Baton Rouge riverboat casino winnings surge in October _lowres

 

Riverboat casino winnings in Baton Rouge increased by 13 percent in October, thanks to strong business at L’Auberge that helped offset a decrease at Hollywood Casino.

The Baton Rouge gambling market brought in $24.6 million in October, according to figures released Thursday by Louisiana State Police. That compares with $21.8 million in winnings during October 2014.

L’Auberge Baton Rouge brought in nearly $14 million during the month, a 25 percent increase from the $11.2 million that was won during October 2014.

The Belle of Baton Rouge also saw an increase in winnings, bringing in $5.1 million during the month. That was 4 percent more than the nearly $4.9 million won during October 2014.

Hollywood Casino had a 2.8 percent drop in business, falling from $5.7 million in winnings during October 2014 to nearly $5.6 million.

Statewide, the 15 riverboats, four racetrack slots casinos and Harrah’s New Orleans casino brought in $215.7 million in October, a 10.9 percent increase over the October 2014 total of $194.6 million. The increase would have been much narrower if not for the Golden Nugget Lake Charles. The riverboat casino, which opened in December, had nearly $20.2 million in winnings for the month.

The New Orleans casino market saw its winnings fall slightly by 0.3 percent in October because of a drop in winnings at Harrah’s and the slots at the Fair Grounds.

The gambling establishments brought in nearly $52.2 million during the month, compared with $52.3 million in winnings during October 2014.

Revenue at Harrah’s dropped by 3.1 percent from $27.4 million in October 2014 to $26.5 million.

The casino’s winnings have been seesawing between beating 2014 numbers and falling short.

The casino has blamed its revenue drops on the New Orleans smoking ban, which forces gamblers to leave the slot machines and table games for a cigarette.

Lake Charles, the state’s largest casino market, saw its winnings go up by 31 percent, thanks to the addition of the Golden Nugget. The three riverboats and slots at Delta Downs brought in $72.5 million, compared with $55.3 million the year before.

Shreveport-Bossier City was up 2.9 percent, with the six riverboat casinos and the slots at Harrah’s racetrack bringing in $59.8 million.

The Opelousas market, represented by the slots at Evangeline Downs, was down 5.1 percent to $6.7 million.

Follow Timothy Boone on Twitter @TCB_TheAdvocate