Browse articles by topic

Hard Rock opens temporary land-based casino in Illinois


Hard Rock International has announced the opening of a temporary land-based casino in Rockford, Illinois, ahead of it launching a permanent facility in the state.

‘Rockford Casino: A Hard Rock Opening Act’ features over 37,000sq ft of gaming space, with more than 625 slot machines and Interblock Electronic Table Games.

The venue, which will operate 24 hours a day, seven days week, also has two restaurants and a pop-up retail shop offering the brand’s signature Rock Shop merchandise.

Located at the intersection of East State Street and Bell School Roads, the new facility will serve as a temporary venue, with a permanent Hard Rock Casino to be build one mile east of the site. Both projects will create more than 1,000 jobs in the local area.

Both initiatives were made possible following the passage of Governor J.B. Pritzker’s gaming expansion bill in June 2019, after which authorities in Rockford selected the Hard Rock proposal to open a casino and submitted a single, joint application to the state.

In October 2019, the Rockford and Hard Rock bid was selected as one of six proposals to receive licensing approval.

“We knew from day one that Rockford was the best fit for our casino, thanks to their energy and passion for this project as well as our great working relationship with local leaders,” Hard Rock International chief operating officer Jon Lucas said.

“As this project moved forward, we made it a priority to bring on new vendors and team members from the greater Rockford area to further ingrain ourselves in this community and reaffirm the commitment we made from day one to be an active member of this region for years to come.”

Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara added: “The Rockford community has been wanting and waiting for a casino for nearly three decades. After much hard work by the community, city staff and Hard Rock, today marks a pivotal moment in our history with the opening of the Hard Rock Rockford Casino.

“This new facility will be a regional destination for visitors, as well as an economic driver in our community by providing hundreds of jobs to our residents.”