The newest casino in the state — and the first in Arizona for the Navajo Nation — is set to open Memorial Weekend.

The Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise announced that the grand opening of its Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort, located along I-40, exit 219, just east of Flagstaff, is set for  May 24.

Grand opening events throughout Memorial weekend will highlight Navajo traditions while showcasing the property’s state-of-the art gaming, luxurious resort accommodations, fine dining and culturally infused architecture.

The 267,000 SF facility, built by Hunt Construction, showcases Navajo culture and features commissioned artists’ original paintings and other artworks. The structure was designed by the Friedmutter Group of Las Vegas.

“Twin Arrows will create a new benchmark in gaming entertainment while improving the economic health and prosperity of the Navajo Nation,” said Derrick Watchman, CEO of the Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise. “As northern Arizona’s premier destination casino resort, Twin Arrows will create approximately 800 full-time jobs with an annual payroll of $20M, including salaries and benefits.”

Phase one of the $230M facility includes 1,089 slot machines, 18 table games and 12 poker tables, live Keno, a 5-story hotel with 90 rooms and suites, 16,000 SF banquet and conference center, fully equipped fitness center, heated indoor pool and six distinct dining concepts.

The casino will operate 24 hours per day, seven days a week. The resort also offers 24-hour complimentary valet parking featuring a unique “Valet Express” mobile phone service system.

Hunt Construction recently completed the hotel, conference center, swimming pool, fitness center and casino floor with rotunda, food court, steakhouse, oyster bar, sports bar, 24-hour café, gift shop and coffee shop.

More than 400 Navajo construction workers were employed on the project that began September 2011. The Navajo Tribal Utility Authority also worked to prepare the site for construction with the installation of a wastewater treatment plant that recycles well water for landscaping, a cell tower and electric substation that brings additional power to nearby residents and businesses.

“We are grateful to The Friedmutter Group of Las Vegas and Hunt Construction Group for their attention to detail and willingness to incorporate the vision of our team in the exterior and interior construction, designs and décor,” Watchman said. “We are proud to be able to incorporate so many aspects of our art and culture in the Twin Arrows property.”

Amenities include:


>> The main drive and porte corchere are expressed architecturally as the upward movement of ancestors through the Four Worlds.

>> A water feature at the entrance symbolizes the rising waters that motivated the people to move up and seek new worlds to live in.

>> The hotel tower features a dimensional over-scaled weave pattern, suggesting the work of hands and hearts; the weaving of baskets, textiles, and song.

>> The texture and lines sweeping over the façade of the lower casino buildings relates to the winds sweeping across the Nation bringing life to the Dine.

>> A cascading glass entry to the south of the casino façade recalls the Grand Falls of the Little Colorado River.


>> At the main entrance of the casino guests enter through a black textured stone vestibule, a contemporary abstraction of the First World.

>> The entrance also contains stone soffits that depict the 1st World of the Insect people, the 2nd World of Bluebirds and Swallow people, the 3rd World of the Grasshoppers, and the 4th World where Man and Woman came to be.

>> A custom chandelier in the rotunda depicts the vertical rise of the people through each world. Hand blown glass rings represent the colors of each world. Droplets of crystal cascade through the rings like water two chrome tubes in the center of the rings symbolize the reeds that were used to enter through the hard sky of the world.

>> The rotunda floor mirrors the chandelier in an infinity circle reflection.


>> The casino’s theme is “The Glittering World.”

>> Its ceiling depicts a Navajo night sky and the Milky Way with custom decorative chandeliers.

>> At the center of the casino a VIP area is surrounded by a custom silver and bronze metal chain drapery. The metal drapery creates an oval with grass and reed designs.

>> Crystal lanterns surround the outer layers, and inside a reflective chandelier with independent rays of light form a central ceiling feature.

>> Additional detail throughout the casino recalls the glittering Dook’ o’osliid, the western mountain that “light shines from within”.

Other Interiors

>> Custom commissioned artwork is featured throughout the resort, casino and conference center.

>> Each restaurant has a different theme celebrating Navajo traditions.

>> Resort rooms and suites (available in three different configurations) feature a contemporary décor. Select rooms have panoramic mountain views and the iBahn entertainment system, which features the latest technology in room entertainment (a personalized multimedia HDTV experience).

>> The resort is further embellished with the sacred colors of the Navajo Nation and the unique basket weave design

Phase 2

The HOZHO Spa will open in early 2014. HOZHO is a Navajo concept meaning ‘balance and beauty’. The spa will be connected to the existing heated indoor pool and will include two additional mineral pools and a tranquility room. Guests will also be able to select from a variety of therapeutic massages and extensive line of SPA oils and treatments. An additional 110 rooms and suites will also be added to the resort during Phase 2.

“Ya at’eeh. We welcome Arizona residents and tourists to experience our world-class gaming and array of dining options this summer,” said Maureen Curley, chairwoman of the Board of Directors for the Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise. “We are committed to building business opportunities for the Navajo Nation as we provide an economic boost to the entire region and put Navajo people to work.”

Twin Arrows is the fourth casino of the Navajo Nation Gaming Enterprise. More information on Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort can be found on Facebook at