Canada's Playtime Casino Wasaga Beach held its grand opening on Wednesday and welcomed VIP guests earlier in the day for tours, including Wasaga Beach Mayor Brian Smith and members of the council. The Ontario casino will be open Sunday to Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. and on Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 a.m.
The CA$34.4 million ($25.7 million), 25,000-square foot gaming establishment features a gaming floor with 231 slot machines and 12 e-gaming tables. The building is also equipped with facial recognition surveillance for the gaming floor.
The casino has been in the works since 2012, when the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG) started looking for a host for a casino in the area. By 2018, Gateway Casinos and Entertainment, which also operates Casino Rama, was chosen as the operator and they planned the building on Mosley Street at the roundabout intersection at Lyons Court.
Gateway Casinos and Entertainment spokesperson Robert Mitchell said the operator is focused on making sure there are ways to have fun at Playtime, even without gambling, reports Orillia Matters. Over the last six months, the company has hired people to fill the 140 jobs created for the casino. Mitchell said about 90% of staff are local to the Wasaga Beach area.
The property also features the family-friendly restaurant Match Eatery and Public House, with indoor and outdoor seating and a patio equipped with heaters and a roof to offer wintertime outdoor dining.
As a condition of their license from the Ontario government, all casinos are required to have representation from the private, non-profit organization the Responsible Gambling Council. In Wasaga Beach, service coordinators from the council will be on-site for 15 hours a week.
Gateway Casinos & Entertainment is one of the largest casino entertainment companies in Canada and it operates over 20 gaming facilities across British Columbia, Alberta, and Ontario.