Casino Boat Docks in Savannah - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

05/20/04

Casino Boat Docks in Savannah

It's something a lot of people are waiting for, and now, gambling's coming back to Savannah. After months of delays and mystery, the much-talked-about Millionaire's Casino boat has finally docked along River Street.

Co-owner Jim Monaghan  told us, "Our phones have been ringing asking where's the vessel? We lost business, and we want to make it up."

Monaghan says first, rigid Coast Guard inspections and then Mother Nature wreaked havoc with their schedule. They hoped to be here a month ago, then last week. But a tropical storm stranded them in the Bahamas for six days.

"We crossed a lot of hurdles, but we finally got here," he said.

The last three days, the Millionaire's Casino has been holding a job fair to fill 200 positions, ranging from slot technicians and cashiers to dealers. "The job fair has had an overwhelming response," said Monaghan.

There have been more than 1,000 job applicants.

River Street business owner Nick Pappas figured the casino boat idea had sunk. He says for two months, it was a no-show. Now it's here, and he hopes it survives.

Monaghan hopes times have changed and will improve the Millionaire's Casino cruise's odds for success. "When the other vessels were here, they were competing with land-based casinos in South Carolina," he said. "That's no longer a threat."

The casino cruise owners expect the boat to be open for business in the next ten days to two weeks. It will have a soft opening at its dock on River Street with entertainment, food, and a sneak peek for the public.

Reported by: Don Logana, dlogana@wtoc.com

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