Osage Nation Releases First Renderings of Proposed Casino and Hotel Project in the Lake of the Ozarks

The Osage Nation Indian Tribe is approaching phase one of the construction process of its hotel and casino resort in the Lake of the Ozarks. In the middle of the week, the Native American nations released some renderings of the proposed development.

As revealed by the Tribe in a news release, the first steps of the development will include the construction of a casino, sports bar, hotel, meeting space and a restaurant. The property is part of a new entertainment district that is to be established in the state of Missouri and was officially announced in 2021 by the Osage Nation. The massive development is expected to be built in a number of phases, with an investment of about $60-million in the region expected to create new jobs and to bring more tourists and fresh revenue to the Lake of the Ozarks community.

The construction of the project will be able to start after the Tribe receives the necessary approval from the US Department of Interior.

The Chairman of the Missouri Gaming Commission, Mark Leara, said that the Osage Nation Indian Tribe will first have to donate the property into trust and further explained that the trust is run by the Government of the US, the country’s Department of Interior, but not by the tribe. According to him, one of the possible complications that the Tribe could face in the Department of Interior is that they were skipping over into another state, and that could cause some problems with the approval of the project.

The Hotel and Casino Project Expected to Create New Jobs and Enhance Local Tourism Sector

The Osage Nation, which is currently situated in Pawhuska, Oklahoma, has been historically associated with the state of Missouri, with a population of about 200,000 members.

As mentioned above, on February 16th, the tribe provided some computer graphics of what the hotel and casino project is set to look like if built. The CEO of Osage Casinos, Byron Bighorse, shared that the release of the renderings was considered a big step by the members of the Osage Nation, at a time when the tribe’s Chief Standing Bear is heading significant cultural efforts in the lands of the tribe’s ancestors. Mr. Bighorse shared that the Tribe’s casino had been known nationwide for providing world-class gaming and bringing such a project to Lake of the Ozarks would be a great opportunity.

In their official release in October 2021, the Tribe announced their plan to establish the casino in the Lake of the Ozarks. At the time, the announcement was backed by many Missouri legislators because such a development project was recognized as a promising opportunity to bring jobs to the state and to attract more visitors as part of the state’s efforts to further enhance its tourism sector.

For the time being, the tourism sector in Miller County, where the project is set to be located, currently generates about $40.7 million and supports 682 jobs every year. In Camden County, tourism accounts for 3,958 jobs and $187.45 million.