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Artist's rendering of renovation at Tampa's Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. (Photo: Seminole Tribe)

Tampa Bay

Seminole Tribe announces $700M expansion at Hard Rock Tampa

The first line of the press release says it all: “Florida’s biggest casino is getting even bigger.”

The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa on Wednesday announced “a nearly $700 million expansion … with 5,000 slot machines and almost 200 gaming tables,” the release said. Work should be completed by mid-2019.

“The expanded casino will offer one of the largest varieties of slot machines in the nation and will offer guests approximately 200,000 square feet of entertainment and gaming,” it added.

The rest of the press release is below:

Expansion of the Seminole Hard Rock Tampa is part of a record $2.4 billion economic investment by the Seminole Tribe of Florida in its two flagship destination casino complexes in Tampa and Hollywood. The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood is undergoing a simultaneous expansion and renovation.

In Tampa, the Tribe’s economic investment means there will be close to an additional 1,000 part time and full time jobs, which are in addition to the over 2,000 construction jobs on-site during the two-year building project. Economic analysts point to another 1,022 indirect permanent jobs generated by the casino expansion, plus another 2,268 indirect construction jobs, for a grand total of more than 6,000 additional jobs.

“Major expansion of the Seminole Hard Rock Tampa is further evidence of the Seminole Tribe’s commitment to the people of Florida that it will continue to increase the economic impact of its Seminole Gaming facilities,” said Jim Allen, CEO of Seminole Gaming.

The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa is one of the largest employers in Tampa Bay with more than 3,500 team members and the property will continue to grow as a destination resort with the ongoing expansion.

“Our team members are the backbone of our operation, and we value their attention to detail and focus on guest care,” said Joe Lupo, President of the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa. “In addition to enhancing our guest experience and offering a premiere resort entertainment destination, this expansion will offer more growth opportunities for our team members.”

The centerpiece of the expansion is a new 15-story hotel tower with an additional 564 hotel rooms and suites.  In total, the expanded Seminole Hard Rock Hotel will offer approximately 800 guest rooms, including 79 new hotel suites for a new total of 88 suites. For the ultimate VIP experience, the top floor of the new hotel tower will feature a private gaming parlor for VIP guests, with an exclusive check in and private elevators to rock star suites.

Hotel guests will have access to three ultra-lavish new outdoor swimming pools adjacent to the second level of the new hotel tower that will feature a trendy 120-seat Pool Grille restaurant and bar. Measuring the size of a football field, the expanded pool and deck area will be a hot spot for frequent special events for casino guests with the inclusion of day and night life activations. The outdoor pool area is designed by the renowned landscape architecture firm, EDSA.

A new 25,000 square foot Rock Spa & Salon will also open on the second level of the hotel tower and will offer pool-side services for the ultimate resort experience. The new spa will replace the existing spa and salon.

Seminole Hard Rock Tampa will continue to expand and refresh their culinary amenities with the addition of a new 200-seat Italian restaurant slated to open next fall, making the restaurant the third fine dining restaurant the property will offer. The property is known for their award-winning restaurants Council Oak Steaks & Seafood and The Rez Grill.

Additional renovations and updates are planned for the existing Hard Rock Cafe, Fresh Harvest Buffet, Plum VIP Lounge and Food Court. Rise Kitchen & Bakery will be redesigned and relocated as part of the casino expansion project.

The property will also continue to elevate their music and entertainment programming with a 30,000-square foot Seminole Hard Rock Event Center that is under construction on the second level of the casino complex. Included is a 17,000-square foot grand ballroom for concerts, conventions, trade shows, private events, and large-scale poker tournaments.

Six additional retail shops will join the existing two retail outlets to more than triple the casino complex’ current shopping options. An additional 700 parking spaces will increase the total number of available parking spaces to approximately 6,000.

Architects for the expansion are Klai Juba Wald Architects of Las Vegas. Interior designs are by Wimberly Interiors, Coral Gables, Laurence Lee Associates, Los Angeles, and Klai Juba Wald Interiors, Las Vegas.

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