Sun shines on Margaritaville Thursday

The family-oriented destination resort Margaritaville opens on Point Cadet on Thursday and Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich says it will help capture a new audience for Biloxi.

“In the two days I’ve been off since I was mayor I visited a family-oriented spot like this, and I have to say this one is very competitive,” said Gilich, who became Biloxi’s mayor 13 months ago. “I have to believe that there are some people who are passing us by for similar places in Orange Beach (Ala.) or Destin (Fla.) and beyond, and this is something that gives us a new opportunity to bring people to Biloxi. This gives us the total package in a big way.”

Margaritaville, which borrows its name and theme from the music of Pascagoula-born singer-songwriter-author Jimmy Buffett, is located in the former site of Casino Magic, but the site will bear little resemblance to the pre-Katrina resort. It will feature 373 guest rooms,  83 suites, restaurants and a host other amenities.

Time of the opening on Thursday has not yet been announced.

The resort features a family entertainment center, named Escape, that includes a 40-foot, two-story Volcano Rock Climbing Wall, allowing up to five people to climb up through the ceiling into the Margaritaville Restaurant above.

There’s a Sky Trail ropes course, for the adventurer at heart and a Sky Tykes ropes course, designed for the future adventurers ages 2-7. A Cloud Coaster, part zip line, part roller coaster, and the Nation’s first indoor zip-line roller coaster.

Visitors also will find two multi-game golf simulators packed with a library of 87 world class golf courses, six lanes of boutique bowling and hundreds of arcade games.

The complex also offers LandShark Bar & Grill, an indoor/outdoor destination, a perfect spot to catch the game or take in the views; Sweet Shack, an ice cream shop where over the top lemonades and ice cream libations featuring Dippin’ Dots, fresh fruit purees and candy toppings will delight the kid in everyone; and three spacious private party rooms available for any occasion. Additionally, hotel guests will also enjoy an authentic island-inspired experience with the resort’s 450-foot Lazy River, two water slides, swim up bar, lounge pool, Splash Pad and rope traverse.
Take a photographic tour of Margaritaville
See the Margaritaville website


Council, mayor to discuss La Quinta today

The issue of the La Quinta Inn and Suites, the hotel planned for front beach between Hopkins Boulevard and Seal Avenue, will be discussed this afternoon in a special meeting immediately after the 1:30 City Council meeting.

No votes are expected to be taken during the session, which is at City Hall and open to the public. Instead, councilmembers are expected to discuss the merits of an appeal filed by nearby residents and the composition of the city’s Architectural and Historic Review Commission, whose nine members currently include only four who live in an historic neighborhood, short of the required seven.

One proposal being considered by Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich: increasing the size of the AHRC to 12 members, with seven residing in historic districts. Gilich had initially asked five members to resign Monday in hopes of adding residents who live in an historic district. The composition of the AHRC has become an issue in the La Quinta appeal.

The AHRC, whose members are appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the City Council, reviews plans and development in historic districts and at landmarks in the city. The commission meets the second and fourth Thursday of each month in the auditorium of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Municipal Building.
See the agenda for the 1:30 council meeting
See the AHRC agenda for Thursday