With leisure air travel escalating this summer, airlines have been struggling to keep up with the demand. This resurgence has had a huge impact on air passengers alike. From the long lines at airport ticket counters, to thousands of delays, and cancellations — air travelers are frustrated, exhausted and in some cases downright angry.
But many astute Americans have chosen to avoid the chaos at airports and have taken to the roadways instead. Metroplex area residents should follow this lead and take the short drive north to visit the new $600+ million expansion of Choctaw Casino and Resort in Durant, Oklahoma.
This new addition, The Sky Tower, officially opened the weekend of August 6, 2021. The festivities and events included $1 million in cash drawings, live entertainment, photos ops, a DJ in The District, and a spectacular firework display. The grand opening celebration will continue through the end of August 2021 with an additional $800,000 in cash giveaways.
If you missed the grand opening shindig, don’t despair… the celebration was merely a kickoff for what’s to come! The 21-story Sky Tower has raised the roof in more ways than one. From sophisticated and modern hotel rooms, to gaming, top-notch entertainment, dining, and fine art commissioned by local Choctaw artists – the flurry of action and activities is unlimited. Everyone in your group will be satisfied and contented – even the children!
From the outside, the main entrance of the Tower is grand and impressive. With the stately circular driveway, it’s easy to imagine stretch limos arriving with famous, prominent, or celebrated guests. In the coming months, some of those live entertainers include Clint Black, Carrie Underwood, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Dave Matthews Band. If you have an interest in any of the upcoming entertainment, act fast – tickets are selling out at warp speed.
The old and new sections of the resort are seamlessly connected. However, the first note of distinction is that the new section is completely smoke-free, and it will remain as such for the foreseeable future. Every single detail was well planned, researched and employees had a voice in the final selections of their work areas. With the tasteful design, even most esteemed guests will be dazzled. The stunning decorations include bright, colorful fresh floral arrangements in varying shapes and sizes. The décor is contemporary, opulent, and eye-catching. The walls and walkways are lined with a world class collection of paintings, drawings, and sculpture — created solely by Choctaw artists. Several works were exclusively commissioned for the new tower, and hotel guests receive a guide to the expansive collection upon check-in.
If you choose to spend the night, you’ll sleep easy in any of the impeccable and luxuriously appointed, spa-like accommodations. The Sky Tower includes 1,000 rooms ranging from luxury suites, traditional king, or double queen beds, as well as hospitality suites. Many amenities are included, such as HDTV, complimentary Wi-Fi, a coffeemaker, and free parking.
Novice and experienced gamblers alike will enjoy the expansive, well maintained and fully staffed gaming floor. Guests can spin the reels at any of the 3,300 classic, progressive, or high-stakes slot machines.
If you are seeking some live action, check out the 40 new table games that include craps, roulette, baccarat, pai gow, and everyone’s favorite – blackjack. Also, an all-new 30-table poker room with its own dedicated staff and guest services will ensure a good time is had by all.
Many bars and lounges are strategically placed throughout the resort. For a unique game-day experience, check out The League Bar, a quintessential hot spot for sports enthusiasts. The League houses 88 big screen TVS, and an unforgettable 100-foot video wall that weighs in at more than 13,000 pounds! Sports themed artwork from local Choctaw artists also adorns the walls. In the center of the gaming floor is Prizm Lounge. Designed as a central meeting place, it’s the perfect spot for guests to reunite with others in their party. Don’t miss the astonishing surface that separates light into an immersive spectrum of color.
In addition, The Sky Tower has an array of shopping, eating, and entertainment venues. It includes 2 new retail shops, 3 new restaurants, 2 new movie theaters with reclining seats and a three-acre tropical oasis – Aqua. This swimming and lounging paradise has an adult-only with swim-up bar and a family friendly pool with waterslides. Four outdoor areas for food and drinks round out the Aqua experience.
Due to weather-related construction delays, Aqua is closed, but is expected to open soon.
The two new retail shops are Envi, a premier boutique that carries designer merchandise and Essentials, a retail shop for Choctaw-branded souvenirs, apparel and assorted snacks and sundries. When hunger sets in, be sure to visit Salt & Stone for round-the-clock eats that feature the “SALT” (surf) and “STONE” (turf). Boasting unparalleled flavor and exquisite luxury is 1832 Steakhouse. The menu includes a vast selection of fine wines, and the unequaled steak and seafood dishes are expertly plated. Reservations are strongly suggested, and the restaurant is only open for dinner.
The entire Choctaw Casino and Resort is profusion of fun, food, and festivity. Whether visiting for business or pleasure, the merriment and cheerfulness abound. The people are friendly and accommodating, and each inquiry is answered with a smile.
No stay is complete though, without visiting the all-new Choctaw Cultural Center. Just minutes from the resort, the Cultural Center and is a lesson in the rich culture, history and experiences of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma and its community.
Today, the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma is thriving with nearly 200,000 people. They celebrate a vibrant heritage of resilience and spirit. Their mission is to empower each Choctaw to live a life filled with possibility. Some of their business endeavors help support the health and education of Choctaws.
by Gina Wiklund