BARRIE, ONT. — Casino Rama Hotel reopened its doors Thursday after nearly 17 months of being closed.
It’s an anticipated step forward for one of Simcoe County’s largest employers.
One hundred employees have been called back to the hotel that will operate at full capacity as each room is treated as a primary residence.
“It’s just part of our grand reopening plan if you like. It’s stage two of our reopening,” says Rob Mitchell from Gateway Casinos Ontario.
“Our ultimate plan is to see the entertainment centre open, but this lets our patrons stay overnight, which is an option they didn’t have before,” Mitchell says.
Even though the hotel was maintained during its closure, the reopening was a big chore, due to repairs and upgrades.
“Thousands of light bulbs had to be replaced, everything from re-starting dishwashers to laundry equipment to all of the computer systems that we rely on for our jobs had to be checked,” says Helen Cooper, General Manager of Hotel Operations at Casino Rama. “Even getting inventory and making sure we have the right PPE in place for our guests and our staff,” she says.
The gaming floor has been open and operating, but there are limits on how many people can be on the gaming floor.
“At any given moment, we can have 1000 people on the gaming floor, but the wrinkle in this is social distancing. With two-metre distancing for players, you can’t really have 50%, so we’ve opted for a cap of 1000,” Mitchell says. “That ensures us the health and safety of our employees and our guests.”
Casino Rama hopes to reopen spa and recreation services by September 1.