BILOXI, MI.- Exactly one year to the day Hurricane Katrina rampaged through the Gulf Coast, destroying much of Biloxis hospitality and tourism industries, Beau Rivage Resort & Casino (www.beaurivage.com), the crown jewel of the Mississippi Gulf Coast gaming industry, will officially reopen on August 29, 2006.
The project is speeding toward completion on an 8-month schedule (after three months of debris removal) that would normally take 18 to 22 months. Essentially, the entire 3.2-million-square foot resort was remodeled and restored, including its casino, all 1,740 guest room and suites, restaurants, shops, kitchens, meeting rooms, and central heating/cooling plant/electrical switchgear. The impressive undertaking was accomplished in record time, thanks in large part to the commitment and dedication to the people of Biloxi as well as excellent professional ties shared by owner, MGM MIRAGE with owners representative, Tishman Construction Corporation and general contractor, W.G. Yates & Sons.
Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, Mississippis tallest building at 32 stories, was originally built in 1999, including an 85,000-square foot casino complete with table games and slot machines. At the time of its opening, it was the largest hotel/casino in the US outside of Nevada, and at 3.2 million square feet, remains the largest building in Mississippi. With its elegant shopping promenade, seven (soon to increase to 11) restaurants, luxury spa and salon, full-service business center and 50,000 square feet of flexible meeting space, Beau Rivage Resort & Casino is the largest resort in the Southeast to receive the AAA Four Diamond award and arguably the premier property in Mississippi, if not the entire Gulf Coast.
Among the nations casinos, those in Biloxi were unique prior to Hurricane Katrina for their requirement, per Mississippi gaming laws, to float on mobile marine vessels. In the case of Beau Rivage, the casino level of the resort, including lounges, restaurant, retail, showroom, kitchen, main entrance and central energy plant, floats at 20 feet above sea level on top of five barges anchored by nine million pounds of structural steel piles 170 feet deep in the Mississippi Sound. This sea-anchored, semi-submersible barge is the largest of its kind in the world. When Hurricane Katrina tore through Biloxi bringing with it a tidal wave estimated at 30 feet, even this superior barge structure could not totally withstand the impact.