Greektown Casino-Hotel in Detroit will be known as Hollywood Casino at Greektown effective Sunday, May 1.
Penn National Gaming (PNG) and Caesars Entertainment’s real estate investment trust VICI Properties jointly purchased the downtown casino in May of 2019 for $1 billion. VICI paid $700 million for the real estate assets, and PNG the remaining $300 million for the operating rights. PNG pays VICI roughly $56 million in annual rent.
In order to better bring the Michigan casino into its nationwide gaming portfolio, Penn is renaming the property to Hollywood — the gaming operator’s flagship casino brand.
Becoming Hollywood Casino at Greektown will offer our guests the best of both worlds. We’re keeping all of the unique, neighborhood charm that has defined Greektown since we opened our doors, while adding several new amenities that come with being a part of Penn National’s flagship brand family,” said John Drake, general manager of the Greektown casino.
When Greektown officially becomes Hollywood Casino at Greektown this weekend, PNG will have 18 Hollywood-branded casinos and gaming properties in the US.
Greektown is named for the Detroit neighborhood in which the casino sits. The Greektown Historic District is where a considerable faction of the Motor City’s Greek immigrant community has called home since the early 20th century.
Today, the Greektown neighborhood continues to offer many Greek-themed restaurants and cultural events. Penn National is continuing to pay homage to the area, but wants to bring the glitz and glamor of Hollywood to the city locale.
PNG is planning a three-day red-carpet gala on May 19-21 to celebrate the casino’s rebranding. The casino will run special promos during the Thursday through Saturday celebration, and will make a $10,000 donation to the Greektown Neighborhood Partnership. The nonprofit is dedicated to the “long-term economic and cultural vibrancy of Greektown.”
Greektown’s rebranding continues Penn’s effort to expand the Hollywood casino brand across the country. The Pennsylvania-based gaming firm last fall announced that its Meadows Racetrack and Casino in Washington, Pa., was being renamed Hollywood Casino at The Meadows.
Also in 2021, PNG opened its two so-called satellite casinos in its home state. Hollywood Casino York opened in August, and Hollywood Casino Morgantown opened in December.
La-La Land Meets Detroit
After VICI and Penn National acquired Greektown, the companies pledged a $30 million renovation. The investment included refurbishing all 400 hotel guestrooms and a complete renovation of the resort’s lobby. The lobby has since been completed, while work on the guestrooms continues.
The $30 million allocation additionally includes improvements to the property’s 700-space parking garage, plus new technology on the casino floor. Penn National is bringing its “mywallet” app to the property, which allows users to gamble without cash or plastic.
Greektown also recently extended its entertainment partnership with the nearby Detroit Music Hall to bring in headlining acts. Scheduled performances in May include Michael Bolton, Buddy Guy, and “My Name is Not Mom.”
“Hollywood is coming to Detroit, and we’re ready to roll out the red carpet for our visitors and guests,” Drake concluded. “It’s Tinsel Town meets Greektown.”
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