NICHOLS — Tioga Downs has a new hotel and events center that it hopes will draw plenty of visitors to the racing, casino gaming, and entertainment complex in Nichols in Tioga County.
The hotel started welcoming guests on Nov. 6. New York Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul, state and local dignitaries, and 200 guests commemorated the hotel’s formal opening at a Dec. 1 ribbon-cutting ceremony and reception.
“We now have a convenient and comfortable place for guests of all ages to stay and enjoy the many wonderful amenities the property has to offer. This will make Tioga Downs an even bigger draw for weddings, parties, and conferences, bring visitors and tourism to Tioga County, and most importantly, ensure quality jobs for the hard-working men and women in the Southern Tier,” Jeff Gural, chairman of American Racing and Entertainment LLC, said in a news release.
The new hotel boasts 161 rooms and spans six floors, Tioga Downs said. The hotel also includes a new events center that can accommodate up to 400 guests for special occasions such as weddings and banquets.
Besides the hotel, Tioga Downs also used the occasion to introduce additional amenities that included the AgeLess spa, fitness center, two rooftop decks, and P.J. Clarke’s restaurant.
The venue and its new amenities will create “hundreds” of new jobs, bringing the total number of Tioga Downs’ employees to about 700, according to the release.
Tioga Downs broke ground on the hotel project in September 2016, shortly after the state awarded Tioga Downs a full gaming license.
Tioga Downs opened its casino in December of last year and then launched its newly expanded gaming floor in February 2017.
The Tioga Downs casino steadily generated between $5.4 million and nearly $6 million in gross gaming revenue (GGR) per month between April and October, according to the latest data from the New York State Gaming Commission. Tioga Downs’ average monthly GGR during that period was $5.75 million.
Now it bears watching to see if the casino’s revenue increases in the coming months following the addition of the hotel.