Atlantis Paradise Island casino welcomes first female president

The Atlantis Paradise Island resort casino in the Bahamas has a new president, but we’ve yet to learn exactly what happened to the last one.

On Monday, the Atlantis’ owners, Brookfield Asset Management, announced the hiring of Audrey Oswell as the resort’s new president and managing director. Oswell (pictured), who joined Atlantis last year and was appointed senior VP of sales in February, is the first female president the property has hired.

Oswell has over three decades of experience in the hospitality and gaming industries, including past stints as interim CEO of Seneca Gaming, president and COO at Caesars Atlantic City, and CEO of Resorts International Atlantic City.

Brookfield has yet to explain exactly what happened to Atlantis’ former captain Howard Karawan, who was abruptly shown the door last week just one year after he replaced Paul Burke as Atlantis president and managing director.

A source told the Bahamas Tribune that Brookfield and Karawan had decided to “go their separate ways” but offered no details as to what might have caused the split.

In July, Karawan told local media that Atlantis was preparing to spend up to $130m to gussy up the joint to keep pace with the new kid on the Bahamas block, the $4.2b Baha Mar, which had its soft opening in April. Karawan’s last recorded public utterance came earlier this month when he threw shade at Baha Mar’s inability to shelter its guests as Hurricane Irma bore down on the Bahamas.

A little further north of the Bahamas, the Bermuda Casino Gaming Commission (BCGC) got its first look at what its proposed casino industry might resemble when the Hamilton Princess Beach Club made its pitch to impress the judges.

The Hamilton Princess is one of four eligible casino hopefuls – along with the St. George’s Club, Fairmont Southampton and the Morgan’s Point hotel – although none of the four sites are guaranteed to eventually host gaming on their properties, and so far Hamilton Princess is the only one of the four to submit an application.

The pitch was made by Hamilton Princess Hotel Casino Limited, which has enlisted Century Casinos to manage the actual gaming operations. The Colorado-based Century has a gaming presence in Canada, the US, Argentina and Poland, as well as on over a dozen cruise ships.

The plan calls for a 9,500-square-foot casino floor, which will be filled with nearly 200 slot machines, 14 gaming tables and an automated roulette table. There would also be a special area for VIP gamblers featuring three tables and three electronic gaming machines.

Should the BCGC grant Hamilton Princess a provisional license, the property believes it can be taking wagers by November 2018. The new venue is expected to provide between 80-100 new jobs, the majority of which would go to Bermudians.