On Aug. 13, 2014, Richmond’s River Rock Casino announced record profits for the last financial quarter. This spells good news not only for River Rock’s employees, but also for casino enthusiasts across the Province of British Columbia.
River Rock’s Record Finances
During the fiscal quarter ending June 30, 2014, River Rock saw a 33 percent boost in revenue, earning $53.8 million in three months. During the same timeframe, the Richmond casino realized $32.7 million in earnings — an increase of 54 percent over prior quarter earnings. The casino hotel also had a higher than usual occupancy rate, which boosted finances.
CEO Rod Baker attributed the jump in casino profits to visits from wealthy Asian tourists and told Business Vancouver that River Rock Casino guests also frequent high-rolling Las Vegas and Macau casinos.
With table games at River Rock generating $200 to $300 million, according to Baker, there’s a lot of room to expand operations to meet the surge in demand. With a high Asian population, Vancouver brings in lots of Asian travelers coming to stay with family members living in Canada. The new Asian gamers are used to playing at much larger houses, and they play in Vancouver because they’re visiting the area. How might things change if they were instead seeking out Vancouver as a premier gaming destination?
Being that it is just a 5-minute train ride from Vancouver International Airport, River Rock is easily accessible to local gamers and to tourists. The River Rock Casino also serves as a community hub for Richmond, offering events and entertainment in addition to gaming.
“Ideally, you want people spending some time at the casino, you want them buying a room, going to a show, spending money at the spa. We want to give them a rounded experience,” Howard Blank, vice president of media, told The Globe and Mail.
So far, it seems that River Rock’s rounded approach to entertainment has paid off handsomely.