May Encore Gaming Figures Tank

By Josh Resnek

Encore Boston Harbor reported weaker than usual revenues at its Everett complex in May.

The total take for table games and slot machines was down almost $6 million from April – which was a banner month.

In April, Encore took in $63.7 million as compared with May’s $58 million.

The Spring take was not as hearty as the late winter spurt Encore experienced.

Some casino analysts claim inflation could have been the cause of the weaker showing.

Tourist visitation to Boston is not what it used to be. Plane flights have grown expensive as the cost for jet fuel has soared.

Conventions and business meetings have plunged in the aftermath of the Pandemic, when much of that business was simply cancelled out and the casino closed for several months.

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$40 Million “Discount” Haunts Wynn Resorts Land Deal in Court Reversal

By Josh Resnek

Former owners of the land the Encore casino and hotel is built on are getting another chance at recovering $40 million cut off the $75 million purchase price as a result of SJC ruling.

The state’s highest court handed a win Monday to the former owners ruling that a judge had erroneously dismissed a lawsuit they filed against the Massachusetts Gaming Commission in a bid to collect an additional $40 million for the Everett land.

The state Supreme Judicial Court found that the Gaming Commission took “highly unusual” action in 2013 after discovering that a business- man with a criminal record and organized crime ties was suspected of having a hidden interest in FBT Everett Realty LLC, which had negotiated a deal to sell the Everett property to Wynn for $75 million, according to a report in the Boston Globe.

The decision dredges up years of questionable actions, stuttering and half-hearted investigations and the acknowledged effort of a combination of powerful interests to convey the land at a discount to Wynn.

The $40 million reduction in the price of the land is perceived by some as a bonus given to former Wynn Resorts president Stephen Wynn.

Wynn negotiated for the sale of the land with Everett Mayor Carlo DeMaria and the owners of the land, FBT Realty.

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How The Casino License Was Won

By Walter Pavlo

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court issued an Opinion on FBT Everett Realty (FBT) v The Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) which reversed an earlier decision to dismiss the case. The action was originally brought by the land owners of FBT in 2016 after it claimed it was forced to take a $40 million discount on the land, which was originally agreed upon to be sold to Wynn for $75 million. The story behind how that discount came to be and what made FBT sign for the sale of the land for such a loss has remained mostly a mystery. However, FBT’s case may now move forward and answer these questions and more about the inner-workings of how Wynn won the license.

What we all must remind ourselves is that the license for the casino in Everett was a zero sum game for the two bidders for the license, Wynn Resorts and a group of investors behind Suffolk Downs and its gaming partner (Caesar Entertainment and then Mohegan Sun). This was not a battle for a marijuana license or zoning for a building, it was a license to print money. Backed by billions of dollars, the two groups went at each other to win the license and along the way the most interesting of things started to happen, almost as if being orchestrated.

At the beginning, there was almost no doubt that Suffolk Downs would win the license. It had the back of Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, the storied horse track was dying a slow death and a popular, self-made, local entrepreneur Joe O’Donnell was backing the project. Steve Wynn and his team were outsiders, showman, who used the influence of New England Patriot owner and billionaire Robert Kraft to partner on a site in Foxborough. Only, Foxborough wanted nothing to do with Wynn. Suddenly, almost as if it were planned from the start, Wynn touched down on the land in Everett. Within weeks, and fresh from rejection in Foxborough, Everett was a chosen site for Wynn’s casino project.

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Encore Cranking Bigtime With Another Spectacular Revenue Month

By Josh Resnek

Revenues were down by slightly over $1M from March to April at Encore Boston Harbor Hotel and Casino but it was a big month never the less.

Some victories cannot be equated with revenues, and last month, was a big moment for the Encore Hotel being given a five star designation by Forbes Travel.

It was also a stellar revenue month with the largest take in the casino’s short history.

Last month, Encore took in $64.8M in gaming revenues.

An unbelievable $35.1M was bet using slot machines while $29.6 M was bet at table games.

Then came April.

There was a slight tail-off in gross volume, but the take remained unusually high and steady.A report issued this week by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission revealed that April revenues came in at $63.7M, off just $1.1M from the March results.

The breakdown was this: $29.6M in table game revenues and $34.1M in slot revenues.

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Encore Boston Harbor Hotel Receives Five Star Status

A premier king room at Encore Boston Harbor.

By Josh Resnek

Forget about revenue figures – which went through the top last month at the casino.

What really matters – besides the cash – is that Encore Boston Harbor Hotel was named a five star destination by the Forbes Travel Guide.

This is very big medicine in terms of receiving an award for service and the class of the operation.

It denotes the very best in construction, size, furniture, beds, sheets, towels, accessories, amenities, and most all, it calls attention to the services provided by the hotel.

Forbes found nearly all of that to be as good as it gets.

This was the first year Forbes reviewed and ranked Encore.

The property now has the distinction of being the largest Five-Star regional resort casino in North America and the largest resort on the East Coast to be awarded the honor.

“Our short time in Boston has seen unprecedented change, yet our commitment to Five-Star service and our immaculate resort have remained a priority since we opened our doors,” said Jenny Holaday, president of Encore Boston Harbor. “This achievement is a testament to the excellence our employees embody every day. I could not be more proud of this team.”

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