The Seminole Tribe has confirmed it will roll out retail sports betting across its casinos in Florida in December after the Supreme Court of the United States lifted the stay keeping its platform down.
The tribe, which runs the Hard Rock brand, notified stakeholders that it will launch retail sports betting as part of a wider rollout of casino gaming as part of the compact it signed with Gov. Ron DeSantis back in 2021. This includes craps and roulette games as well as retail sports betting.
“The Seminole Tribe of Florida’s new initiative will create jobs, increase tourism, and provide billions in added revenue for our state,” said DeSantis. “I was proud to work with the Tribe on our historic Gaming Compact and I look forward to its full implementation.”
Craps, roulette and retail sports betting will launch on Dec. 7 at all three Seminole Casinos in southern Florida: Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, Seminole Classic Casino in Hollywood and Seminole Casino Coconut Creek. A day later, it will launch at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Tampa and by the following Monday, will be live in all its venues in the state.
The tribe has stated that it will reveal more details of events that will take place across the weekend of December 8-11 to celebrate the launch of expanded casino gaming across its venues.
“With the expansion of the new scope, we are creating over 1,000 new jobs made possible by the Compact,” said Jim Allen, CEO of Seminole Gaming and Chairman of Hard Rock International. “This is a historic milestone that immediately puts Florida in the same league with the world’s great gaming destinations.”
The Seminole Tribe has gained the confidence to roll out retail sports betting after the SCOTUS denied West Flagler’s request for an extended stay of the mandate issued by the Circuit Court of Appeals in the case.
This theoretically means that Seminole Tribe could fully relaunch Hard Rock Bet on online channels as well as retail venues, but as West Flagler could still fill its writ of certiorari petitioning SCOTUS to hear the case from the beginning, the tribe is still playing it relatively cautiously.
Meanwhile, another source of angst around launching online stems from the state case, in which West Flagler is filing against DeSantis, Florida Speaker of the House Paul Renner and President of the Senate Kathleen Passidomo.
West Flagler’s argument insists that the only way to expand gambling in Florida any further is by a constitutional amendment, therefore another public vote. It goes on to claim that the compact between the state and Seminole is beyond DeSantis’ authority and that the legislature had no authority to pass the compact as law.
The Florida Supreme Court has granted DeSantis an extension to file its response in the state case, meaning the governor now has until December 1 to respond. This means the response would be due after the deadline for West Flagler to file its writ of certiorari at the federal level.
While this case rumbles on in the background, the Seminole Tribe has pushed ahead with its retail rollout, with its casino locations preempting a full online rollout.
“The Seminole Tribe thanks the State of Florida, the US Department of the Interior and the US Department of Justice for defending our Compact. By working together, the Tribe, the State and the federal government achieved a historic legal victory,” said Marcellus Osceola Jr., Chairman of the Seminole Tribe of Florida.