Two Detroit Casinos Announce Plans to Reopen Wednesday

Two Detroit Casinos Announce Plans to Reopen Wednesday
By Lou Monaco

Two of the three commercial casinos in Detroit announced they will be reopening on Wednesday with additional safety measures in place.

The land-based casinos in Detroit were allowed to reopen Monday under a new state order, but MotorCity and MGM Grand posted on social media that they will wait until Wednesday to re-open. MotorCity Casino will be open at 1 p.m., while MGM Grand Detroit will opens its doors at 5 p.m. Greektown Casino has not announced a reopening time.

RELATED: More on Michigan gaming and sports betting

MGM Grand Detroit will have over 1,500 slot and video poker machines immediately available with its BetMGM sportsbook. Table games will be available on Saturday at 8 a.m. The hotel will reopen at a later date.

All can reopen with new limitations in place. Up to six people from the same household are allowed to enter casinos but must stay away from other groups.

For areas without fixed seating, attendance is limited to 20 persons per 1,000 square feet. Food and drinks are not allowed to be sold or consumed, and everyone must be masked at all times. Total occupancy in each room is limited to 100, according to the mandate. The only exception the state makes for this is for stadiums and arenas, which are capped at 250.

The Michigan Gaming Control Board is working on final details to launch online casino games and mobile sports betting in mid January.

Casinos had to Shut Down Again

On Nov. 16, the state closed the three casinos for a second time after coronavirus cases spiked in Michigan and the Midwest. The order lasted three weeks and expired Sunday.

On Dec. 7, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced that the order would be extended another 12 days.

Detroit’s three commercial casinos closed in March because of the coronavirus. They began to reopen on Aug. 5 with strict safety precautions in place, including operating at just 15% capacity and requiring masks and temperature checks.

Michigan also has 24 tribal casinos, but those facilities are not subject to the MDHHS order. About a third did close temporarily, but the others stayed open with new safety guidelines.

New Order Reopens Businesses

Whitmer and state health officials on Dec. 18 presented the latest public health order from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) that allowed for some businesses to reopen. It took effect Monday.

In addition to casinos, other entertainment options such as movie theaters and bowling alleys were eligible to reopen. High schools also were permitted to resume in-person classes on Monday.

But Whitmer and the MDHHS did extend the ban on in-person dining at restaurants through Jan. 15. Bars, night clubs, indoor fitness group classes, water parks and workplaces where the work can be done at home are still to remain closed.



Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media ( in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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