Overall adjusted gross revenue (AGR) from casino gaming in the Commonwealth of Virginia declined 2.51% in March and show table games taking a big hit. The Virginia Lottery released revenue numbers for March on Friday in its monthly report on Virginia casinos.
Two casinos are currently operating in Virginia: Hard Rock’s Bristol Casino and Rivers Casino Portsmouth. Bristol Casino opened in July 2022 followed by Rivers Casino Portsmouth opening in January.
Combined, Bristol Casino and Rivers Casino reported a total AGR of $37,431,231 for March, down 2.51% from the February Virginia casino revenue report ($38,393,377).
Total slot machine AGR came in at $27,845,106 for March, down 1.6% from February ($28,325,023), while table games recorded $27,845,106, down 4.79% from February ($10,068,353).
Lower AGR means lower tax revenue for the state. A total of $6,737,622 was paid to the state from casino activity in March, down 2.51% from February ($6,910,808).
Virginia sports betting handle fell in February, but numbers for March have not been released.
Slot and Table Games Ups and Downs
A detailed look at both casinos shows a relatively steep drop in AGR for table games at Bristol Casino between February and March.
Bristol Casino is currently a temporary casino that will grow into a full resort planned to open in May 2024. The casino opened with 870 slot machines and 21 tables in July 2022.
In March, Hard Rock announced it was expanding its casino floor by adding more slot machines and table games. Guests now have a total of 890 slots and 29 table games to pick from at the location, the casino said in March.
For March, Bristol Casino reported a total AGR of $13,804,383, according to the Virginia Lottery report, up 0.5% from February ($13,731,775). The casino’s record-highest AGR was reported in December at $14.8 million.
The casino reported $11,890,991 in AGR from slot machines in March, up 6.22% from February ($11,194,940). Meanwhile, table games reported $1,913,391, down 24.6% from February ($2,536,835). Bristol paid $2,484,789 in taxes for March.
Turning our attention to Rivers Casinos Portsmouth, the location had the opposite experience compared to Bristol Casino with slots revenue down and table games up.
Rivers Casino Portsmouth reported a March AGR of $23,626,848, down 4.2% from February ($24,661,600).
The casino generated $15,954,114 in revenue in March with 1,420 slot machines, down 6.8% from February ($17,130,082). Table games showed a bit of an upside for March reporting $7,672,733, up 1.6% from February ($7,531,518) with 81 tables. Portsmouth paid $4,252,833 in taxes for the month.
Five Virginia cities have been approved to build casinos: Bristol, Portsmouth, Danville, Norfolk and Richmond.
Caesars Virginia in Danville has plans to be the next casino to open in the Old Dominion. The temporary casino is scheduled to open in July. The facility will grow into a permanent casino scheduled to open in 2024. The location will include a retail Caesars Sportsbook Virginia.
Norfolk's HeadWaters Resort & Casino plans to open a temporary facility sometime this year that will expand into a permanent casino later.
Richmond tried to get a casino approved during a referendum in 2021 but was voted down. The city hopes to hold a second referendum this year.
Sports Betting Has Head Start Over Casinos
The state’s casino market is just getting started, a little over a year behind the launch of Virginia sports betting apps, which went live in January 2021.
Bettors in Virginia have wagered over $9 billion on sports in just two years. The state is host to 16 online sportsbooks and two retail sportsbooks (one at Bristol Casino and one at Rivers Casino Portsmouth).
Betting guides, app reviews and Virginia sportsbook promos to help those wagering are just a click away at BetVirginia.com.