Gambling and casinos have been an essential part of American culture ever since the first colonial settlers arrive on the eastern shores of the the continent. Since those humble beginnings, games of chance have become a multi-billion dollar a year business. More and more states are allowing casinos to open up shop within their borders in an effort to boost their economies and keep local money local. Maryland is one of the newest states to open up to casino gaming, and they have kept the tradition alive in dazzling form.
In 2008, voters approved the construction of five privately owned casinos, restricting their game offerings to video style slot machines. Four years later, a sixth casino was given the green light to open. Additionally, voters approved a measure which made table games available at all six locations.
Rocky Gap Casino Resort is located in the town of Flintstone. The doors officially opened on May 22, 2013, inside the boundaries of Rocky Gap State Park. The park’s most significant feature is a massive man-made lake, Lake Habeeb. It sprawls across nearly 250 acres and offers a wide variety of fishing and boating activities. The casino itself features a 200-room lodge overlooking the lake, as well as 10 game tables and more than 550 slot machines. The resort also offers an 18-hole golf course, designed by 18-time winner of major championships, Jack Nicklaus.
Horseshoe Casino, located in the city of Baltimore, plays host to over 2,500 slot machines and 122 table games. Most impressive though, is the very special World Series of Poker room. It is the second largest casino in Maryland at well over 100,000 square feet. Opened on August 26, 2014, the casino also incorporates a massive, 20,000 square foot marketplace, named after the city, which houses a number of eateries, taverns, and pubs that highlight the culture and style of the aptly nicknamed “Charm City”.
Perryville, located in Cecil county, is host to Hollywood Casino, the very first casino to open in the state on September 17, 2010. Folks seeking games like Blackjack, Craps, and Roulette won’t be let down, as Hollywood Casino offers a variety of table games which also include a 10-table poker room, and a great number of slot machines. At 75,000 square feet, it isn’t the largest casino in Maryland, but it certainly has everything the discerning player needs to remain content.
Maryland Live! opened up on June 6, 2012 with 3,200 slot machines and a number of video table games. Since then, it has grown considerably. Over the course of 2012 and 2013, another 1,550 video machines were installed and opened, followed by traditional live table games like 3- and 4-card poker, Mini-Baccarat, and Blackjack. In late August of 2013 the final piece of the puzzle was added when a multi-level room dedicated to Poker was opened to the public. The Hanover-based casino was built on what was once a mall parking lot, and due to this unique design and location, there is a free, convenient parking garage available to all guests 24 hours a day, 7 days a week… because the casino is always open for business, all 365 days of the year.
The small town of Berlin, very near the Delaware border, is home to Ocean Downs, also known as Delmarva Downs. Originally known for horse racing, the casino opened in 1949 and spent many decades treading water until the installation of a $45,000,000 casino. The addition created room for a number of slot machines.
MGM National Harbor is yet to be constructed. It is set to be built in the town of National Harbor in Prince George’s county, just north of the Washington, D.C. The casino will be constructed at an estimated cost of $925 million, and will also feature a resort.