OKANA includes a riverside hotel, spa, outdoor adventure lagoon, amphitheater, indoor water park, restaurant, First Americans Retail Gallery and conference center.
Oklahoma City, November 9, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Governor Bill Anoatubby Chikasso and tribal, state and Oklahoma City leaders attend the official groundbreaking ceremony for the OKANA Resort and Indoor Water Park.
Located along the Oklahoma River near downtown Oklahoma City and adjacent to the First American Museum, OKANA will be a $400 million tourist destination designed to continue Oklahoma City’s economic development momentum.
“We expect the OKANA Resort & Indoor Waterpark to be an important economic driver of job growth and opportunity for everyone in the region,” Governor Anoatubby said. “We celebrate the continuation of strong partnerships between city and state officials and private organizations essential to bringing this important tourism and hospitality venue to central Oklahoma.”
The first phase of the project will develop approximately 40 of the 140 acres of land owned by OKANA MDE, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Chickasaw Nation.
This 11-story, 404-room hotel offers guests luxurious accommodations, riverside and lagoon views, and is close to downtown Oklahoma City and the Boathouse District. Room sizes range from 420 to 720 square feet, more spacious than traditional hotel rooms.
A 4.5-acre outdoor adventure lagoon designed for relaxation and play is centrally located. It consists of one main body of water with a sandy beach and two smaller bodies of water. Pedestrian bridges extend across the body of water, allowing guests to easily move throughout the property.
The resort also features 12,000 square feet of family entertainment center, over 100,000 square feet of two-story indoor water park, 39,000 square feet of conference center space, a spa, and a golf simulator. The resort is surrounded by a range of 36,000 square feet of retail and dining options.
The development also includes the 25,000-square-foot First Americans Retail Gallery and amphitheater. The gallery will provide a space for First American artists to display and sell their art and other creations. The amphitheater will accommodate 1,500 guests and there is an adjacent outdoor lawn area to be used for events or festivities. These venues are intended to augment the museum’s program with local artist performances, festivals, lectures and similar events.
Chikaso State Commerce Minister Dan Boren said the OKANA Resort will initially employ approximately 400 people and generate an economic impact of approximately $97 million per year in the first year of operation. The 10-year economic impact of the development is estimated to exceed $1 billion. Eventually, full-time employment is projected to expand to 800 direct and indirect jobs per year, with salaries of approximately $320 million over 10 years.
According to a study conducted by Hotel & Leisure Providers, about 1,400 jobs will be associated with the project during the construction phase and salaries will be around $80.7 million.
“The projected 10-year tax impact of this project is $107 million for Oklahoma, $86.7 million for Oklahoma City and $3.2 million for Oklahoma County,” Boren said.
“Projects of this scale will require collaboration between government and business leaders at the tribal, state and local levels to come to fruition. We appreciate the commitment of everyone involved to help make this development an important one. “Landmarks of Oklahoma and Oklahoma City”
A groundbreaking ceremony was held at the site on October 31st. The development is expected to open in early 2025, pending construction delays.
Boren said OKANA will easily connect with the Boathouse District and the new Oklahoma River Cruises Ferry Landing. Additional access to the area is available via trail systems on both the north and south sides of the river. Located right on the Oklahoma River, this hotel sits in the front row of the starting line of the 2,000-meter course at the National Center for High Performance in American Rowing.
Wynne/Jackson, a Dallas-based real estate development firm, is assisting with the development design of the entire project. New York-based Aquatic Development Group is a hotel developer and Wisconsin-based ADCI is a hotel and water park architect. Benchmark Hospitality will operate a hotel and water park that is expected to employ approximately 400 people. CallisonRTKL also supports the master plan of the entire project and works as an architect for the First Americans Retail Gallery and retail and restaurant components.
Oklahoma City-based Johnson & Associates assisted with site preparation and ongoing civil engineering work, and Tulsa-based Manhattan Construction Co. will build the resort.
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Source Chicasso Country