Relaxation and Recreation

In September, I accepted an invitation to visit Belterra Casino Resort & Spa in Florence, Indiana. With work underway on Tropicana Evansville’s $50-million investment to move the casino ashore, I was curious about what Indiana’s nine other casinos were doing. I knew Belterra was a Pinnacle Entertainment property, and I had been impressed the prior year by one of its sister establishments — Ameristar Casino Resort Spa in St. Charles, Missouri.

Situated on the Ohio River in Switzerland County, Belterra is about a three-hour drive from Evansville; it is less than 45 minutes from Cincinnati, and approximately a one-hour drive from Louisville, Kentucky.

Belterra is the largest casino resort hotel in the state. It includes 38,000 square feet of casino space on the 370-foot-long Miss Belterra riverboat. It houses 608 newly renovated guest rooms and suites; seven food venues; retail stores; a full-service spa and salon; a 1,500-seat entertainment showroom; an 18-hole, Master Golf Architect Tom Fazio-designed golf course; and more than 50,000 square feet of meeting and conference space and other amenities. The casino offers several non-smoking areas including a non-smoking poker room. The recent renovation also included the addition of pet-friendly accommodations for dogs less than 25 pounds.

“At Belterra we pride ourselves on offering a complete resort experience with great amenities and excellent service,” says Sue Ascanio, vice president and general manager. “Belterra isn’t just about the casino or a single thing to do here; we are about an overall experience for anyone seeking a getaway.”

Dining choices are plenty. For dinner, I enjoyed 19 Steak & Seafood, the premier dining venue at the resort. My bone-in filet was very good.

Other than Victoria National Golf Club in Newburgh, Indiana, Belterra is Southern Indiana’s only other Fazio-designed golf course. Ranked by Golfweek as one of the Top 30 Casino Golf Courses in the U.S., the championship course offers naturally contoured elevation differences of up to 65 feet, with views of Indiana ridges, the Ohio River, and Log Lick Creek in Vevay, Indiana.

Beleza (Bay-lay-za) Spa and Salon offers a complete menu of salon, skin, and massage treatments. Rounding out the resort setting is an attractive pool lined with updated chaise lounges and private cabanas, and tiki bar service available.

Guests venturing into Cincinnati can take advantage of packages offered at Belterra Park Gaming. Originally opened in 1925 as Coney Island Racetrack and later known as River Downs Racetrack, Belterra Park Gaming thoroughbred racing stakes calendar runs this year April 29 to Oct. 8; the park is open year-round for gaming-machine entertainment, dining, and shopping. I dined at Favorites Steak & Pasta, which affords great views of the track. Summer concert-goers to Riverbend Music Center in Cincinnati will recall the amphitheater being next door to Belterra’s thoroughbred racetrack and gaming facility.

Tours have sold out months in advance — visit the IMA website before you go and book in advance.

When You Go

Belterra Casino Resort & Spa

Belterra Park Gaming

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