The residents of the area are a complete mix of people drawn from the entire length of The United States’ Gulf of Mexico shoreline, from Texas to Florida.
Grand Casino – The Biloxi member of the Caesars Entertainment empire, the Grand is the gaming mega-giant’s spacious and versatile property with a beach front location.
On a ten mile stretch of Route 90, the main thoroughfare through Biloxi and Gulfport, aptly named Beach Boulevard, sit nine large casino and hotel resorts (select casino name for individual review):
IP Casino Resort & Spa – A short drive off Beach Boulevard, the monolithic tower of IP soars over its neighbors and gives guests all the luxury of a high-end resort.
Many casinos in Biloxi were severely damaged by Hurricane Katrina. Biloxi, like its neighbor, Gulfport, is a mix of southern sunshine and Caribbean attitude.
Biloxi and Gulfport are very much beach communities. The pace of life is easy going and relaxed, as if on permanent vacation. The most popular sports team is the New Orleans Saints; the LSU Tigers and Alabama Crimson Tide seem better represented than either of Mississippi’s SEC members. They are the only two casinos which people regularly walk between.
The Beau Rivage and Hard Rock sit directly next to each other and comprise the center of gambling action in Biloxi. Surprisingly, its home state of Mississippi seems to have less cultural influence upon Biloxi than these neighborings. The city operates on island rhythms, strummed by Jimmy Buffett, and gives visitors a nice place to escape for a little while. At the time, Mississippi state law prohibited land-based gaming and the casinos were housed on floating barges. The influences of both Louisiana and Alabama are felt throughout this sleepy beach community, parked on the sand of the Gulf of Mexico. In October of 2005, Mississippi revised the laws to allow onshore gambling,facilitate reconstruction, and save an industry vital to its economy.
Beau Rivage Resort & Casino – French for “beautiful shore,” famed Las Vegas developer Steve Wynn has made the Beau Rivage into Biloxi’s premier, award-winning casino.
Seated upon the sands of Biloxi and looking out upon the horizon that stretches over the Gulf of Mexico, it is not hard to imagine why Jefferson Davis chose this location for his retirement. Kessler is home to one of the Air Force’s larger medical units as well as its large fleet of planes, known as “hurricane hunters,” that are used to monitor meteorological conditions.
In 2005 the entire face of the Gulf Coast was irreversibly marked by the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Only the IP and Boomtown are a short distance from Beach Boulevard.
Located an hour east of New Orleans and an hour west of Mobile is the gambling town of Biloxi, Mississippi. It is a resilient community, married to the water, where the trees, once broken by Katrina, have been carved into beautiful dolphins and birds.
Although the casinos of Biloxi and Gulfport do not, for the most part, neighbor one another, most of them are situated directly upon Route 90. Although New Orleans received most of the media attention during the storm’s aftermath, Biloxi and Gulfport still bear the devastating scars prominently. There are countless abandoned buildings, driveways that lead to nothing, and empty concrete slabs where buildings once sat.
Boomtown Casino – Themed after a 19th century mining and ranching settlement, Boomtown prides itself on being the “local’s casino” of Biloxi.
Hard Rock Hotel & Casino – Located in the heart of town, the Hard Rock boasts a touch of Hollywood glamour and hosts some of the best entertainment acts in town.
Treasure Bay Casino and Hotel – The smallest casino in Biloxi, Treasure Bay is able to offer friendly staff and some of the most reasonable rates in town.
Palace Casino Resort – Seated on the Back Bay of Biloxi, the Palace is a stylish gambling venue, and the only non-smoking casino on the Gulf Coast.
Isle Casino Hotel – On the western edge of town, Isle sits directly upon the beach and gives visitors great access to both the Gulf and Back Bay.. Island View is the only casino in Gulfport, a short, 15 minute drive from Biloxi. Along with great southern barbeque, one finds an abundance of shrimp, crawfish, and crab in the local cuisine. The Grand, Isle, and Palace are all located at the eastern end of Biloxi.
Margaritaville Casino and Restaurant -The Jimmy Buffett empire throws its hat into the Biloxi casino market.
Island View Casino Resort – The only casino located in Gulfport, Island View seems to thrive on the more affluent surroundings and short drive from Biloxi.
One cannot visit Biloxi and Gulfport without being aware of the proximity of Louisiana and Alabama. Visitors that tire of the casinos can spend a day in the sunshine, rent a jet ski, or go for a peaceful bike ride along the beach.
Kessler Air Force Base is located in Biloxi and adds a military presence of both active and retired personnel. The high winds and water surges of Katrina pushed many of them hundreds of feet inland and smash several to pieces