Florida Tribal Casino Expanding Smoking Area Due to Customer Demand

Posted on: May 22, 2024, 01:09h. 

Last updated on: May 22, 2024, 02:58h.

While efforts to extinguish casino smoking linger in state capitals across the country, a tribal casino in Florida is opening a new space where smokers will be allowed to light up and gamble 24 hours a day.

Miccosukee Casino Florida gaming smoking
The Miccosukee Casino & Resort on Miami’s western edge plans to open a casino smoking room this summer. Casino officials say many guests have recently expressed the desire for a dedicated smoking room with gaming machines. (Image: Miccosukee Tribe of Florida)

The Miccosukee Tribe is one of two federally recognized tribes in Florida, along with the much larger Seminole Tribe. The tribe owns and operates the Miccosukee Casino & Resort in Miami at the entrance to the Florida Everglades along US Highway 41/Tamiami Trail.

While the Miccosukee Casino already has a small smoking room with a smattering of slot-like electronic bingo machines near the Cyprus Lounge and M Sphere Rewards players’ lounge, the tribe says this summer it will open a considerably larger dedicated room where tobacco smoking will be allowed.

We value our customers’ feedback and strive to meet their needs,” said Brad Rhines, general manager of the tribal casino. “Many of our guests have requested a new, indoor, dedicated smoking section, and I am proud that we will be unveiling this unique attraction to them very soon.”

Rhines said the smoking space will open this summer. It will feature a “sophisticated design” with an “upscale bar,” he added. A social media post from the tribe on the casino smoking room added that the space will feature 117 gaming machines.

Bingo Only

The Miccosukee Tribe has decided not to enter into a revenue-sharing Class III gaming compact with the state government that would provide the Native American group with the opportunity to operate Las Vegas-style slot machines, live dealer table games, and possibly sports betting at its casinos. The advantage of not entering into a compact is that the Miccosukee Tribe retails 100% of its gaming revenue generated at its tribal gaming properties.

Along with its namesake resort casino, the Miccosukee Tribe opened a gaming plaza in the Everglades off Exit 49 of Interstate 75, aka “Alligator Alley,” in February.

The gaming plaza, called the Little Trail Casino, has 150 electronic bingo machines in a smoke-free environment. The facility is complemented by a gas station and convenience store, 12 Tesla charging stations, a Dunkin’, and a café.

At Miccosukee Casino & Resort, the tribe’s gaming space includes nearly 1,800 electronic bingo machines with a bingo hall and 20-table poker room. The resort includes 302 hotel rooms, four dining options, events space, live entertainment, and access to the tribe’s nearby 27-hole golf facility. The Miccosukee Casino also offers a tobacco shop directly on the casino floor.  

Tribal Casino Smoking

Florida’s Clean Air Act prohibits indoor smoking inside all enclosed workplaces.

However, since the Miccosukee Casino and the six brick-and-mortar casinos run by the Seminoles are located on sovereign Indian lands and are tribal enterprises, the tribes are free to dictate their own rules on indoor tobacco use.

Along with the Miccosukees, the Seminoles take advantage of their smoking privileges. Smoking is allowed in designated areas of the casino floors at Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood, Seminole Hard Rock Tampa, Seminole Coconut Creek, Seminole Classic Hollywood, Seminole Immokalee, and Seminole Brighton.