Casinos could prove costly to Miami’s thriving tourism industry

Miami /
Jan.January 13, 2012 02:15 PM

A major selling point for the developers lobbying to bring casino resorts to downtown Miami is the boost it would provide to hotels, restaurants and other staples of the tourism industry.

But the Miami Herald questions whether the costs of legalizing gambling are really worth whatever benefit it may offer to a vacation industry that just posted its best year ever despite the recession. Miami hotel room revenue rose 14 percent in 2011, the third largest gain in the nation, and hotel tax revenue skyrocketed 29 percent even after a strong 2010.

The Herald said the gambling industry could double the supply of hotel rooms in the city, and while the casino resorts are guaranteed good revenue from gamblers, their arrival places downward pressure on prices for existing hotels.

“If you are in the gaming business and the rooms business, the gaming business wins and you give the rooms away,’’ said Michael Depatie, CEO of Kimpton Hotels, which runs the 411-room Epic hotel about 10 blocks from the proposed Sands site. “That is a threat to any hotel.”

Proponents of Genting and Las Vegas Sands’ plans argue that gambling is the one component lacking in Miami’s bid to become the top convention destination and covet the jobs the developers promise. For example, Genting said its plan for Restorts World Miami would provide for 19,000 jobs, which on its own would shrink the county’s unemployment rate to 8.8 percent from 10.2 percent under current conditions, according to the Herald. [Miami Herald]


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Fontainebleau Miami Beach, Jeffrey Soffer and former President Donald Trump (Ebyabe/Wikipedia, Getty, iStock)
Gambling portability a no-go in Florida this year for Jeffrey Soffer, Trump
Gambling portability a no-go in Florida this year for Jeffrey Soffer, Trump
Commissioner Ken Russell and West Flagler principal Isadore Havenick (Photos via Getty, iStock, Zoom)
Miami commission deals Edgewater jai alai site a winning hand
Miami commission deals Edgewater jai alai site a winning hand
A rendering of the monorail
Miami-Dade approves interim contract for monorail to Miami Beach
Miami-Dade approves interim contract for monorail to Miami Beach
Norman Braman, Jorge Perez and Magic City Jai Alai (Credit: Google Maps, Braman by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images; jai alai player via Wikimedia Commons)
Norman Braman, Jorge Perez and homeowner groups sue to stop Edgewater jai alai facility
Norman Braman, Jorge Perez and homeowner groups sue to stop Edgewater jai alai facility
Hyde Beach House Resort & Residences, Carlos Rosso and Drew Sims
Sotherly closes on acquisition of Hyde Beach House hotel space
Sotherly closes on acquisition of Hyde Beach House hotel space
Daniel Rutois and Hyde Resort and Residences
Hyde Resort & Residences association strikes back at Sotherly Hotels
Hyde Resort & Residences association strikes back at Sotherly Hotels
Daniel Rutois and Hyde Resort and Residences
Sotherly Hotels sues Hyde Resort & Residences association president
Sotherly Hotels sues Hyde Resort & Residences association president
With SoFla condo sales down, developers sweeten pot for buyers and brokers
With SoFla condo sales down, developers sweeten pot for buyers and brokers
With SoFla condo sales down, developers sweeten pot for buyers and brokers
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...