The Rogers Centre, home of the Toronto Blue Jays baseball team, BMO Field, Scotiabank, and 33 acres make up Canada’s newest and largest casino.
The multi-level garage has 3,800 parking spaces, a 400-room hotel will open nearby soon, and a 5,000-seat live entertainment theatre should be ready in a few months.
However, gamblers are here to place bets, and they just started showing up to do so a few hours after the official opening ceremony.
They have several options.
In addition to 145 table games, the casino in north Etobicoke, next to Woodbine Racecourse, has a staggering 4,800 slot machines.
According to Matthew Anfinson, chief executive officer of Great Canadian Entertainment, who spent nearly $1 billion on the project over the past five years, “We are thrilled to be finally unveiling Great Canadian Casino Resort Toronto to the world.”
When the idea of a casino of this size in Toronto first came before the city council more than ten years ago, Rob Ford was the mayor of the time.
“The late (Mayor) Rob Ford wanted two casinos, we lost this by one vote,” remarked Vincent Crisanti, a Toronto councillor from Ward 1 in Etobicoke North, who worked to get the project approved in the end.
Casinos do not, in Crisanti’s opinion, more harm than good to a community.
Ontario Premier Doug Ford, who was originally slated to speak at the opening but was attending an event in eastern Ontario, is a resident of the Etobicoke North riding, where the casino is located. Ford instead sent a video message that was shown on a big television screen.
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