SunCruz Casinos

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SunCruz Casinos
Private (Owned by Ocean Casino Cruises)
Industry Transportation
Founded 1994
Defunct 2009
Area served
Florida, Myrtle Beach, SC
Key people
Robert Weisberg, Chairman & CEO
Products Cruises
Number of employees
1,000
Website http://www.suncruzcasino.com

SunCruz Casinos was one of many cruise lines that offered "cruises to nowhere," legally transporting passengers into international waters beyond the reach of federal and state gambling laws.

Four ships operated out of four ports including Jacksonville (SunCruz VII), Key Largo (SunCruz I), Myrtle Beach (SunCruz VIII), and Port Canaveral (SunCruz XII).[1]

On December 16, 2009, SunCruz Casinos was reported to be closing amid reports of owing $300,000 to the Canaveral Port Authority.[2] Parent company Ocean Casino Cruises filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy December 28.[3]

At the time of the filing of bankruptcy, there were about 300 full-time and part-time employees.[4]

History[edit]

In 1994 Gus Boulis, already a multi-millionaire by founding the Miami Subs sandwich shop franchise, bought a number of luxury yachts. He remodeled the yachts as casinos, and began to operate his "cruises to nowhere," sailing three miles from the Florida coast into what was then considered international waters.[5] There, out on the sea, passengers would gamble on poker, blackjack and slot machines. Boulis called his fleet of 11 ships the SunCruz Casino line. By the time he sold the company in 2000, SunCruz Casinos was earning tens of millions of dollars in annual profits, and employed over 2,000 people.

In September 2007, SunCruz discontinued operation at Palm Beach.[6] Service was subsequently discontinued at Daytona and Treasure Island.

Investigation[edit]

In the 2000s, lobbyists such as Jack Abramoff became involved illegally with the sale of the line. Boulis was murdered in 2001.

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ "SunCruz website". Retrieved 15 January 2018. 
  2. ^ http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/34454197/ns/local_news-orlando_fl/
  3. ^ http://www.cfnews13.com/Business/LocalBusinessHeadlines/2009/12/29/suncruzs_parent_company_files_for_bankruptcy.html
  4. ^ Price, Wayne T. (11 January 2010). "SunCruz offers apologies". Florida Today. Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 14A. 
  5. ^ New York Times retrieved June 8, 2008
  6. ^ "Port of Palm Beach statement". Retrieved 15 January 2018.