Casino to open near the Louisiana-Texas border By Joan Rattner Heilman / October 25, 2004 Share 1 -- LAKE CHARLES, La. -- A $365 million riverboat casino and luxury hotel, LAuberge du Lac, is scheduled to open here in the spring. Located on Contraband Bayou, right over the Louisiana/Texas state line, the site is about two hours from Houston.Designed for Texans who dont have casino gambling close to home, it will be the closest casino to Austin and San Antonio. It also will be the largest, single-deck riverboat casino in the U.S. But thats not all. The property will be a 227-acre resort, planned as a getaway and vacation destination, not just a place to gamble for the day and leave. Although there are two other casinos in town -- Harrahs and the Isle of Capri -- LAuberge management said it plans to make its development more extravagant.In addition to the riverboat casino, theres plenty more planned to lure visitors to this new establishment, including a huge hotel, a golf course and five eateries.Designed in Texas Hill Country style, LAuberge du Lac Hotel and Casino will be a 26-story complex with a gaming area of 48,490 square feet; a hotel with 746 rooms, including 100 suites; an 18-hole golf course designed by Tom Fazio; 40,000 square feet of meetings space; a pool with a sandy beach; and a lazy river.In addition, it will have a spa and fitness center, retail stores and top-name entertainment.Here are some of the details:The casino: The single-level riverboat will be 225 feet wide and 330 feet long, with a gaming area that will accommodate 60 table games and some 1,600 slot machines. The casino will be located just beyond the three-story, beamed-ceiling lobby that will feature massive, stone fireplaces; a ring of balconies; and large skylights. The hotel: The 746 rooms will include deluxe suites ranging from 550 square feet to more than 2,100 square feet, including a private villa complex adjacent to the hotel tower, each with a private court- yard and spa. Restaurants: The eateries will include a 400-seat buffet; an upscale steakhouse with fireplace and Western-themed murals; a 24-hour cafe, a noodle bar with Asian-fusion cuisine; a Cajun barbecue pub with an old-fashioned, roadhouse-style, honkytonk bar; an ice cream parlor; a coffee wagon; and several bars. Meetings and conference space: Designed in early 20th century arts-and-crafts architecture, the conference center will encompass about 40,000 square feet of meetings and conference space. Its ballroom, the largest in the area, will accommodate more than 1,200 banquet guests and can be broken out into six separate meetings areas. Two boardrooms and two meetings rooms, a banquet hall that seats 200, a 50,000-square-foot event lawn and a courtyard will complete the complex. The golf course: The par-71 course will be built around eight lakes and will have views of the surrounding marshes and Louisiana lowlands. There will be four sets of tee boxes on each hole, a driving range and a putting and chipping practice area. The pool center: It will feature a heated pool and a lazy river with swim-up bars. Guests will be able to access a large, green event lawn by one of two bridges. A 16,000-square-foot sandy beach and a large cabana complex will complete the scene. The spa and fitness center: With a full range of spa treatments, it also will include a hair salon and a cardio-fitness room. Not enough to keep you busy here? Guests will be able to bring their gear and do a little hunting and fishing or take a guided wildlife tour in this lush Louisiana countryside. Rates have not yet been set for this establishment. Additional information soon will be available at (866) 370-7222 or at www.ldlcasino.com.To contact the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.