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Empire City Casino to reopen on 21 September

9 Sep 2020

(PRESS RELEASE) -- Empire City Casino by MGM Resorts today announced that it will reopen in a limited capacity to the public at 10 a.m. on Monday, 21 September, following closure earlier this year amidst the COVID-19 crisis. Hosted, invitation-only access will be available to certain MLife members ahead of 21 September. Upon re-opening, there will be restrictions on capacity and food and beverage availability, per state regulation.

“This has been an unimaginably difficult and challenging time, and as we reopen our doors and welcome back team members and guests, we owe our gratitude to all healthcare and essential workers and those providing resources to the community,” said Bill Hornbuckle, CEO and President of MGM Resorts. “It’s been several months since we were forced to close, so it is with strong emotion that we welcome our team members back to work. Health and safety remain our first priority, and our commitment to New York has never been stronger.”

Health & Safety

MGM Resorts’ comprehensive “Seven-Point Safety Plan” is a multi-layered set of protocols and procedures designed in conjunction with medical and scientific experts to mitigate the spread of the virus, protect customers and employees and rapidly respond to potential new COVID-19 cases. As time passes, the company will continue to evaluate and evolve its safety protocols. Key initiatives from the MGM Resorts plan, as well as protocols specific to Empire City, include:
  • Employee screening, temperature checks and COVID-19 specific training
  • Guest screening and temperature checks with limited casino entrance points
  • Masks required in all areas for both employees and guests (and provided free of charge)
  • Physical distancing policy for all guests and employees
  • Physical barriers installed in areas where distancing presents challenges
  • Standalone handwashing stations designed by MGM Resorts and conveniently located on the casino floor
  • Increased and enhanced routine cleaning based on CDC guidance, with electrostatic sprayers utilized in many large public areas to apply disinfectant efficiently
  • Restaurant digital menus available to view on personal mobile devices via QR codes
  • Virtual waiting lists for restaurant guests with text message notification when tables are ready
  • MGM Resorts has compiled an internal team and processes to respond if a guest or employee tests positive for COVID-19. If a guest tests positive after visiting an MGM property, they are asked to alert the company through a special email address ( The company will immediately report any positive test results to the local health department.
Per the New York State Gaming Commission, Empire City will initially reopen at 25% capacity of the first-floor public spaces, inclusive of employees and guests.

A glimpse at what guests can expect:
  • GAMING – Empire City’s gaming floor of slots and electronic table games will be open. To promote physical distancing, numerous machines have been disabled and chairs have been removed.
  • DINING – The Pub, Empire City Chophouse, and The Big Kitchen international food court will be open for dining. Food and beverage are prohibited on the gaming floor.
  • BARS & BEVERAGE SERVICE: In accordance with state guidelines, bars on property will remain closed and beverage service on the casino floor is not permitted.
  • YONKERS RACEWAY – Live racing resumed at Yonkers Raceway in June, and will continue to follow a revised racing schedule without spectators. State guidelines prohibit on property wagering at this time.
  • PROPERTY ENTRANCE – Entrance to the property will be limited to the Yonkers Avenue entrance. The Central Avenue General Parking entrance and Clark Street Valet entrance will remain closed.
  • PARKING/VALET – Complimentary self-parking will be available for guests; valet parking and shuttle service will not be operational at this time.
For a full list of offerings, please visit Empire City will continue to work closely with medical experts and state officials to determine how to safely and appropriately offer more amenities and entertainment to guests when possible.

During the temporary closure, Empire City remained focused on supporting the community. The property donated 25,000 pounds of food, equivalent to 20,000 meals, to Caritas of Port Chester. A donation by MGM Resorts of $150,000 to New York’s Health Research, Inc. (HRI) was designated for first responders and essential workers to provide $5,000 grants to qualifying households. The money will provide reimbursement for expenses such as health care bills, childcare, lodging, transportation, PPE and more. MGM Resorts also donated $25,000 to the Bronx Community Relief Effort to provide meals to Bronx residents in need, as well as grants to small businesses, allowing them to bring some of their employees back to work; $25,000 to the World Central Kitchen to continue the work with Nourish New York to help provide fresh produce and daily meals through 60+ locations located throughout the Bronx; and $25,000 to Feeding Westchester to provide food to residents in Yonkers and Mt. Vernon.

With the reopening of Empire City on Monday, 21 September, MGM Resorts will have reopened all of its domestic properties, with the exception of Park MGM and Four Seasons in Las Vegas, following temporary closure earlier this year amidst the COVID-19 crisis. Park MGM is expected to reopen within the next 30-45 days.
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