To say that the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, is a money maker would be an understatement. Even amid flattened buildings and construction workers milling about as it prepares for its second hotel to open in 2019, at $579 million, the property hauled in more for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2016, than did South Florida’s eight pari-mutuel casinos earn combined.
The Seminole Tribe of Florida-owned and operated property offers a hotel and banked card games such as blackjack and other card games, whereas the state’s racetrack casinos do not.
In early July, the Seminole Tribe and the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation reached an agreement that will see the tribe continue its monthly revenue sharing payments to the state in return for the state’s enforcement of a judge’s ruling that allows it to continue to operate blackjack and other banked card games at its casinos for 13 more years.
Per-casino revenue figures are not required to be released by the Seminole Tribe, however, the figures are able to be computed by cross-matching two state documents, reports the Miami Herald.
According to the news agency, those computed figures show just how big the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa’s numbers are. At $967 million, the racetracks in west-central Florida, which can’t offer slots, can’t compete with the Tampa casino. Next up was the Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood, followed by Seminole Coconut Creek at $383 million.
Not to be outdone, even though the Seminole Classic Casino on North State Road 7 has less than half the gaming than its big brother on 1 Seminole Way does, it still managed to surpass the gambling revenues at all of the racetrack casinos in South Florida, according to the news agency. The “other” Hollywood casino took in $163 million while the Isle Casino Racing Pompano Park was at the top of South Florida’s racinos with $143 million from slot machines and $10 million from poker.
Broward and Miami-Dade’s eight dog tracks, horse tracks and jai-alai frontons came close to the Seminole Hard Rock in the year ending 2016 for slots and poker, with $537 million and and $41 million respectively, for a total of $578 million. According to the Miami Herald, they were up by $15 million for the recently ended fiscal year.
In 2004, the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood opened, and a few months later the adjacent Seminole Paradise with its restaurants, bars and shops followed. This spring, however, after it announced plans for a second, iconic guitar-shaped hotel and more gaming, they began demolishing that area.
According to the news agency, dog and horse track and jai-alai fronton owners say they’re burdened with their pari-mutuel side, which is on a downward slope. In addition to other fees, the owners are also responsible for a 35 percent slot revenue tax. An effort to reduce the slot tax by 10 percent and to add blackjack to the racetrack casino’s offerings failed earlier this year when the bill died in the Florida Legislature.