After over 71 years of Havenick family ownership, Magic City Casino was officially sold. PCI Gaming Authority, an affiliate of Alabama-based Poarch Band of Creek Indians, purchased the 30-acre gambling site for $96 million, as part of a larger $600 million acquisition deal.
The Florida Gaming Control Commission approved the transfer of the casino’s state gambling license to the Native American tribe earlier this month. As per the agreement, the transfer will include all:
- House cash
- Permits and licenses
- Vehicles, and trailers
PCI is reportedly considering the development of a luxury resort, shopping centers, and other attractions on the property. It is still uncertain what capital improvement will be there but OCI is expected to borrow funds for those improvements.
Aside from the recent acquisition, PCI also owns and operates gambling sites in Florida and other states, including the Sands Casino Resort in Las Vegas,
More About Magic City Casino
Originally known as Flagler Dog Track, the casino began running greyhound races under its initial gambling permit issued in 1935. The Havenick family, who bought the parimutuel facility 16 years later, have now passed on the reins to the Poarch Band of Creek Indians.
They also added over 800 slot machines in 2004, after Florida approved pari-mutuel sites to use their permits for slot machines and card games. The property was then renamed Magic City Casino and ceased to host dog races in 2020. In recent years, the casino added jai alai matches to their offerings.
Havenicks Are Still in the Industry
While the Havenicks have relinquished their ownership of Magic City Casino, they remain in the Florida gambling industry, as they still own Casino Miami, which offers jai alai, slot machines, and card games. They also have a gambling permit to operate a summer jai alai fronton and poker room in Miami’s Edgewater neighborhood.
The family settled a federal lawsuit with the city of Miami in 2021. This challenged a resolution banning gambling facilities in Edgewater. In exchange for rescinding the legislation, the Havenicks agreed not to place slot machines in the proposed parimutuel and poker site.
South Florida Gambling Expansions
Meanwhile, other efforts to expand gambling in South Florida have failed. In 2021, Aventura-based developer Jeffrey Soffer and former President Donald Trump were unsuccessful in convincing state legislators to allow casino games at their respective properties in Miami-Dade County. The cities of Doral and Miami Beach also passed prohibitions against gambling establishments.