Sky River Casino announces and outlines expansion plans as it continues to set new standards of excellence in industry

Already home to gaming, entertainment, 18 elevated restaurants and bars, Sky River will expand to offer a hotel, day spa, pool, event space, and more

ELK GROVE – On June 7, 2024, Wilton Rancheria and their partner Boyd Gaming Corporation formally announced and outlined exciting expansion plans for Sky River Casino, which first opened on August 15, 2022. Conveniently located just off Highway 99 in Elk Grove, future expansion plans for Sky River Casino include an expanded gaming floor, additional High Limit room, a 300-room state-of-the-art hotel, luxurious spa, spectacular outdoor pool, and an innovative meeting, event and entertainment space. As an architectural highlight, a dramatic hotel atrium ceiling will allow for breathtaking views of the sky above – one of many features that pay tribute to the Tribe’s close connection to nature.

With work planned to begin on a new parking structure this year, the ambitious expansion plans will roll out in two construction phases as outlined below:

  • Phase 1 Expansion Plans

– Multi-story, 1,600 space parking garage

– Enhanced Valet service area and new Porte Cochere.

  • Phase 2 Expansion Plans

– 300-room state-of-the-art hotel

– Outdoor pool

– Day spa

– Multi-use event and entertainment space

– 400 additional slot gaming options

– Additional, elevated High Limit and VIP gaming area.

While timing is subject to change based on construction, availability of materials, and weather- related variables, Phase I is expected to be completed by summer 2025 and Phase 2 by early 2027.

“We are very proud of what we have created – and continue to imagine – at Sky River Casino,” said Jesus Tarango, Wilton Rancheria Chairman. “With these expansion plans now firmly in process, the future is even brighter for the Elk Grove community, greater Sacramento area, and for generations of Wilton Rancheria people, the only federally recognized Tribe in Sacramento County. I want to thank the Tribal Elders and citizens of Wilton Rancheria for their support. We would also like to gratefully acknowledge the invaluable support extended by the City of Elk Grove, Sacramento County, and our state leaders, along with the incredible reception by an amazing and welcoming Northern California community.”

Tribal members prepare to plant Wilton Rancheria flags to celebrate the anniversary of their Tribe gaining federal recognition from the United States government. The Wilton Rancheria seal on the flag features important symbols to the Tribe, including the acorn, land, the eagle and salmon.

Wilton Rancheria currently possesses nearly 140 acres of land, including Sky River Casino and the parcels surrounding it. This includes 77 acres of the Tribe’s traditional Rancheria land which was recently put into federal trust with plans to develop Tribal services and preserve its great cultural legacy.

“These expansion plans for Sky River will continue to set new standards of excellence for casino experiences not only in the Sacramento area but throughout Northern California and beyond,” said Sky River Casino President Michael J. Facenda. “Once we have a world class hotel, event space and other highly desirable amenities, we will offer a destination of appeal to guests who will travel in search of elevated experiences that are highlighted by lively gaming and entertainment, amazing culinary options, upscale overnight accommodations, and relaxing environments.”

Currently, Sky River Casino employs approximately 1,600 team members (more than half of whom are Charter Team Members who have been with Sky River since before doors opened nearly two years ago). With these expansion plans, approximately 200 new job opportunities will be created to accommodate the new offerings, amenities, and experiences.

In a brief interview with media, Wilton Rancheria chair Jesus Tarango expressed excitement at the upcoming developments at Sky River Casino, saying that the upcoming phases were part of the promises made by the tribe when the project was originally envisioned, which they are now happy to say they are executing via the new development phases.

Tarango revealed that Sky River Casino and the Tribe have been happy to coordinate with cities, counties, local officials and agencies, including working on traffic mitigation as the new projects unfold. He also said that they have a great relationship with the City of Elk Grove Police Department and local sheriffs who help protect the entire city as well as their patrons.

Sky River Casino has impacted the Tribe and the community as well, according to Tarango. Within Wilton Rancheria, Tarango is happy to see Tribe members able to purchase homes for the first time, get out of debt, get healthcare and take care of themselves. The Tribe, through Sky River Casino, has also involved itself in charity and community events, including those related to youth and the fire department and law enforcement, for battered women, and other charitable projects.

“At the end of the day, it’s really us in reciprocation… for our people, it’s not about giving back to the ones that gave to you, but giving back to the ones that need it,” Tarango said.

The June 7 announcement of its expansion plans coincided with the Tribe celebrating the anniversary of it gaining back federal recognition which happened on June 8, 2009 after decades of struggle. Wilton Rancheria are primarily Miwok and Nisenan people, descendants of the Penutian linguistic family. The Tribe has currently more than 1,000 citizens, with 62% of its citizens living in Sacramento County.

Wilton Rancheria Tribal Chair Jesus Tarango with an eagle, one of the key symbols in the seal of the Tribe.Photo by Joseph L. Peralta/AJ Press

The brief program announcing the Sky River expansion included remarks from Tribal Chair Jesus Tarango, Tribal Vice Chair Raquel Williams, Chairman Emeritus Raymond Hitchcock, Boyd Gaming President/CEO Keith Smith, Sky River Casino President Michael Facenda, City of Elk Grove Mayor Bobbie Singh-Allen, Sacramento County Supervisor Pat Hume, California State Assembly Member James Ramos and Sacramento Count Sheriff Jim Cooper.

For more information about Sky River Casino and its offerings, please call 916-866-0200 or visit www.SkyRiver.com. For more information about Wilton Rancheria, please visit www.WiltonRancheria-nsn.gov.

Sky River Casino was built by Wilton Rancheria in partnership with Boyd Gaming Corporation, which is managing the property for the tribe. The casino opened in August 2022 and includes 100,000 sq ft of gaming, 2,100 slot machines, 80 table games, and 18 elevated restaurants, bars, and lounge destinations. To learn more, visit www.SkyRiver.com.

Wilton Rancheria is proud to be the Capitol Tribe with its home in Sacramento County. The Tribe’s government is divided into four separate branches: a General Council, comprised of all voting members; the Office of the Chair and Vice-Chair, which administers all Tribal departments and programs; the Tribal Council, which enacts legislation and oversees the budget; and the Tribal Court, which hears all cases and controversies under the Tribe’s jurisdiction. To learn more, visit www.WiltonRancheria-nsn.gov.          (Advertising Supplement)

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