A new retail sportsbook and casino are coming to the northern suburbs of Chicago, as Circa Sports has announced a deal with Full House Resorts, Inc. to open an expansive complex in Waukegan no later than 2025.
The new casino and sportsbook will be called American Place, and it will be the first retail sportsbook for Circa Sports outside of its home state of Nevada. The company currently operates casinos in Nevada, Colorado, and Iowa.
“We are thrilled to introduce our industry-leading sports betting and hospitality experience to Illinois,” Circa Sports founder and CEO Derek Stevens said in a statement on Monday. “We have developed incredible relationships with Midwest bettors at our Las Vegas casinos, so to bring our product to the great state of Illinois is a major milestone for us.”
This will be the fifth casino located near Chicago. The city recently revealed plans for a future casino within the city limits from a proposal by Bally’s.
Online Sports Betting Also Included In Circa Deal
According to a press release from Circa Sports to announce the plans, its arrival in Illinois will also include the Circa Sports mobile sports betting app, which would operate within the framework of a multi-year deal between the Las Vegas-based company and Full House Resorts, Inc.
Under an eight-year agreement, Full House will build the resort and casino and be the license-holder, granting gaming access for Circa in Illinois. Full House will receive revenue sharing from the casino once the casino, retail and mobile sportsbooks are launched.
The Circa Sports app is available in Nevada, and it would be the eighth operating mobile sportsbook in Illinois, joining FanDuel, DraftKings, BetRivers, PointsBet, BetMGM, Caesars, and Barstool Sports. In March, Illinois set a state record for total sports betting handle with $971 million — with all but $43 million coming from online activity.
American Place Casino And Sportsbook In Waukegan
The proposed American Place Casino and Resort will be built in the heart of Waukegan’s Fountain Square district. According to the project website, it will be an “unrivaled, upscale gaming and entertainment destination.” The project is anticipated to cost $375 million and will result in more than 1,200 jobs.
Waukegan is roughly 40 miles north of Chicago, and for years, leaders in the community have shared a vision for transforming a portion of the city into an entertainment destination. In 2018, the city purchased 32 acres in the Fountain Square district, much of it formerly the home of a shopping mall. The city snatched up the land before it could be developed into residential properties, hoping to lure a developer to complete its vision for a tourist and entertainment district.
Until the new casino and resort are opened, Full House will operate The Temporary by American Place as an interim casino venue beginning later this year. Full House’s license from the state of Illinois will allow it to offer casino gaming at The Temporary in Waukegan while the new American Place project is being constructed.
The casino at American Place, operated by Circa Sports, will feature approximately 1,600 slot machines and at least 100 table games. The complex will host a premium 20-villa hotel, a 1,500-seat live entertainment venue, and several restaurants and drinking spots. The sportsbook, branded as a Circa Sports retail location, will be located within the property and provide a space for customers to wager on and view sporting events taking place from around the world.