7,000-seat concert hall planned as part of Resorts World casino expansion at NYC’s Aqueduct Racetrack

A plan for a concert hall at New York City’s only casino could bring superstar acts such as Katie Perry and Enrique Iglesias to Queens.

The Resorts World slots parlor at Aqueduct race track is unveiling a plan Thursday in hopes of securing one of three downstate casino licenses to offer table games such as blackjack, baccarat, poker and craps.

In addition to the table games, the expansion plan includes a snazzy 7,000-seat entertainment venue to host global superstars.

The casino already has a Las Vegas venue, Resorts World Theater, which is currently hosting a residency by the country songstress Carrie Underwood.

The Vegas theater has also featured performances by Luke Bryant, Jake Worthington, Tiesto and Ludacris. Comedians D.L. Hughley, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Theo Von have appeared there as well.

The development plan is projected to create 10,000 mostly union construction and permanent service jobs combined.

Resorts World at Aqueduct opened in 2011 after obtaining a state license to offer video lottery terminal slots and other electronic betting games.

Genting, the Malaysian gaming giant that owns the Aqueduct betting facility, had always envisioned expanding the casino to offer table games.

The casino giant is putting up $50 million to cover start-up costs for a Genting Innovation Campus, which includes a sports academy named in honor of Queens hoops legend Kenny “The Jet” Smith, who won two NBA championships with the Houston Rockets.

“Resorts World came to me with a clear goal of fostering tomorrow’s athletes, student athletes and leaders both on and off the court,” Smith, the LeFrak City native and Archbishop Molloy alum said in a statement provided to The Post.

Assembly women Audry Pheffer & State Senetor Joseph P Addabbo stand in front of an isle with a painting of a casino, at a meeting held at Aqueduct racetrack.
The Resorts World slots parlor at Aqueduct race track is unveiling its plan to apply for a state license to offer live table games including a 7,000-seat entertainment venue to host global superstars. VICTOR ALCORN

“Their investment in this Academy will help us teach the next generation the nuances of the game on and off the court, as well as the social, economic, and cultural impact of sports. I’m thrilled to partner with them to improve the borough that raised me and take it to the next level,” he added.

The Queens racino has invested $1.1 billion into its current facility at Aqueduct Racetrack, from initial construction to the 400-room Hyatt Regency JFK Airport, which opened in 2021 and delivered the first four-star hotel to the area in generations.

Resorts World is New York State’s largest taxpayer and has generated more than $4 billion in revenue supporting the state’s public education fund since the gaming facility first opened its doors more than 12 years ago.

Further details will be announced at a Thursday press conference that will be attended by A-list entertainers with roots in Queens as well as a celebrity chef who will be brought in to guide food service at the gaming facility.

A rendering of a 7,000 seat concert hall proposed for Aqueduct Resorts World casino, with people gathered in the audience

Source; Carl Campanile