Millionaire's Casino Finally Ready - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

08/26/04

Millionaire's Casino Finally Ready

After months of delays, the Millionaire's Casino is finally ready to set sail. The gambling boat is scheduled to depart on its maiden sea voyage tonight. The boat will head out to international waters where the gaming will begin. And the whole crew has been working tirelessly to get everything just so for customers tonight.

They're loading up the machines, putting the cards on the table, and rolling the dice on their new venture. It's more than just a gamble, the Millionaire's Casino has been a dream in the making for manager Jim Monaghan, one he is finally seeing come true.

"It's very exciting," he said. "It's a long wait, so we've anticipated this for quite a while."

After months of delays for Coast Guard inspections and permits, the Millionaire's Casino is finally ready. The crew has been working around the clock to make everything ship shape.

"We have about 150 machines, a variety of card games, blackjack and poker [on the first floor]," said Monaghan.

Slot technician manager Mike Rupp has been making sure every machine is ready. "I can't wait to get people on here and get the machines going," he told us.

The whole crew shares his enthusiasm. Pam Oliver, housekeeping supervisor, said, "I'm really excited. I'm ready to go. I am."

Crews from the first, to the second and third floors, are busy making last-minute preparations and practicing for tonight.

"We've been waiting for this for a very long time," said blackjack dealer Heather Carvo. "All the dealers have been practicing for six to seven weeks, waiting for the boat to open."

Whether you like the slots, cards, roulette or the craps table, the Millionaire's Casino is betting this will be a winning operation.

"Everyone's been excited," said Monaghan. "I've had positive feedback from everyone, from the city employees to the regular public."

There's room for 420 passengers on board. As of noon, more than 200 of those spaces filled up with advanced reservations. The Millionaire's Casino will cruise every night Monday through Saturday, starting at 5pm, and Sunday afternoons at 1pm.

Reported by: Liz Flynn, lflynn@wtoc.com

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