The Beau Rivage Resort & Casino — the largest employer in Biloxi, Miss. until Hurricane Katrina forced its closure last year — has re-opened with a redesigned casino and updated rooms.

“We have absolute confidence that Biloxi will once again be a top tourist destination,” Robert Baldwin, president and CEO of Mirage Resorts, said during a re-opening ceremony Aug. 29. U.S. Senator Trent Lott, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, Biloxi Mayor A.J. Holloway and MGM MIRAGE executives turned out for the event, along with approximately 3,800 workers employed at the property resort.

With a $550 million reconstruction program under its belt, the new Beau offers 1,740 guest rooms and suites, a redesigned casino, seven restaurants, four lounges and bars, seven retail venues, spa and salon, pool and a 50,000 sq. ft. meeting and convention center. Additional restaurants, retail outlets and attractions will be introduced throughout the fourth quarter.

Gaming has long been a catalyst for economic development in the region, spurring tax income and capital investments. Recovery of the tourism and entertainment sectors is crucial to the success of Mississippi’s rebuilding efforts, according to Gov. Barbour. “I applaud the courage, commitment and determination of the Beau’s management and employees to get back to work.”

Beau Rivage is a wholly owned subsidiary of MGM Mirage (NYSE: MGM), which owns and operates 23 hotel and gaming properties in Nevada, Mississippi and Michigan, with investments in three other properties in Nevada, New Jersey and Illinois.