Wind Creek Casino and Resort in Bethlehem, Pa., located about 70 miles from Philadelphia, has submitted paperwork for a sports betting license. An official with the casino said, “We feel this is the perfect time to apply for a sports betting license, while we are shut down. It doesn’t happen in a minute as far as getting a license. We want to use this time as constructively as possible, and when we open up and resume, we will be ready for the expansion.”
The source went on to say, “It was a strategic maneuver, that way we won’t have to devote any time to getting it up and running when we reopen the casino.”
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf ordered all non-essential businesses to close during the pandemic, to slow the spread of the virus. Wind Creek has been closed for the last six weeks, since March 15.
Wind Creek submitted its application to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board in the last week. The board oversees the entire gambling industry in the state, including sports betting.
Wind Creek Asked Gaming Board To Seal Its Financial Information
In a move that is not the norm, Wind Creek requested that the Gaming Control Board keep all of their financial records sealed, citing privacy issues. That is not something that is usually done in the gaming industry.
The casino did not lay out their plan for sports betting, which usually includes projections for revenue and the number of people that will be hired. None of that information was listed in the paperwork.
A source said that could slow the entire process for the casino. The paperwork may be given back to them so they can make adjustments and reveal certain information that is required by the Gaming Control Board.
Wind Creek did not want to explain their position for not revealing the required issues in the application. Previously a spokesperson for the casino said they had planned to have sports betting up and running in the summer of 2020, ahead of the start of the NFL season.
In a January press release, the casino said that their goal was to have sports betting in the casino and a sportsbook to operate sports betting online.
Wind Creek Tabs Betfred To Operate Its Online Sportsbook
A partnership between Wind Creek and Betfred, a sports betting provider, was also announced earlier this year. Betfred will be operating the casino’s online sportsbook.
Wind Creek in Bethlehem opened its doors on May 22, 2009. It was developed and built by the famed Sands Hotel Corporation of Las Vegas. The resort has 302 hotel rooms, and close to 140,000 square feet of gaming space.
The massive complex is located adjacent to a favorite shopping mall in the area, The Outlets At Wind Creek. Wind Creek went through an ownership change in May of 2019, when Wind Creek Hospitality bought the casino from Las Vegas Sands Corp. for $1.3 billion.
Due to that change of ownership, the Bethlehem casino was one of the last ones in the state to apply for a sports betting license. Out of the 12 casinos in Pennsylvania, only Lady Luck Casino Nemacolin in Fayette County has yet to apply for a sports betting license.
Wind Creek is located in Lehigh County, where sports betting was first launched in early March shortly before the lockdown. The Downs at Lehigh County in Hanover Township reported a lot of activity when it first launched and has been offering iGaming during the lockdown.