Wynn Resorts wins Boston gambling license with $1.6B plan for waterfront casino in Everett

Associated Press  BOSTON (CBS/AP) – A majority of Massachusetts state gaming commissioners said Tuesday they’d prefer Wynn Resorts’ plan for a resort casino in Everett.

Three of the four state commissioners said they’d prefer to give the Boston-area license to Wynn over competitor Mohegan Sun, which planned a casino at the Suffolk Downs horse racing track in Revere.

The commissioners completed their review of conditions for the operator in a hearing this morning. Commissioner Enrique Zuniga said he believed Wynn would fare better in a competitive market, and other commissioners agreed that Wynn would create more jobs.

Acting Commission Chairman James McHugh was the only panelist to express a preference for Mohegan Sun, saying that he had environmental and traffic concerns about Wynn’s proposal.

Voters will still decide in November whether to repeal the state’s casino law, which would halt the licensing process before any casino plan can open in the state.

Wynn Resorts plans to turn a roughly 30-acre former chemical plant site along the Mystic River in Everett into the sort of five-star luxury resort that has become the Las Vegas-based company’s hallmark.

The proposal calls for a 365-foot glasslike hotel tower offering about 500 rooms. The casino floor would house 3,242 slot machines and 168 table games.

Wynn’s plan envisions $1.6 billion in spending. About $1 billion of that would be construction costs for a site that would consist of 77,250 square feet of retail space, 64,593 square feet of food and beverage options, 32,942 square feet of meeting and convention space, and a 30,392-square-foot nightclub.

Mohegan Sun’s two lodging options — a three-star boutique hotel and a four-star casino hotel — would offer up to 550 rooms total. The casino floor would house 4,200 slot machines and 120 table games.

The proposal also calls for 102,000 square feet of retail space, 92,000 square feet of food and beverage options, and 44,800 square feet of meeting and convention space.