Today's groundbreaking of the 39-story Earth Hotel, slated to become the tallest building in Connecticut, didn't involve shovels and dirt but a plunger that was pushed by comedian and actor Dan Akroyd and tribal councilors.
Akroyd is a co-founder of the House of Blues.
Out of the 919 rooms planned for the hotel, 261 will be House of Blues-themed rooms. The House of Blues will also own and operate a 250-seat restaurant and a 1,500-capacity music hall.
The hotel will also include a spa and fitness center.
The Earth Hotel will be connected to the Earth Casino by a 320-foot long concourse and a 480-foot long concourse will connect the hotel to the Sky Hotel and Casino. The concourses will include dining and retail outlets. The casino is currently seeking food-and-beverage outlets, according to Mohegan Sun CEO Mitchell Etess.
Also part of the expansion is the Casino of the Wind, a 64-000 square-foot "gaming and entertainment" complex that will feature 680 slot machines, 28 table games and 42 poker tables, according to today's press release. Jimmy Buffet's "Margaritaville" restaurant and the return of the "Chief's Deli" (or "Chef's Deli" according to the press release) will also be included in the Casino of the Wind's Fall 2008 opening.
In February, the tribe announced that 826 slot machines would be added in the expansion but today's press release states that 680 slot machines will be inluded in the new Casino of the Wind. The Feather is awaiting clarification by the tribe.
Note: The number of slot machines to be included in the Casino of the Wind was later confirmed to be about 670 slots give or take up to 5 machines.
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