Northwest Indiana’s four casinos reported $93 million in revenues in June, a 23% growth over the same month in 2019, with the new Hard Rock Northern Indiana more than doubling the amount of revenue the two Majestic Star Casinos it replaced took in last June. Horseshoe Hammond and Ameristar also showed year-over-year revenue increases while Blue Chip in Michigan City declined slightly.
Horseshoe Hammond once again led the region, with $34.5 million in revenues compared to $32.4 million the previous June, a 6.5% increase, according to the monthly report issued Monday by the Indiana Gaming Commission. Hard Rock Northern Indiana, which opened on May 14, came in second, with $25.9 million in revenues compared to $12.1 million brought in by the Majestic Star Casinos, a 114% jump. Ameristar in East Chicago took in $21.6 million versus $18 million, a 20% hike, and Blue Chip in Michigan City brought in $11 million compared to $13 million, a 15% drop.
Shannon McKellar, VP marketing at Horseshoe Hammond, said June was another busy month for the gaming industry, with the Hammond casino seeing strong volumes in both slots and tables, Chicago Tribune reports. ”We continue to see our most loyal guests, Caesars Rewards members, make return visits and there is strong interest in taking advantage of travel benefits. Reservations for summer travel to various Caesars Rewards resorts continue to ramp up, including Las Vegas, Lake Tahoe and Atlantic City,” McKellar said.
Hard Rock was unable to sustain the high revenue numbers it generated in its first two weeks, the last two weeks of May, when it opened and brought in $20.6 million. However, the casino’s president, Matthew Schuffert, said he was very pleased with June’s results, noting that it is usually a challenging month for Region casinos.
"Many table games customers left Hard Rock extremely happy in June," Schuffert said. "But to essentially be the highest table games producing casino in the state in terms of volume, in only our first full month of operation, is a testament to the product and the team we have assembled at Hard Rock."
In fact, Hard Rock led the state with $17.8 million in baccarat play in June compared to $13.7 million at the Horseshoe. Hard Rock was a close second to the Horseshoe last month for wagers on blackjack, craps and roulette, according to the IGC.
On slots, the Horseshoe topped Indiana's 12 casinos with $251.2 million in slot play and $25.4 million in slot win in June, followed by Indiana Grand near Indianapolis ($222.1 million/$23.4 million), and the Hard Rock ($201.7 million/$20.5 million). The Horseshoe also has more operational slot machines (1,969) than any other casino in the state as some slot machines in Indiana casinos remain turned off to promote social distancing amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Statewide, casino win totaled $230.9 million in June, a 4.5% increase compared to May, and 120% more than June 2020 when casinos only were open half the month due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Separately, IGC data show Hoosiers wagered $246.3 million on sporting events in June, or about the same as Indiana's $254.4 million May sports wagering handle. Jessica Welman, an analyst for PlayIndiana.com, said it's no surprise sports wagering was relatively stagnant last month after the Indiana Pacers made an early exit from the NBA playoffs and there were no major events, such as the Indianapolis 500 auto race, to attract new wagers.
"Overall, Indiana's sportsbooks have performed well over the last three months compared with other Midwestern states, which have so far experienced steeper declines in betting volume," Welman said.
According to the IGC, Hoosiers wagered a total of $2.9 billion on sporting events between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.
That's more than the approximately $1.1 billion in annual sales for the Hoosier Lottery, but significantly less than the total amount wagered at slot machines and table games at state-regulated Indiana casinos, which totaled nearly $1.9 billion in June alone.