The Casino MK finally opens its doors today

Thu 05 Sep 2013

The Casino MK will finally open its doors for the first time at twelve noon on Thursday 5th September.  The casino has been more than six years in the making with Aspers having first to win a three-way competition to convince Milton Keynes Council that it was the best company to fulfil the city’s needs. 

The site at Xscape will be far more than a gaming venue and aims to become Milton Keynes’ premier entertainment destination.  Once The Casino MK is open it will stay so, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, three hundred and sixty-four days a year, closing only for Christmas Day.

General  Manager Nigel Hartland says, “Experience tells us forty per cent of our customers will not play any of the games.  That is why we have worked so hard to produce a place where people can relax with friends, eat a really top class meal in our restaurant Clary’s or watch the most exciting sporting events on our giant screen in the brilliant atmosphere of our luxurious sports bar.  It’s a place where everyone over eighteen will be made thoroughly welcome.”

Parent company Aspers has invested £15 million in the 36,500 square foot site and no creative opportunity has been missed in making it an exciting and welcoming place to visit.  The Casino MK is of national significance as an entertainment venue being the largest super casino outside London. 

Mayor of Milton Keynes, Cllr Brian White, welcomed the opening saying:  “Whilst recognising that some people have reservations I believe the casino is a good thing for Milton Keynes.  It’s another positive addition to the city and, operating sensibly and conscientiously, will bring us significant benefits in terms of the economy and job creation.” 

250 full-time equivalent jobs have been created at the casino, the vast majority of the people filling those vacancies having been recruited locally.  Nigel Hartland says, “For a place like The Casino MK to succeed it has to be part of the community and we felt it was only right to give employment to as many people from the city as possible.”  Recruitment and training were carried out in cooperation with Job Centre Plus and Milton Keynes College.  The localism theme was even extended to the uniforms which were designed by MK College fashion student, 18-year-old Stephanie Czoboriek.  Nigel says, “We have built the casino on the basis of local partnerships and that is how we intend to continue.  We’re here to stay and we will work very hard to make the city proud of us.”

The Casino MK has been established by Aspers Group under its chairman, Damian Aspinall.  The company is widely recognised as an innovator in the industry but also as one dedicated to conducting business in a socially aware manner.  Aspers won the 2013 award from the International Gaming awards as Socially Responsible Operator of the Year – Land Based for its long established and unique Community Action for Responsible Gaming (CARG). CARG is already set up in Milton Keynes and is a voluntary body comprising  gambling charities, religious bodies and community representatives; it works closely with the police, council and seeks to constructively address problem gambling issues in the community. Mr Aspinall is also globally known as a pioneering conservationist.  He is head of the Aspinall Foundation which successfully reintroduces endangered species from captivity into the wild in conjunction with Port Lympne and Howletts Wild Animal Parks.

The Casino MK Facts & Figures

36,500ft² (3,391m²) floor area
108 Slot Machines
22 Gaming Tables
76 Electronic Gaming Terminals
150 seat Poker Room
40 seat restaurant – Clary’s Bar & Grill serving a la carte food 24/7
113,350 gaming chips – all unique to each other and to The Casino MK

Other statistics:
1,100 light individual fittings
39 chandeliers (custom-made and imported overland from Barcelona, Spain, distance 924 miles) comprising 7,642 individual pieces of glass
98% light bulbs energy efficient
5,000m (16,000ft) LEDs
88 miles (142 km) of computer, fire alarm, power, data and security system cables (enough to run to Oxford and back)
190 inch (483cm) media wall in the Sports Bar

Contact details:
The Casino MK, Xscape, 602 Marlborough Gate, Central Milton Keynes, MK9 3XS
Tel: 01908 237776

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