After several delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Cascades Casino in North Bay, ON opened to the public on March 9.
Gateway Casinos and Entertainment Limited started construction in May of 2019. Work was to be completed by July 2020. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ontario’s health and safety protocols halted construction. After months of delays, the work resumed in early April 2021.
Cascades Casino North Bay gambling and amenities
The 39,000-square foot casino on Pinewood Park Drive is home to 300 slots and six live table games of roulette, blackjack and 10 electronic table games. The facility will employ some 200 people. It is Gateway’s 13th casino in Ontario and the 29th overall in the province.
Cascades Casino’s amenities include the Match Eatery & Public House and entertainment venue. The Match Eatery boasts 12 beers on tap and 80 per cent of food served is made from scratch. Match is also home to 16 television sets in the restaurant including a 110-inch projector that will televise sports.
“I don’t think there’s a kitchen in North Bay to rival it,” said Rob Mitchell, director of communications and public affairs for Gateway Casinos. “I’m told the only kitchen that has this degree of sophisticated technology for food preparation is the hospital,” he said. “It was designed by culinary experts, it had the input of actual master chefs who said, ‘This is the ergonomics you need to make it efficient and do your work.’ The planning and the detail that went into it is really self-evident.”
Mitchell said the casino’s patio is one of the North Bay casino’s best features.
“It’s a beautiful patio. It gets sun all day, right from the crack of dawn until sunset in the evening,” Mitchell said. “You get that beautiful exposure where you’re in sunlight the whole day. It’s almost a four-season patio… It has a beautiful gas fireplace, it’s got outdoor heating, but it also has a summer misting air conditioning system that spritzes a gentle, cool, misted breeze across the patrons. It is wide open. There’s egress between the patio and the dining room. You can walk in and out. There’s a great open space that slides open to provide that access, but there’s a thermal barrier, too.”
Cascades Casino North Bay — project background
Gateway Casinos and Entertainment is one of the largest Canadian gambling and entertainment companies. The facility cost some $41 million, according to estimates.
Ground broke on May 31, 2019. Several months of construction took place before the pandemic brought that to a halt in early 2020. The workers received the green light to continue in November when they poured the concrete floor. Installed next was the electrical. After another delay, the construction resumed again on April 5, 2021.
“I’m really excited that we got it completed. It was very touch-and-go there for a while with the pandemic and whether or not we would be able to build it out and how long (the pandemic) was going to last,” Mitchell said.
“We’re coming out of — for lack of a better word — a drought. We went through a period of enormous instability where we were shuttered for what amounted to almost 24 months.”
Cascades Casino will be another Gateway facility, joining a group of established casinos such as Casino Rama, Gateway Sault Ste Marie, Grand Villa Casino Edmonton and others.
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