The Seminole Tribe of Florida has officially launched the Hard Rock Bet in the state, giving players early access to online sports betting. This exclusive early access is available to those who have previously placed bets with the operator and to members of Hard Rock’s loyalty program, Unity by Hard Rock, who qualify.
The tribe’s announcement comes just a week after it revealed the relaunch of sports betting in Florida. The launch of craps, roulette, and sports betting is set to take place at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, Seminole Classic Casino in Hollywood, and Seminole Casino Coconut Creek on December 7th. The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tampa will follow on December 8th, and Seminole Casino Immokalee and Seminole Brighton Casino will go live on December 11th.
Hard Rock Bet made the announcement of early access in Florida on social media, stating that those who have previously bet with Hard Rock Bet Florida and qualifying Unity by Hard Rock loyalty members can now begin placing bets.
The Seminole Tribe faced legal challenges in its sports betting battle, but a glimmer of hope came when the US Supreme Court rejected a motion by West Flagler Associates to stay in October. This decision did not pave the way for unchallenged sports betting, but it did give the tribe an opportunity to launch, which it has taken full advantage of.
Hard Rock Bet had previously been live in Florida in 2021, after governor Ron DeSantis approved a gaming compact allowing the Seminoles to offer sports betting exclusively in Florida. However, this was stopped in December 2021 after the District of Columbia ruled that the compact violated the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.
Legal challenges continued when West Flagler filed a lawsuit against DeSantis and the Florida state legislature, questioning their authority regarding the gaming compact approval. The challenges escalated in August 2023 when the company filed a rehearing petition after losing a case against Secretary of the Interior Debra Haaland in June 2023.