Publication date: January 31, 2022, 09:39 pm.
Last updated on: January 31, 2022, 11:49 PM.
Beau Rivage Resort & Casino is refurbishing more than 1,700 hotel rooms. This is after renovations were suspended amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier this month, MGM Resorts appointed Brandon Dardeau as its new president and chief operating officer for its Southeast Operations division. In this position, Dardeau, a longtime MGM employee who started his career in a reservations call center two decades ago, will oversee both MGM’s Mississippi destinations – Beau Rivage and Gold Strike Casino Resort.
Beau Rivage Hotel is located on the Gulf Coast in Biloxi. The Gold Strike is located in the northwest part of the state on the Mississippi River in the resorts of Tunica.
recently talking with The Sun Herald, Dardo says the stalled hotel renovation on the Beau Rivage is back. MGM exec explains that guest rooms will feature “Southern flair” paired with Biloxi décor and color themes, including sandy, turquoise, and other beachy shades.
Dardeau adds that Beau Rivage hotel guests will find the same luxury room features as MGM guests staying at the more popular Bellagio on the Las Vegas Strip. This includes everything from the same mattresses as the bed to a mobile application that allows visitors to open and unlock their room doors and adjust the temperature.
Dardeau was part of a regional executive reshuffle announced by MGM Resorts in early 2022. He replaced Travis Lunn, who left for Atlantic City to manage MGM’s Borgata subsidiary. Melonie Johnson left Borgata to return to MGM National Harbor outside of D.C. in Maryland.
Now responsible for Mississippi’s two largest hotels, Dardo says the key to retaining the 1,792 Beau Rivage rooms and 1,133 rooms in the Gold Strike attracts out-of-state visitors. MGM’s regional head says Beau Rivage is using MGM Resorts’ extensive national client database to attract gamblers who typically patronize Las Vegas or Atlantic City south of the Gulf Coast.
The unparalleled views of the Gulf of Mexico and unparalleled customer service often lead to repeat visits, Dardo says. “Beau Rivage” means “beautiful beach” in French.
Our service results are the highest in the company,” Dardo is bragging.
MGM exec is also proud of the ability of Beau Rivage and Gold Strike to maintain their workforce. Dardo reports that about 10 percent of the casino’s 1,835 employees have been there since the start. Beau Rivage opened in 1999.
“We don’t just offer jobs,” he said. “We offer jobs.”
Gaming revenue in Mississippi
2021 was a boom year for Mississippi casinos. The 26 gaming floors combined have raised nearly $2.67 billion. Casino games generated more than $1.6 billion in tax revenue.
The past year has been a much-needed relief from the disruption of business in 2020 due to the coronavirus. Total gaming revenue (GGR) in 2020 was just $1.8 billion, the lowest win since 1995.
The best-ever GGR year for Mississippi casinos was experienced in 2012, when real estate won more than $2.72 billion.
Mississippi casinos are hoping to join the sports betting crowd in 2022 and generate additional revenue. Legal sportsbooks operate in three of the four neighboring states of Mississippi – Tennessee, Louisiana and Arkansas. Only Alabama continues to ban such gambling.