PENN Starts Construction on $100 Million Hotel at Hollywood Columbus Casino

PENN Starts Construction on $100 Million Hotel at Hollywood Columbus Casino
Fact Checked by Michael Peters

Hollywood Casino Columbus is getting ready to grow. On Tuesday, officials from PENN Entertainment hosted a groundbreaking party for a hotel at its gaming venue in the Ohio capital city.

According to a company release, PENN, which shook up the Ohio betting apps landscape with the launch of ESPN BET in November, expects to spend about $100 million on the project.

Current plans call for 180 rooms, meeting space, an unnamed restaurant and other amenities company leaders will announce later. The hotel will be connected to the casino located on the western side of Columbus and create hundreds of construction jobs and about 100 permanent positions.

“Since opening in 2012, our Columbus property has experienced tremendous growth, and the addition of a hotel at Hollywood Casino Columbus will create a true regional destination,” PENN CEO Jay Snowden said in the release.

A PENN spokesperson told the hotel is expected to open sometime in the second half of 2025. The Hollywood Columbus hotel project is part of an $850 million investment PENN is making in four of its 43 U.S. casinos. Gaming and Leisure Properties, the real estate investment trust that owns the property, is providing up to $575 million, according to PENN.

Hollywood is Top Ohio Casino

Hollywood Columbus is one of four casinos licensed by the Ohio Casino Control Commission. The others are Hard Rock Cincinnati, JACK Cleveland and Hollywood Toledo. It has been the most successful one this year, according to OCCC data.

Through September, it has reported $204.9 million in total revenue, which equals 26.8% of the $763.4 million the four casinos have won through the year’s first nine months. Hollywood Columbus’ 1,622 slots have attracted $2.13 billion in handle, more than 30% of the $6.99 billion wagered on Ohio casino slots this year.

The casino’s brick-and-mortar Ohio sports betting location has also had the most traffic among retail sportsbooks in recent months. In September, the former Barstool Sportsbook reported a handle of more than $4.4 million. Only one of the 14 other licensed Ohio retail sportsbooks had a handle that month exceeding $3 million.

Earlier this month, PENN renamed its retail sportsbooks under the Hollywood brand. That occurred as part of the changeover to ESPN BET — including ESPN BET Ohio — for the company’s online sports betting operations.

PENN has a major gaming presence in the Buckeye State. Besides the two Hollywood casinos, it operates racinos in Dayton and Youngstown. Ohio racinos feature only video lottery terminals and are regulated by the state’s Lottery Commission.

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Steve is an accomplished, award-winning reporter with more than 20 years of experience covering gaming, sports, politics and business. He has written for the Associated Press, Reuters, The Louisville Courier Journal, The Center Square and numerous other publications. Based in Louisville, Ky., Steve has covered the expansion of sports betting in the U.S. and other gaming matters.

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