Rhode Island Casinos Rebranded, Bally’s Lincoln Resort Details $100M Expansion

Posted on: September 17, 2021, 08:14h. 

Last updated on: September 17, 2021, 12:55h.

The two Rhode Island casinos in Lincoln and Tiverton are adding the Bally’s brand to their names.

Rhode Island casinos Twin River Bally's IGT
Rhode Island Gov. Dan McKeen addresses a crowd at the groundbreaking of Bally’s Twin River Lincoln Casino Resort’s $100 million expansion on September 16, 2021. Bally’s holds a monopoly on casino gambling in Rhode Island. (Image: WJAT)

The Bally’s Corporation is the newly formed, Rhode Island-headquartered entity created from Twin River Worldwide Holdings’ 2020 acquisition of the iconic Bally’s casino moniker from Caesars Entertainment. It held a ceremonial groundbreaking yesterday on its $100 million expansion in Lincoln.

Today’s ceremony marks the beginning of our $100 million investment in the state of Rhode Island,” declared Paul Juliano, vice president of operations for Bally’s Corporation.

The new business group is lending its identity to both of its Rhode Island casinos. The properties are being rebranded as Bally’s Twin River Lincoln Casino Resort and Bally’s Tiverton Casino & Hotel.

“Undoubtedly, the combined improvements we will make in our facilities and in our customer offerings will well-position our Rhode Island properties to continue to play a key role in the economic prosperity of our state,” Juliano added.

Foes to Friends

Bally’s, then still Twin River Worldwide Holdings, in early 2020 announced a resolution in its long fight with International Game Technology (IGT). The spat revolved around state law that gave IGT the right to place its gaming machines on the Rhode Island casino floors. Twin River said IGT machines performed poorly, and cost the casinos in lost revenue.

Twin River and IGT agreed to settle their differences by way of a state bill that was signed by Rhode Island Gov. Dan McKee (D) in June.

The enacted law affords IGT exclusive control of operating the state lottery for the next 20 years. That’s in exchange for a one-time $27 million upfront payment. IGT must also invest $155 million in technological upgrades, and maintain a state workforce of at least 1,100 people.

Bally’s Corporation retains a 20-year monopoly on casino gambling inside the state in exchange for a $100 million expansion investment at its Lincoln resort.

The legislation McKeen signed additionally results in IGT and Bally’s jointly forming a new entity. The lottery and gaming manufacturer holds a 60 percent ownership stake, while Bally’s retains the remaining 40 percent.

The new business will become the exclusive provider of video lottery terminals (VLTs), which mimic slot machines, at the two Bally’s casinos in Rhode Island. The entity identity will be announced in early 2022.

Expansion Plans

The $100 million required investment to Bally’s Twin River Lincoln Casino Resort is headlined by 40,000 square feet of new gaming space.

The first-floor expansion will allow the second-floor casino to come downstairs to place all gaming machines and table games on one floor. The second-floor space currently housing gaming will be renovated into an entertainment venue.

The development also includes a 14,000-square-foot Korean spa attached to the Bally’s Lincoln hotel. Investments will additionally include improved air circulation throughout the resort, upgraded lighting, and better separation between smoking and nonsmoking gaming areas.

Bally’s did not say how many permanent new positions the casino expansion would create. The $100 million undertaking is projected to take 12-14 months to complete.