Saks Wants to Open a Casino on Top Floors of Flagship NYC Location
Casino plans are popping up all around the New York City area. Interest has intensified after the recent release of the New York State Gaming Commission’s Request for Application for three downstate New York gaming licenses. Each license will cost at least $500 million.
One possible location could be Times Square, the other at the Nassau Coliseum just a few miles east of NYC. There are also proposals for casinos at Hudson Yards, another on First Avenue between 38th and 40th Streets near United Nations, a project at Citi Field back by NY Mets owner, and one at Coney Island. And now there’s also a proposed location at Saks Fifth Avenue’s flagship store in Manhattan.
Saks Fifth Avenue has confirmed plans to bid for a casino license on the top floors at its location on Fifth Avenue. The luxury department store is located between East 49th and East 50th streets, next to St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
But don’t expect any penny slots or low-stakes video poker there. The company wants to keep its luxury theme going, aiming to open a high-end casino that will target high rollers. The company says that a high-end operation on their building’s higher floors would limit the risk of gambling addiction for middle- or working-class people.
The area is expected to include the top three floors of the store, comprising a collective 200,000 square feet, and the casino would include a separate lobby from the department store, according to the New York Times, which first reported the bid.
The renderings show stylishly dressed guests, seated at roulette tables, posh bars and upholstered chairs, clinking cocktails. They enter the building via a separate entrance on a red carpet that extends out onto the sidewalk and opens into a vast lobby area with multiple chandeliers and plush decorative rugs.
The winners of the casino licenses are expected to be announced later this year. The board will consider job creation potential and economic growth. Voters passed legislation that allowed casinos to open in the state in 2013. But at first it allowed for only four casino licenses upstate.