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Bad hand: Horseshoe Baltimore hits new revenue low

Monthly revenues sink to lowest point since the Russell Street casino opened 60 months ago

Above: Baltimore Mayor Rawlings-Blake and Caesars CEO Gary Loveman roll a pair of oversized dice to mark the start of construction of Horseshoe Casino in 2013. (Brew file photo)

Five years after a grand opening that featured pop singers, celebrity chefs and then-rising politicians (Martin O’Malley and Stephanie Rawlings-Blake), Baltimore’s Horseshoe Casino has recorded its poorest monthly revenues in history.

Total slots and table game revenues last month sank to $18,284,122, according to figures released today by the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency.

That’s a 13% drop from August 2018 and the lowest gambling take recorded during the 60 months that Horseshoe has been in operation.

Losing Streak

The August results are consistent with a poor revenue stream all year. After barely matching 2018’s results during the winter months (January-March), Horseshoe has lost $1 in every $10 in revenues it recorded a year ago.

June was an especially bad month. Revenues dropped 19% below the same period in 2018 to $18.7 million.

Last month’s revenues were even lower, despite the fact that there are 31 days in August compared to 30 days in June. (Horseshoe operates around the clock seven days a week.)

Gains Elsewhere

Horseshoe’s disappointing showing compares to a banner month for its two chief competitors.

• MGM National Harbor in Prince George’s County reported revenues of $62.4 million last month, or a 7% jump over August a year ago.

• Live! Casino and Hotel at Arundel Mills recorded a 12.7% gain over August 2018.

Five years ago, Caesars Entertainment joined city officials in speculating that the freshly constructed Russell Street casino would outstrip the Arundel Mills casino (then called Maryland Live) as the premier place to gamble in the greater Baltimore region.

Today the difference in revenue streams between the two casinos is stark.

Last month, Live! collected $53 million in slots and table game revenues, or three times more than Horseshoe’s $18.3 million take.

Overall, August revenues for the state’s six casinos were $154.3 million – the fourth best month in the history of Maryland casinos.

Horseshoe’s share of those casino revenues dropped to 11.9% last month.

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