Massachusetts Casinos to Close Overnight After New COVID-19 Restrictions Announced

  • MGM Springfield, Encore Boston Harbor, and Plainridge Park will close from 9:30pm until 5am
  • A stay-at-home advisory limits 10pm to 5am travel to essential activity
  • Masks are now required for anyone in an indoor or outdoor public space
  • Encore Boston Harbor has closed its hotel because of the new hours of operation
Electronic road sign reading, "Statewide order stay home"
New COVID-19 restrictions imposed by Governor Charlie Baker have forced Massachusetts casinos to remain closed overnight. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Update: Massachusetts will lift its 9:30pm curfew on casinos starting Monday, January 25. The state’s three casino properties will be able to resume 24/7 operations starting Friday, January 29.

No late night gambling

Massachusetts casinos are set to close from 9:30pm to 5:30am each night after new COVID-19 restrictions were announced by Governor Charlie Baker. The change will take effect on Friday, November 6 at 12:01am. The order is part of a stay-at-home advisory that limits travel between 10pm and 5am to essential activity.

Encore Boston Harbor, MGM Springfield, and Plainridge Park were some of the last casinos to reopen in the US after the COVID-19 shutdown in March. The venues have only been operational since mid-July, with restrictions in place to try and slow the spread of the deadly virus. An increase in positive cases caused the governor to make several mitigation changes this week, including the overnight closure of several business types.

Massachusetts casinos part of targeted interventions

Governor Charlie Baker has signed several executive orders this week in response to an increase in positive COVID-19 cases. Baker says the orders are targeted interventions.

requires us all to step up and make some changes”

“We want to do everything in our power to avoid reverting to phase one or phase two of our reopening plan. But that requires us all to step up and make some changes,” he said.

Along with the overnight stay at home advisory, the governor has changed the mask order. Anyone located in a public space must wear a mask at all times. This includes both indoor and outdoor activities.

The governor is asking the people of Massachusetts to limit private gatherings, as well. Baker says that if real sacrifices are made, both in private and commercial settings, the schools can remain open, the healthcare system will be able to continue functioning, and the economy will remain operational.  

The Department of Public Health recently identified that 121 communities in the state are at high risk of the virus. Each community has an average daily case rate that is higher than eight per 100,000, a rate that has persisted for a 14-day period.

COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts have increased 278% since Labor Day. The hospitalization rate has increased by 145%.

Encore Boston Harbor closes hotel

Encore Boston Harbor also announced this week that its hotel has shut down temporarily because of the reduced hours of operation. All hotel reservations have been cancelled. The overnight guest suspension will continue through December 15.

The casino has yet to reveal if the hotel closure will affect the number of employees working at the property. Back in August, the operator laid off almost 400 staff members.