How Much Can It Cost to Own a Land-based Casino?

Owning a land-based casino comes with its unique set of financial considerations. The journey from acquisition to daily operations entails a myriad of expenses, each playing a crucial role in the casino’s ultimate success.

In this article, we provide a comprehensive breakdown of the costs involved in owning a land-based casino while discussing the factors you should consider before starting this business and the elements that influence the final cost. Buckle up, and let us get started!

Factors to Consider Before Owning a Land-Based Casino

When planning to own a physical gambling house, you must consider a number of factors, lest your investment will be like running a fool’s errand. So what are these factors? Well, they are as listed below:

  • Ensure you have money in your bank account: When budgeting for a land-based casino, significant expenses include acquiring property, paying for construction or renovation, purchasing gaming equipment, covering licensing fees, insuring the property, investing in technology and security systems, and managing staffing, marketing, and advertising costs.
  • Find a perfect location for your casino: For your land-based casino business to boom, its spot has to prime. Aside from building the casino’s buzz from scratch, you have to ensure that its location is not less flashy. For example, take the likes of places like Vegas and Macau. These two are locations known for their glitz, shimmering and glamorous casinos. Thus, such a place would be great for your casino.
  • Get a license and permit: Regardless of whether you run a land-based casino or an online casino with PayID withdrawal, you need a license.This is to show that your operations comply with the regulations and gambling rules from regulatory bodies. The process of obtaining a casino license can be time-consuming, often taking several months to a year. This duration includes the time needed to submit applications, undergo background checks, and await approval from the relevant regulatory bodies. The fees for these licenses are paid to governmental or regulatory authorities. These costs are included in the initial investment and play a vital role in legally establishing your casino operations.

    For instance, according to the American Gaming Association, the initial licensing fee for a land-based casino in New York ranges between $20 million and $50 million. That’s why, as we said in the second point, ensure you have enough money.

  • Put everything into play: Build your playground, get gaming supplies, and invest in interior design, keeping in mind that high rollers seek top-tier gambling experiences. Choose the best equipment, including slot machines like Big Red Pokies that can cost up to $20,000 each. Starting with a modest setup of 50 to 100 slot machines and 10 to 20 table games allows for a high-quality yet manageable beginning. The construction, renovation, and design of a casino can range from a few million to several hundred million dollars, influenced by factors such as size, location, luxury level, and local costs. Interior design, a key factor in attracting patrons, also significantly affects the overall budget, highlighting the importance of balancing cost with quality to create an appealing environment for your clientele.

Hidden Costs of Owning a Land-Based Casino

Owning a casino comes with a mountain of hidden and ongoing expenses. It goes beyond the “glittering gold”. Let us take a look at some of the hidden costs that you may incur:

Casino Staff

They say no man is an island, and true to this, you will need people to help you run the casino business. From dealers, security officers, management, and skilled professionals to housekeeping. However, these people have to be paid. For a moderate-sized casino, the annual budget for personnel could range from $2 million to $10 million. The table below highlights the cost of having casino staff on board:

Costs Breakdown of Hiring Casino Staff

  1. According to ZipRecruiter, the average hourly pay for a casino worker in the US is $18.31 as of January 2024, while the salary range is $8.41 to $42.79 per hour, with most wages falling between $13.22 and $17.55 per hour.
  2. According to a 2022 report by the U.S Bureau of Labour Statistics, the average annual salary of gambling dealers is $34.350, translating to an hourly wage of $16.51, with their salaries ranging from $9.42 to $29.35 per hour.
  3. Casino cashiers charge approximately $11.63 to $22.22 per hour.
  4. For security officers, you can expect to pay roughly $14.9 to $26.74 per hour for each officer.

When launching a new casino, staffing needs vary, but generally, a small to medium-sized establishment requires a comprehensive team. Key personnel include around 20–30 gaming floor staff, 10–15 security guards, 5–10 surveillance team members, 5–10 cashiers, 10–30 hospitality staff, 5–15 maintenance crew, and 5–10 administrative and management staff.

Utility Bills

Annual utility and maintenance costs for a moderate-sized casino, including electricity, water, air conditioning, and repairs, can range from several hundred thousand to a few million dollars, varying based on the casino’s size, location, and operational hours.

Marketing Your Gambling Business

As a casino owner, you will need to invest in marketing campaigns, VIP events and sponsorships. For example, you may spend around $1–$10 million per year in marketing your land-based casino.

Therefore, due to these hidden costs, it is crucial to plan yourself well and do thorough research prior to diving fully into the gambling business. Now, with that said, let us delve into exactly how much it all costs.

The Final Spin: What’s the Exact Cost of Owning a Land-based Casino

As we wind up, we need to address the million-dollar question: what is the final price tag for owning a land-based gambling den? The final cost solemnly depends on the location, size, licensing fee, equipment, marketing and target audience. According to casino experts, while there is no specific cost for owning a physical casino, you can expect to part with as low as $2-5 million for most small casinos with little marketing spend to as high as $20 million for medium-sized and from $20 for the big one. The price ceiling is difficult to name; for example, casino resorts established and developed by the big names in the casino industry spend billions of dollars.

Leave a Reply