Northern Quest Resort & Casino and Kalispel Casino Operational Executive Team Share their Post-Opening Results


with Tribal Gaming & Hospitality Magazine through an Interactive Roundtable

Reno, NV – Over 130 attendees representing commercial and Tribal casinos throughout the US, Canada, Europe and even Mexico gathered yesterday, May 14, 2020 for an interactive roundtable. The Kalispel Tribe opened both of their casinos on May 5 and in the spirit of collaboration and learning, wished to share what they had learned to help other casinos prepare for reopening.

Deana Scott, Raving CEO moderated the call with the executive team at Northern Quest Resort & Casino and Kalispel Casino which included Tribal Council Member and General Manager, Nick Pierre; Executive Director of Casino Operations, Kevin Zenishek; CFO, Jason Beasley; and Executive Director of Resort Operations, Meg Miller.

Northern Quest Resort & Casino was the first Washington state casino to open after seven weeks of closed operations. According to CFO Jason Beasely, they are at 130% of anticipated revenues due to pent up demand and assume there will be a market correction when the rest of the state opens ends of the month.

The top takeaways from the Northern Quest team to the listeners on preparing for opening:

Do not go lean on staffing! They did several forecasting models based on many reopening dates; however the quantity of visitors has been higher than anticipated and they had to pivot quickly to adequately serve the increased amount of guests.

Turning off every other machine didn’t work. Their initial thought was to turn off 50% of the slot floor and use that as a social spacing mechanism and to adhere to a 50% occupancy level. However, they learned quickly that the machines could not be cleaned quickly enough between play sessions. They reactivated all machines which allowed people more space to move around; guests were naturally self-distancing which allowed for proper sanitizing to take place.

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Download Press Release: Press Release May 2020 General Manager Forum with Northern Quest Casino.pdf

Christine Faria