By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski
Casino Del Sol is recognizing its 25 years in business this July by recalling the past, and considering the future.
“We’ve grown so much over the last 25 years,” says Kimberly Van Amburg, CEO of Casino Del Sol.
“Our hard work and commitment to provide Southern Arizona with the best in entertainment will continue to be our priority. We are looking forward to celebrating our employees and our guests who supported us through the years and can’t wait to see what the next 25 years holds.”
The party kicked off on June 28 with a concert featuring Intocable, Voz de Mando and Banda Machos at the AVA Amphitheater on the grounds of Casino del Sol.
Fireworks are set for Wednesday, July 3, followed by a performance by the Prince tribute show, Purple Reign, in the Casino del Sol Conference Center on Thursday, July 4.
The anniversary finale is on Sunday, July 7, when country star Chris Young takes the AVA stage.
The casino is giving away $25,000 to a Club Sol member who swipes their card between July 1 and July 27 to enter weekly drawings to win free play.
The legacy began when the Pascua Yaqui Tribe opened Tucson’s first casino, Casino of the Sun, in 1994. It’s a mile and a half east of Casino Del Sol.
“It was the original casino,” Van Amburg says. “It’s a small casino. It wasn’t even a full casino structure. They just had bingo in the early 1980s. Over the years, through the success of that, we were able to open Casino of the Sun in 1994.”
The Pascua Yaqui Tribe’s hospitality and entertainment enterprise has since grown to include Casino Del Sol and AVA Amphitheater in 2001, Del Sol Marketplace in 2005, the Resort, Spa and Conference Center at Casino Del Sol in 2011 and Sewailo Golf Club in 2013.
“Our 25th anniversary is a significant milestone that represents many accomplishments for our community. Over the last two and a half decades, we have built a hospitality enterprise from the ground up,” says Robert Valencia, chairman, Pascua Yaqui Tribe.
“We are incredibly proud of what we built and are grateful for the continued support from our employees, guests, Tribal members, and the entire Tucson community.”
The growth continues into 2019 with Casino of the Sun’s new event center, the Sunset Room, and an expansion of Casino Del Sol’s Conference Center, both of which are now open.
The 73-space RV park is scheduled to open on August 1, according to Van Amburg. The new 151-room hotel, Estrella at Casino Del Sol, is set for mid-November.
“We’re already enjoying the first two new projects—the Sunset Room at Casino of the Sun and the conference center expansion at Casino of the Sun.
“We’ve been getting groups and concerts in there. It’s been great.”