NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — The Pamunkey Indian Tribe is intending to bring a world class resort casino and spa to Norfolk, city officials say.
Mayor Kenny Alexander said in a statement the tribe’s decision validates Norfolk “as an emerging destination for tourism in the mid-Atlantic.”
“We are excited about the interest of the Pamunkey Indian Tribe in Norfolk. I have enjoyed getting to know Chief Gray, and his team, over the past year and I look forward to growing this relationship as negotiations continue.”
Pamunkey Chief Robert Gray said in a letter to Alexander his tribe believes they have found a location along the Elizabeth River for the region’s first casino. It could be built on a current parking lot nestled between Harbor Park and the nearby Amtrak station.
“If we are able to reach a deal and you were to stay in the hotel there, you be able to look down into the stadium and watch a game,” said Jay Smith, spokesman for the.Pamunkey Tribe.
The tribe is negotiating 20 acres of land from the city. The resort would include a hotel, restaurants, luxury spa and a possible entertainment venue.
“The tribe has always said that we want to go where we are welcome and Norfolk has certainly been very welcoming,” Smith added.
Pamunkey Chief Robert Gray added after a long process to find the perfect site, it was found in Norfolk.
“Norfolk is great destination,” Smith said. “We think with the tourists that will want to come to the area as well as its proximity and transportation access to interstates makes this property in particular very appealing.”
The deal is far from done. The two sides have to come up with a price and then it has to be approved by the federal government.
Pamunkey leaders believe the casino will have an huge impact on the entire Hampton Roads economy.