Will Travelers Make Pilgrimage to Bethlehem?

Despite a stunted economy, Las Vegas Sands Corp. has faith that its new casino and entertainment destination will be a hit when it opens in May in Bethlehem, PA. Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem will open to the public for the first time on Friday, May 22, and hold its official Grand Opening with a series of special events on June 9.

Situated on the former site of the historic Bethlehem Steel plant, and located approximately 60 minutes from Philadelphia and the northern New Jersey suburbs and 90 minutes from New York City, Sands Bethlehem will debut with 3,000 state-of-the-art slot machines and a variety of entertainment and dining options, including a 24-hour CafŽ, an authentic Irish pub, a gourmet marketplace featuring a wide selection of cuisines and a world-renowned celebrity-chef steakhouse.


A rendering of the Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem

The resort’s master plan also includes the future opening of a 300-room hotel, with the rooms modeled after those at the company’s Palazzo Resort in Las Vegas.

“The positive impact of the Sands Bethlehem is already being felt across the region as we continue to hire the more than 1,000 employees we need to operate the property,” said Sands Bethlehem President Robert DeSalvio. “These direct jobs, and the hundreds of indirect jobs that will be created to provide ancillary support for the property, will hopefully serve as a strong catalyst for local economic growth.

“The site of the Bethlehem Steel plant holds special memories for many local residents and in honor of those memories we are proud to announce our May 22 opening. At the same time we are excited to be setting in motion an economic engine we believe has the ability to generate long-term growth and prosperity for the entire community.”

DeSalvio said the May 22 opening day is subject to final Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board approval and successful completion of two pre-opening test nights.

It’s a big move for Sands, placing a new casino in the already saturated Northeast, where Atlantic City, Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun have all been experiencing customer downturn. Still, projects like this have been known to take off and turn some cities around—who would have expected an MGM casino in Detroit to be such a big hit?

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