Isle of Capri

Isle of Capri CEO speaks at annual Magnet luncheon

Friday, January 7, 2011 ~ Updated 3:23 PM

By Melissa Miller ~ Southeast Missourian

James Perry
(photo provided)

Isle of Capri Corp., CEO James B. Perry shared his vision for Cape Girardeau's future as local business leaders celebrated a year of economic development efforts Friday during Cape Area Magnet's annual luncheon.

When Isle examined potential casino sites, the company wanted to make the whole area where it was located a regional destination, Perry said.

"What made this project successful is our shared vision. That makes Cape Girardeau a place where we want to do business," Perry said.

Perry oversees Isle's 15 casino properties in six states. He previously worked as an executive with Trump Entertainment Resorts, Inc. and Argosy Gaming Company.

"Customers come to a riverboat for about 3 hours, our goal is to make their visit to downtown Cape a six hour visit," he said.

Isle's $125 million casino development plan, currently under review by city officials, includes a second phase to construct a hotel in the future.

"The key to building a hotel is transforming a three hour experience into a six hour experience because once we do, it becomes a place to come for a couple of days," Perry said. "We will start to build an entertainment district down there that will be the envy from St. Louis to Memphis and from Branson to wherever it is in the east… I guess it's Louisville."

Along with bringing the largest capital investment by a private company in the city's history, Isle of Capri's new casino is expected to create 450 jobs.

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