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25 Years of the Riverboat
We're proud of our history here at Isle Casino® Bettendorf. With over 25 years of riverboat gaming in the Quad Cities, we strive to bring back classic ideals to our casino in Iowa.
This doesn't mean that we're stuck in the past! In fact, we had a groundbreaking celebration at our new casino over a year ago. The Isle's land-based casino is expected to open by the summer of 2016.
In anticipation of our new casino, let us give you a trip through time and tell you all about Bettendorf and Iowa's history of riverboat gaming. We hope you'll enjoy your history lesson, and we can't wait to have you over to our new place!
An Iowa and Bettendorf History of Riverboat Gaming
• July 1, 1989: Legislation was passed for the Racing and Gaming Commission licensing organizations to conduct games on boats at in Iowa.
• Aug. 29, 1989: Clinton, Muscatine and Scott counties approved referenda supporting riverboat gaming. They were followed by Jackson County on September 5 of that same year.
• March 8, 1990: Excursion boat gaming licenses were issued to the Riverbend Regional Authority and Steamboat Development Corporation in Bettendorf.
• April 1, 1991: Gaming operation on the Diamond Lady boat in Bettendorf began. The maiden boat took four voyages that day, including a dinner cruise! Special guests included Vanna White of "Wheel of Fortune" fame, and even the Easter Bunny made a surprise visit.
• January 18, 1995: After three years, an excursion gaming boat license was granted to Riverbend Regional Authority and Lady Luck Bettendorf.
• April 21, 1995: The Lady Luck boat began operation on the waters. Visitors found comfort in the low ceilings and the entertaining gaming center.
Isle Casino in Bettendorf
Construction began on our land-based casino in October of 2015. This project totaled $60 million in funds and expanded to 35,000 square feet of space. The casino fills in and connects the courtyard between the north and south tower hotels with a total of 514 rooms for lodging.
On Wednesday, May 13, 2015, a large crowd and the Isle’s® President and Chief Executive Officer Virginia McDowell partook in our groundbreaking ceremony. Our casino will feature elements of the Iowa landscape with table games inspired by tractor tires and a special sunny lighting system.
We're going to feature Farmer’s Pick® Buffet by the casino floor, Keller’s Express® for takeout, and The Lone Wolf® bar with an entertainment stage.
A 240,000 square foot structured parking garage will protect you and your vehicle from any sort of weather. We'll have a valet service as well! Simply step in the door and be greeted by natural curving wall structures that echo the spirit of Iowa.
Our gaming room will be on a single floor for your convenience. We'll have a pit canopy and a ceiling design that mimics the look of an aerial view of the Midwestern plains. Our high limits room resembles an Iowa sunset with jewel-toned coloring of red and purple decor.
Check out our calendar to see when you can join us at the new Isle Casino Bettendorf. We bet it'll be worth the wait!