PHOENIX – Construction crews at the Wild Horse Pass Hotel & Casino placed the last beam on top of the hotel's 10th floor this week marking a milestone for this building project on Interstate 10 south of Ahwatukee.
Tribal member Tim Terry gave a blessing followed by the hoisting of the American flag to the 10th floor by members of the Ira H. Hayes American Legion Post 84 out of Sacaton. They also hoisted the Gila River Indian Community tribal flag.
Topping off a new building is a tradition in the construction industry. It is traced to the ancient Scandinavian practice of placing a tree on top of a new building to appease the tree-dwelling spirits of their ancestors that had been displaced.
The Wild Horse Pass Hotel & Casino is scheduled to open at the end of next year and expected to bring 750 new jobs to the area. Gila River Indian Community officials say the jobs will add more than $15 million in payroll into the area and another $5 million when tips are counted.
There will be two featured restaurants: Shula's Steakhouse, owned by legendary pro football coach Don Shula, and Scottsdale's Ling and Louie's Asian Grill. There will also be a Las Vegas-style nightclub and a 1,400-seat showroom.
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