Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation to reopen casino at Fairmont El San Juan
The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation, operators of the famed Foxwoods Casino in Mashantucket, CT, has landed a concession agreement to reopen the casino at the iconic Fairmont El San Juan hotel, this media outlet learned.
The announcement is scheduled to take place next week, according to a media notice released Wednesday night. Gov. Pedro Pierluisi is expected to participate in the event which will take place at the hotel.
The sprawling casino, which served as the backdrop for many television and film productions, has been closed since 2016.
When the property reopened in February 2017 — following a $60 million renovation — the 7,500 square-foot casino remained shut with no reopening date in sight. That year, the hotel sustained damage from Hurricanes Irma and María, while general tourism business was subsequently affected by the earthquakes of 2020 and the COVID-19 pandemic, which put plans for it on hold.
This media outlet learned that the new casino will be twice its original size and is expected to open by year’s end, under a new name.
In an interview with this media outlet late last year, Fairmont El San Juan General Manager Kelley Cosgrove confirmed that negotiations were underway to identify an operator for the casino. Fairmont took over the management of the 338-room El San Juan Hotel in Isla Verde in November 2019 through an agreement with the property owners, ESJ Resort LLC.
The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation entered the betting business in 1986, when it opened a high-stakes bingo hall in CT.
“Today Foxwoods comprises six casinos that offer more than 6,200 slot machines and an incredible 380 tables for 17 different types of table games, including 100 for poker. There’s a luxurious, high-tech Race Book, as well as the world’s largest Bingo Hall,” the tribal nation states on its website.
Its portfolio of enterprises also includes hotels, a spa, a museum, and health benefits services, all in Mashantucket, CT.