BATON ROUGE, LA (KPLC) - Officials with the Louisiana Gaming Control Board voted Thursday morning to choose Creative Casinos LLC, who plans to build Mojito Pointe next to the L'Auberge du Lac Casino in Lake Charles, as their choice to be the recipient of the state's fifteenth gaming license.
The board voted unanimously to approve the project submitted by Creative Casinos, owned by former Pinnacle Entertainment chairman Dan Lee, on Thursday morning. One board member abstained from the vote.
Lee's $400 million project beat out a $167 million proposal for a Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Lake Charles and a $145 million proposal for a casino in Jefferson Parish.
"I am impressed by the responsibility put on me by the gaming commission, for the fact that they have chosen me. We've got a lot of work ahead of us. I don't want to disappoint them. I don't want to disappoint the community. You have, kind of, mixed feelings. Hey, we won! Oh my God, we have to build it! And, we will. We're excited," said Dan Lee
A special election will have to be held in Calcasieu Parish to determine if voters will approve the addition of a new casino to the area. That issue will go before voters on April 30.
Lee says Mojito Pointe will open by the end of 2013, pending the outcome of the election.
Watch later editions of 7News and check kplctv.com for more details as they become available.