeks as more casinos reopen just how they fare and if things remain the same or change based on how Covid-19 develops. If there is a resurgence of the virus, it could be that casinos are forced to create more regulations or even close down again. Only time will tell just what will happen in the industry and how they respond.