Introduction to Massachusetts Slot Machine Casino Gambling in 2020
Massachusetts slot machine casino gambling consists of two large Category One resort casinos, one small Category Two slots parlor, and a cruise ship with an onboard casino sailing to international destinations.
Massachusetts has set a minimum theoretical payout limit and monthly return statistics are publicly available.
This post continues my weekly State-By-State Slot Machine Casino Gambling Series, an online resource dedicated to guiding slot machine casino gambler to success. Now in its third year, each weekly post reviews slots gambling in a single U.S. state, territory, or federal district.
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Relevant Legal Statutes on Gambling in Massachusetts*
The minimum legal gambling age in Massachusetts depends upon the gambling activity:
- Land-Based Casinos: 21
- Poker Rooms: 21
- Bingo: 18
- Lottery: 18
- Pari-Mutuel Wagering: 18
Since 2011, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has had three gaming regions, each with one casino resort gaming license:
- Eastern Region A: This license went to MGM, who constructed a casino in downtown Springfield. It opened on August 24, 2018.
- Western Region B: This license went to Wynn Resorts, who constructed Encore Boston Harbor in Everett. It opened on June 23, 2019.
- Southeastern Region C: No license awarded.
Massachusetts gaming regulations define large Category 1 casino resorts and small Category 2 slots parlors as follows:
- Category One casino:
- Pay a daily tax of 25% of gross gaming revenue
- Appropriate documentation of infrastructure improvements onsite and around the vicinity of the gaming establishment
- Category Two casino:
- Pay a daily tax of 40% of gross gaming revenue
- Pay an additional daily assessment of 9% of its gross gaming revenue
- Appropriate documentation of infrastructure improvements
- Limited to 1,500 gaming positions
*The purpose of this section is to inform the public of state gambling laws and how the laws might apply to various forms of gaming. It is not legal advice.
Slot Machine Private Ownership in Massachusetts
It is legal to own a slot machine privately in Massachusetts if it is 30 years old or older.
Gaming Control Board in Massachusetts
Casinos in Massachusetts
There are three non-tribal casinos and one cruise ship based in Massachusetts.
The largest casino in Massachusetts is Encore Boston Harbor with 2,800 gaming machines.
The second-largest casino is MGM Springfield with 2,550 gaming machines.
Commercial Casinos in Massachusetts
Massachusetts has three land-based casinos including:
- Encore Boston Harbor in Everett located 5 miles north of downtown Boston.
- MGM Springfield located 92 miles west of Boston and 26 miles north of Hartford, Connecticut.
- Plainridge Park Casino in Plainville located 36 miles southwest of Boston and 22 miles northeast of Providence, Rhode Island.
A cruise ship sailing out of the Port of Boston is the NCL Dawn. The ship offers onboard gambling via slot machines and table games when traveling in international waters.
Tribal Casinos in Massachusetts
In 2012, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe have an approved tribal-state gaming compact to offer tribal gaming in Southeastern Massachusetts. This Region C includes the counties of Bristol, Plymouth, Nantucket, Dukes, and Barnstable.
Subsequently, construction started on The First Light Resort & Casino in Taunton. However, progress has slowed due to lawsuits. Construction has been on hold since mid-2016. It is uncertain whether the casino will ever open.
Another tribal casino may yet open in Massachusetts as it would not require a state gaming license but instead be subject to the federal IGRA. The Aquinnah Cliffs Casino located in Martha’s Vineyard would offer 250 Class II, bingo-style competition games. However, it, too, has also been subject to lawsuits which has delayed its completion.
Other Gambling Establishments
As an alternative to enjoying Massachusetts slot machine casino gambling, consider exploring casino options in a nearby state. Bordering Massachusetts is:
- North: New Hampshire Slots and Vermont Slots
- East: The Atlantic Ocean
- South: Connecticut Slots and Rhode Island Slots
- West: New York Slots
Each of the links above will take you to my blog for that neighboring U.S. state to Massachusetts.
Our Massachusetts Slots Facebook Group
Are you interested in sharing and learning with other slots enthusiasts in Massachusetts? If so, join our new Massachusetts slots community on Facebook. All you’ll need is a Facebook profile to join this closed Facebook Group freely.
There, you’ll be able to privately share your slots experiences as well as chat with players about slots gambling in Massachusetts. Join us!
Payout Returns in Massachusetts
Massachusetts law has set a minimum theoretical payout of 80% for gaming machines.
Monthly revenue reports for each casino are publicly available from Mass Gaming. These reports offer monthly casino hold percentages as well as player win percentages. Note that these return statistics are referred to, somewhat misleadingly, as payout%.
The January 2020 player win percentage for each casino is:
- Encore Boston Harbor: 92.63%
- MGM Springfield: 91.60%
- Plainridge Park: 92.37%
In January 2020, Encore Boston Harbor has the highest player win percentage. However, for the prior five months, Plainridge Park had the highest payout win percentage.
Summary of Massachusetts Slot Machine Casino Gambling in 2020
Massachusetts slot machine casino gambling consists of two casino resorts, a slots parlor, and a cruise ship offering an onboard casino when traveling to international destinations.
The minimum theoretical payout for slot machines is 80%. Monthly actual return statistics are publicly available for each casino.
Annual Progress in Massachusetts Slot Machine Casino Gambling
In the last year, Encore Boston Harbor opened in Everett. This is the second year in a row that a large casino resort has opened in Massachusetts.
Related Articles from Professor Slots
Other State-By-State Articles from Professor Slots
- Online Resource: State-By-State Slot Machine Casino Gambling Series
- Previous: Maryland Slot Machine Casino Gambling in 2020
- Next: Michigan Slot Machine Casino Gambling in 2020