ROHNERT PARK, November 16, 2016 – A crowd of some 200 people streamed into the Graton Resort and Casino on Tuesday for a look at the Sonoma County casino’s new $175 million hotel.
There was a lot to look at, from the onyx lobby fountain with its hand-blown glass leaves to the spa with blue-tiled ice rooms and Jacuzzis, to the 200 luxe hotel rooms, outdoor pool with orange chaise lounges and cavernous meeting space.
“A thousand men and women built this facility in 14 months,” Greg Sarris, the tribal chairman of the Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria, told the crowd at the event, which marked the official opening of the hotel and other amenities making up the 342,000-square-foot expansion.
The Boathouse Asian Eatery restaurant, a well-known Rohnert Park restaurant, has relocated next to the hotel. The various changes led Sarris to describe the new complex as a “complete destination point.”
“This facility brings a lot of things to the table at once,” said Robert Eyler, chief economist for the Marin Economic Forum. “This is a major increase to the competition level in Sonoma County.
“Rather than being just a hotel, it’s an attraction where you can stay overnight,” the economist said. “If you stay at the Hampton Inn, which is relatively close by in Rohnert Park, they don’t have a restaurant. They don’t have a spa.
“Not only is there a demand effect on hoteliers, but restaurants and spas. It’s (the casino) trying to capture as much of the disposable income of tourists coming to Sonoma and the North Bay as they can,” Eyler said.
The spa and pool can be accessed via elevator from the rooms, which are presently available for a $200 introductory rate plus taxes and resort fee, but will go for $300-$400 for a standard room.
Orange and brown colors dominate the bold rugs in the lobby and the hotel rooms. Many of the bedcovers are orange as well, and the windows look out on the flat, lush green landscape of Rohnert Park.
One suite has a pool table, private bar and butler’s pantry; the butler is optional.
The spa has facilities for massage, hair and nail treatment, along with the ice room and Jacuzzi and a wet and dry sauna. Access to the spa is free with the rental of a room; otherwise, a day pass, including pool access, can be purchased for $35 weekday, $45 weekend.
In addition to the new pool, spa and hotel rooms, the resort now has 20,000 square feet of newly added event and convention space.
“We have a convention center that will seat 1,700 people for dinner,” Sarris said.
The expansion has generated 200 new permanent jobs, Joe Hasson, vice president and general manager of the resort, confirmed. The resort employs 2,000 people, he said.
Out of those 2,000 employees, 150 are Native American, Sarris said.
The Federated Indians of Graton Rancheria tribe has a little over 1,300 members, half of whom live within 50 miles of the Rohnert Park casino, Sarris said in 2015.
While the tribe owns the casino, it is operated by Las Vegas-based Station Casinos, which owns 20 casinos in southern Nevada, including the Palms resort. Station also manages a Native American casino in Michigan.
The Marin Independent Journal
Graton Resort & Casino
288 Golf Course Dr
Rohnert Park, California
Tel: +1 855-588-7100
Visit website: https://www.gratonresortcasino.com/