Encore Boston Harbor receives first of Massachusetts sports betting licenses

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission met for the third time this week to consider a casino based sports betting license Thursday, when they unanimously approved Encore Boston Harbor as the state’s first fully licensed sports betting operator. 

Members of the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) approved a so-called “Category 1” license for Encore Boston Harbor, which allows for in-person sports betting at the casino.

Encore managed to secure what its competitors, MGM Springfield and Plainridge Park Casino, had not in meetings on Tuesday and Wednesday — for the moment, at least. The commission voted 5-0 in a few different instances in favor of Encore Boston Harbor’s application.

It’s official! Encore Boston Harbor has been approved a sports wagering license! “Boston’s Sportsbook” will open in Early 2023. pic.twitter.com/uFAdkwhYBG

— Encore Boston Harbor (@EncoreResortBH) December 8, 2022

Encore officials will still need to obtain a certificate of operations and comply with regulatory conditions before bets can officially begin, the MGC said in a statement.

Wynn Resorts plans to offer legal sports betting at the facility through as many as 120 kiosks, as well as a WynnBET-branded sportsbook that features “a state-of-the-art 10-foot high and 123-foot-long video wall,” the Encore application says. 

The MGC previously set a goal of launching retail sports wagering at the three casinos in Massachusetts in January. This timeline would allow people to place bets on the Super Bowl in early February.

“More information on a universal launch day for retail sports betting will be released in the coming weeks,” the MGC said. State lawmakers agreed to legalize sports betting on Aug. 1.