Closest Casinos Near Charlotte, North Carolina
Residents and tourists to Charlotte who want to gamble will have to travel because there are no “genuine” casino resorts within driving distance.
The Catawba Two Kings Casino in King Mountain, which opened about 35 miles west of downtown Charlotte, now has only 29 modular trailers with 500 electronic games (with 500 more on the way). On this property, the Catawba Tribe has plans develop a large 1/4 billion dollar casino complex (more on that below).
Despite the fact that the online casinos are popping up all across the country, North Carolina only has three casinos.
The fact that neighboring states to the north (Virginia) and south (South Carolina) do not have casinos adds to Charlotte’s casino isolation (at least not yet).
In the past, the Tar Heel state had horse racing tracks and even video poker machines, but currently the only gambling alternatives for Charlotte-area residents are lottery games, charity bingo games, or a road trip to one of three Indian casinos to the west.
Closest Casino to Charlotte, NC
The closest “genuine” casino to Charlotte is Harrah’s, which is owned by Native Americans and is three hours west of the city.
Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort is the nearest casino to Charlotte, located 165 miles west of the city.
The trip takes around three hours, with the most of it taking place on Interstate 26. If you travel this route on a Friday afternoon, though, it will take close to four hours.
The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians owns the casino, which is run and operated by Caesars Entertainment. In Murphy, they also own the Cherokee Valley River Casino. (I’ll get to that later.)
Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort
This casino is not only popular with Charlotte residents, but it also attracts a lot of tourists due to its proximity to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s entrance.
The 56-acre Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort is located just outside of Cherokee, North Carolina. It was North Carolina’s first casino, opening in 1997.
After a $330 million dollar addition in 2021, the 150,000 square foot multi-story casino is big and airy, with a contemporary ambiance.
There are 3,100 slot machines and video poker machines in all, with stakes as high as $500 per spin.
Although the casino only had machines when it first debuted in the 1990s, it currently has 150 live table games. Craps, blackjack, and roulette are among them, as are games like Let-it-Ride and Three-Card poker.
Electronic baccarat games and shared electronic roulette games, in which everyone plays at their own monitor while a communal dealer spins the roulette wheel, are also available.
A distinctive Asian-themed gaming area, a popular 32-table WSOP poker room, and the newest Caesars Race & Sportsbook – equipped with a 90-foot screen, betting windows, and betting kiosks – are all available.
The eleven eateries at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort feature everything from Dunkin’ Donuts to Ruth’s Chris Steak House. There’s also a casino café, a buffet, a Johnny Rockets, Starbucks, and quick-service pizza and Asian noodle eateries.
From the casino to the hotel, a covered walkway spans the picturesque Soco Creek. The four hotel towers of Cherokee’s Casino Resort feature a total of slightly over 1,800 rooms and suites.
An indoor pool and a newer outdoor pool (open seasonally) with a poolside bar and cabanas for rent are among the other features. The Mandara spa is 18,000 square feet of pure indulgence.
The adjoining 72-hole Sequoyah National Golf Club is also available to hotel guests.
The resort’s 3,000-seat events facility has attracted artists as diverse as Willie Nelson, Penn & Teller, Tony Bennett, and Lady Antebellum.
The “Ultrastar Mult-tainment Center,” which is a novel way of expressing “bowling alley,” is a new addition to Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort.
The Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center contains 24 lanes of bowling, a sports bar called Soundbytes, a large arcade, and a lounge called Strikes.
You will not be provided free alcoholic drinks here, unlike in Las Vegas casinos, although they are available for purchase. Please notice that alcohol service concludes every night at 2 a.m.
Self-parking is free, and the site is connected to two massive multi-story parking facilities. Valet parking, I assume, is also free.
Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort Address, Phone & Website
777 Casino Drive
Cherokee, NC. 28719
Catawba Two Kings Casino
This yet-to-be-built casino complex, located just 36 miles west of downtown Charlotte, will be the region’s nearest casino when it opens. We’re talking about a distance of 130 miles from Harrah’s Cherokee Casino.
The Catawba Tribe’s temporary casino, consisting of the aforementioned pre-fab trailers with 500 slots (but no table games) and totaling 29,000 square feet, debuted in July 2021. However, demand was so high that the casino decided to expand in December 2021, adding 500 additional electronic gaming machines.
The proposed casino will include 195,000 square feet, 1,800 gaming machines, over 50 table games, and a 1,500-room hotel, and will be located on a wide site at the junction of Kings Mountain Boulevard and I-85. By the end of 2022, the project should be finished.
Catawba Two Kings Casino Address, Phone & Website
538 Kings Mountain Blvd.
Kings Mountain, NC
Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino
The other casino resort in North Carolina is Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort’s younger sister.
The Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino, which is 223 miles from Charlotte and owned by the same Indian tribe, is located in Murphy.
While this casino is newer than the Harrah’s in Cherokee, it is significantly smaller, with roughly a third of the machine count and floor space.
Because of this, and the fact that it’s 58 miles distant, most Charlotte gamblers stick to Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort.
Other Casinos Near Charlotte
With the Commonwealth of Virginia authorizing four municipalities to provide casino gaming, a casino that is quite near to Charlotte is now available. Caesars Danville is located in Danville, Virginia, 138 miles northeast of Charlotte. An historic textile mill will be renovated as part of the $500 million project. They anticipate opening in November 2023.
The other casinos in Virginia will be in Bristol (162 miles away), as well as Norfolk and Portsmouth, which are further away.
A journey south to a casino boat is another option for gaming near Charlotte.
These two casinos, known as the Big “M” Casino, are located in Little River, South Carolina (just north of Myrtle Beach). The city of Charlotte is 183 miles distant.
The ships set sail (in foreign seas, outside the United States and state gambling rules) and return the following day. Riding aboard one of the Big “M” ships costs money, with weekday sailings starting at $20.