While Florida and California typically get the most attention for their signature hospitality projects, Oklahoma is an up-and-coming destination for resorts and adventure parks. Beyond Frontier City and Quartz Mountain Fun Park in Oklahoma City, contractors are currently building several new developments that promise to draw even more tourists to the Sooner State.
Here are three big resort projects currently underway in Oklahoma:
Okana Resort & Indoor Waterpark Hotel
Location: Oklahoma City
Cost: $400 million
Status: Almost finished
The Chickasaw Nation’s Okana Resort & Indoor Waterpark Hotel in Oklahoma City is scheduled to top out on Nov. 2, according to The Journal Record. The 140-acre project includes a two-story water park, adventure lagoon, shops, restaurants, a conference center and an 11-story hotel along the Oklahoma River south of downtown. It will also include a First Americans amphitheater and retail gallery, where indigenous artists can showcase and sell art.
Engineering firm Johnson & Associates from Oklahoma City assisted with site preparation and civil engineering work while Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Manhattan Construction Co. is building the resort, according to the Chickasaw Nation. Aquatic Development Group, based in Cohoes, New York, is building the project’s aquatic amenities and helped with resort design.
The development broke ground in November 2022 and is expected to open by spring of 2024. A second phase could include an aquarium on the southeast corner of the resort.
Lakecrest Hotel and Casino
Location: Lake Murray
Status: Over halfway complete
The Chickasaw Nation’s resort at Lake Murray is more than halfway complete, according to an Oct. 11 press release. It features a 58,000-square-foot hotel with 89 rooms, a resort-style pool, business center and conference space. The development also includes a 70,000-square-foot casino with electronic games, table games, a restaurant and a bar.
Plans call for construction to be complete in the spring of 2024. The developer has not yet announced contractor information.
Cost: $2 billion
Status: First phase broke ground
A $2 billion-plus theme park and resort called American Heartland is coming to Vinita, Oklahoma, according to developer Mansion Entertainment Group. The 1,000-acre development, first announced in July, will include roller coasters, an indoor water park, a 300-room hotel and a 320-acre RV park. The park portion will feature six Americana-themed environments sprawled over 125 acres that host a variety of rides, live shows, waterways and concessions.
The first phase of the project, Three Ponies RV Park and Campground, broke ground on Monday, according to a press release. This $100-million portion will include 300 cabins and 750 RV sites, a clubhouse, a general store, swimming pools, multipurpose trails and a dog park.
Columbus, Kansas-based Crossland Construction Co. is the contractor for Three Ponies, which is scheduled to be completed in 2025. The developer has not yet announced contractor information for other phases.