Having worked on the Pickering Casino Resort for a few years now, Great Canadian Gaming Corporation is proud to announce the casino portion of the property is opening today. At 10:00 a.m. EST, the casino floor will welcome guests, with reduced occupancy levels in place.
As COVID-19 restrictions are loosened in Canada, the new casino is allowed to open for the first time ever. The first phase includes the casino opening the gaming floor, along with food and beverage options. The casino will have social distancing in place to protect players and employees.
The casino is home to 2,400 slots along with 100 table games. Along with the live table games, the casino offers live dealer stadium gaming machines. There are 140 of these terminals spread throughout the property.
Great Canadian Gaming Corporation Interim Chief Executive Officer, Terrance Doyle, commented that the opening of the casino is another step towards the company’s recovery process from the COVID-19 pandemic.
At least 600 jobs are created from the first phase, and there are more to come in the future as the property opens at full capacity. Doyle stated further:
“This will be Great Canadian’s 25th property currently operating in Canada and the first casino resort opened in Ontario in 16 years, and I would like to thank all the hard work invested by our team, our contractors, and other important stakeholders who have helped us achieve this incredible milestone.”
The Pickering Casino Resort opens just a few weeks after COVID-19 restrictions began to loosen across provinces of Canada. As the number of cases has lowered and there are more vaccinations taking place, officials felt comfortable allowing players to return to venues.
Reopening Process in Ontario
The new casino is located in Ontario, a province that started welcoming casino reopenings back in mid-July. On July 16, Ontario started Step Three of the COVID Reopening Plan, just a few weeks after Step Two began.
The province was able to surpass benchmarks set to move on to the next phase. In Phase Three, casinos were allowed to reopen at 50% capacity. While this is not 100%, it was good news for casinos in the province as facilities were shut down for several months.
Unlike the US, where vaccinations were prevalent, Canada was unable to provide enough vaccines to reopen casinos as quickly. Health resources and hospitals were at capacity for quite some time, which left businesses like casinos closed until it was safe to reopen.
Great Canadian owns more than 10 properties in Ontario and since the new phase has begun, the company has been able to reopen properties and welcome guests.