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February gambling winnings fall in New Orleans, rise in Baton Rouge and other markets


BATON ROUGE, Louisiana — Gambling winnings fell in New Orleans in February compared to a year ago when the city's casino revenue was aided by the Super Bowl.

Winnings at Harrah's, the three riverboat casinos and the slots at the Fair Grounds last month were $59.3 million, down 2.6 percent from the $60.9 million won in February 2013.

The New Orleans Advocate reports ( statewide gambling winnings were $209.7 million in February, according to figures released Wednesday by the Louisiana Gaming Control Board. That compares with $206.6 million a year ago, a 1.5 percent increase.

The 14 riverboat casinos won nearly $142.6 million in February, 2.1 percent more than the $139.7 million won at 13 casinos in February 2013. The Margaritaville Resort Casino in Bossier City, which opened in June, brought in nearly $10 million during the month.

Harrah's actually saw an increase in winnings, going from $31.7 million in February 2013 to nearly $32.8 million, a 3.5 percent gain.

The riverboats saw winnings drop by 10.6 percent, from nearly $24.6 million in 2013 to $22 million. Treasure Chest had the smallest drop, falling 6.7 percent from $9 million in 2013 to $8.4 million.

Boomtown New Orleans, the oldest riverboat in the market, saw its winnings plunge by 13.8 percent, from $10.9 million in 2013 to $9.4 million.

The Amelia Belle in Morgan City brought in nearly $4.3 million, a 6.5 percent decrease from the $4.6 million it won in February 2013.

The slots at the Fair Grounds brought in nearly $4.5 million, down from the $4.6 million in winnings in February 2013.

Winnings at Baton Rouge's three riverboats were up 4.1 percent in February, thanks to continued growth at L'Auberge and the Belle of Baton Rouge. Those gains offset a revenue drop at Hollywood Casino Baton Rouge.

L'Auberge brought in nearly $12.8 million during the month, compared with nearly $11.7 million in February 2013, a 9.4 percent increase.

The Belle of Baton Rouge had an even larger gain. The oldest casino in the Baton Rouge market won nearly $5.7 million during the month, 16.3 percent more than the nearly $4.9 million that was won in February 2013.

Hollywood, which has been hardest hit by the arrival of L'Auberge Baton Rouge, had an 11.8 percent drop in winnings. The casino brought in nearly $6.7 million in February, down from nearly $7.6 million in February 2013.

With a sixth riverboat casino in its fleet last year compared with 2013, the take jumped 4.8 percent to nearly $57.3 million. The Harrah's Louisiana Downs racetrack in Bossier City dropped 10.2 percent to $5.5 million.

Its two riverboat casinos combined for a 4.9 percent gain to $38 million.

Among the other racetracks in the state, Evangeline Downs in Opelousas had a modest 0.6 percent gain to $8 million. Delta Downs in Vinton was down by an even smaller percentage, falling 0.3 percent to $16.4 million.

Information from: The New Orleans Advocate,

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