Gambling in Biloxi

Biloxi has long been known as the place to go to gamble if you happen to be in the southeast. It lies in Mississippi on the Gulf of Mexico but was hit hard by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. That forced several of the casinos to close to be rebuilt and many still have not reopened. Much like New Orleans, Biloxi is struggling to regain its glamorous pre-Katrina tourism.

Prior to the hurricane, laws required the casinos to be built over the water, so the buildings were basically floating just off the coast. Many casinos would have the hotel and parking deck on the main land and a bridge over to the casino part, just feet away from the shore. Obviously, that added significantly to the expense of building a casino in Biloxi. Now the laws are more relaxed and many casinos have been rebuilt across the street from the Gulf.

While tourism in Biloxi is way down, it is still the place to go if you want to go to a casino and live in the southeast but can't afford the flight to Las Vegas or Atlantic City. All of the casinos feature a large gaming area with hundreds if not thousands of slot machines, poker, and various other casino games, a large affordable buffet, an upscale steakhouse, and usually at least another restaurant. All casinos also have a hotel, and you can get some very cheap rooms if you go at the right time – during the week, rooms are much lower, and even weekends, rooms are cheaper than you would expect because they are trying hard to get business back up.

Last time I went to Biloxi, I stayed at the new Grand Casino shown in the picture, which is very nice and affordable (about $60 for a weeknight and $100 for a weekend). It doesn't have all the glitz and glamour of the Isle of Capri or Beau Rivage, which are clearly the two nicest and largest casino-hotels in Biloxi now. Isle of Capri is at the edge of Biloxi and is the first thing you see when you come over the bay on Highway 90. Rooms at either of those hotels will run around $100 on a weeknight and $180 on a weekend. I would recommend staying the Grand but visiting the other casinos during the day.

Additionally, the Beau Rivage and Isle of Capri have performances daily. These are usually concerts, dances, or variety shows – not Vegas quality as they cost only $15 most times, but they can be very enjoyable. I was actually there around Christmas so I saw the Christmas concert/dance at the Beau RIvage – not spectacular but it had a good feel and exciting atmosphere.