Baton Rouge's three riverboat casinos' take plunged 8.4 percent in March from the year before, against a tide of overall winnings statewide by riverboats, racetrack casinos and the Harrah's casino in New Orleans.
The state's 15 riverboat casinos, four racinos and land-based Harrah's casino generated an 8.5 percent gain to nearly $254.6 million in winnings during March, according to figures released Monday by the Louisiana Gaming Control Board. That was ahead of the $234.7 million generated in March 2017. Video poker revenue was up 3.7 percent during that same period to $58.6 million from $50.1 million in March 2017.
Baton Rouge had the worst performance of any of the state’s gambling markets. Hollywood Casino had the biggest drop in revenue, falling 14.5 percent to $6.2 million from $7.2 million in March 2017. The Belle of Baton Rouge, the oldest riverboat in the city, was down by 8.6 percent to $5.3 million in winnings. The Belle brought in $5.8 million in March 2017. L’Auberge Baton Rouge, the biggest casino in the market, saw its winnings fall by 5.8 percent to $15.9 million from nearly $16.9 million.
In New Orleans, gambling revenue was up by 10.7 percent from $51.2 million to $56.7 million. Improved business at Harrah's contributed to the gains. The casino posted $26.8 million in winnings during March, 23.7 percent more than the $21.7 million it brought in during March 2017. Winnings at the Fair Grounds racetrack were up by 3.7 percent to $4.5 million.
The Crescent City's three riverboats had a modest gain in winnings during the month of 0.8 percent to $25.4 million. The Amelia Belle in Amelia was the biggest winner, going up by 7.3 percent to nearly $4.2 million. Treasure Chest was up by 0.7 percent to $10 million. Boomtown New Orleans was down 1.4 percent to $11.1 million.
In other markets, casino revenue at Lake Charles' three riverboats and slots at the Delta Downs racetrack was up by 16.3 percent to $93 million. Shreveport-Bossier City, which has the most riverboats of any market along with the Harrah's Louisiana Downs track, was up 1.5 percent to $67.3 million. And Acadiana, which includes the Evangeline Downs race track, was up 11.1 percent to $8.1 million.