The federally-recognized Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation has announced the signing of a deal that is to see it spend approximately $12.5 million in order to bring a casino back to Puerto Rico’s famed Fairmont El San Juan Hotel.
The Connecticut-based tribe used an official Tuesday press release to declare that the agreement with local hospitality investments firm LionGrove will involve the beachfront property in the eastern San Juan suburb of Carolina premiering a 15,000 sq ft casino complete with a range of slots and gaming tables as well as ‘first-class service’ that is destined to complement ‘the resort’s well-appointed luxury accommodations and amenities.’
Already responsible for its home state’s giant Foxwoods Resort Casino, the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation stated that the new alliance, which is to moreover see the pair re-open the 388-room hotel’s Tropicoro entertainments venue, is destined to create around 360 new jobs including some 150 within the coming casino itself. The tribe also detailed that its effort forms part of a comprehensive $137.5 million restoration of the Fairmont El San Juan Hotel that it estimates could end up benefitting Puerto Rico to the tune of approximately $22 million.
Rodney Butler (pictured), Chairman for the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, used the press release to proclaim that the Fairmont El San Juan Hotel first opened in the 1960s featuring ‘classic European style, iconic crystal chandeliers and hand-carved mahogany-paneled walls.’ He asserted that the property soon earned a reputation as ‘one of the most luxurious and sought-after casino destinations in the world’ and played host to a slew of famous entertainers including Frank Sinatra, Paul Anka and Tony Bennett.
Read a statement from Butler…
“Our success and experience with operating Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut will allow us to effectively expand our footprint and bring award-winning gaming experiences to Puerto Rico. We’re teaming up with one of the most sophisticated players in the market. Bringing together our resort experience and expertise with Fairmont El San Juan’s renowned brand, we believe we can bring real economic and employment growth to Puerto Rico. In addition to offering guests a one-of-a-kind luxury resort destination, the development will bring revenues, value and tourism to the area.”
For his part and Andro Nodarse-Leon, Chief Executive Officer for LionGrove, pronounced that the identity of the coming gambling floor for the Fairmont El San Juan is destined to pay homage to the property’s ‘legendary history’ so as to help it gain a reputation for offering ‘the most exciting and innovative casino on the island.’
Nodarse-Leon’s statement read…
“Since acquiring the El San Juan Hotel in 2015, we have been zealously committed stewards of this world-renowned luxury lifestyle hospitality landmark. We completed a $65 million renovation of the El San Juan Hotel in 2017 and subsequently, following Hurricane Maria, a $60 million restoration that led to its rebranding as the Fairmont El San Juan Hotel in January of 2020. Currently, the Fairmont El San Juan Hotel is more accommodating and exciting than ever and with this great partnership we are bringing one of the strongest casino brands in the world to Puerto Rico.”