The Biloxi Casinos - A Touch of Vegas on the Gulf Coast
It's easy to get to the Biloxi casinos from Gulf Shores. Just hit Alabama Highway 59 (Gulf Shores Parkway) or the Foley Beach Expressway. Take I-10 West past Mobile into Mississippi and follow the signs. The drive time is about two hours to Biloxi Mississippi.
Gambling was legalized in Mississippi in 1990, and since then gaming companies have went to work to draw gaming enthusiasts from as far away as possible. It has been no trouble at all for them to attract both local residents and visiting tourists from the Gulf Shores, Alabama, area.
Many visitors have no idea that when they are having fun in the casinos they are actually on huge barges secured to land facilities. The Mississippi State Legislature permitted gambling but decided to confine it to select waterfront, perhaps paying homage to the riverboats that once carried gamblers up and down the Mississippi River.
After Katrina, the state legislature altered its gaming law to allow casinos to build on land within 800 feet of the water. This has encouraged more companies to build new properties and put more money into them than they probably otherwise would have. There are several new casinos in the building or planning stages.
For those who like to gamble, there's certainly plenty of that available, and when you sit down at a slot machine or a gaming table the experience isn't much, if any, different than it would be in Las Vegas. The big difference is that it didn't take all day to get there, you aren't one bit tired, and when you've reached your limit you can be back in Alabama at your home or rental in a couple hours.
For those who don't enjoy gambling, a trip to Biloxi is still fun. We aren't gamblers but we often visit Biloxi. We get a nice room with a jacuzzi, visit the seafood buffet, and then sit around the pool for awhile.
We try to visit Biloxi when a good show is in town. We will never forget seeing Ted Nugent at the Grand Casino in August 2005 - the week before Hurricane Katrina came to town and messed up the place a little bit.
Actually Katrina made a very big mess, basically erasing the casinos from the coast. Many people were anxious for the Hard Rock Casino to open for business. Literally days before the grand opening, Katrina came ashore and destroyed the place, doing $125 million dollars in damages and destroying a tremendous amount of rare rock and roll memorabilia.
Yes, Katrina was horrible, but the Mississippi Coast has recovered very well, and in fact it is even better than it was before the big storm.
Presently there are eleven Biloxi Casinos: