Fond du Luth Casino

The Fond du Luth Casino needed to address existing operational needs, while delivering a major visual upgrade inside and out. The existing building was an 86 year-old, 3-story structure, constructed by Sears-Roebuck in 1929. In 1986, the Fond du Lac Tribe reopened the building as Fond du Luth Casino. I-5 was brought in to create a high impact concept design that would transform the tired interior into a high-energy entertainment destination. 


Location: Duluth, Minnesota 
Duration: 20 Weeks
Project Size: 33,000 sf
Services: Design Build Renovation 

Our Approach

Conceptual Design & Planning

I-5 created multiple design options, showing color palette selections to produce a dramatic change for the property. This included a dramatic programmable lighting system that allowed for an extensive array of thematic scenes. The project included changing the 1st floor gaming area into a non-smoking section, while the 2nd floor accommodates smoking guests. Each floor received a completely new look, along with layout changes to create better flow, and a much more comfortable, exciting, and enjoyable gaming experience.


 The unique ceiling elements above the columns integrate a programmable color changing LED lighting system, which gave Fond du Luth endless options for their presentation. The new design also included an improved slot layout for each floor to give a total of 730 machines, while providing a more comfortable layout and a standard spacing.

The new exterior design used a color changing LED system for a dynamic, eye-catching presentation with virtually unlimited color options, which can be programmed for special events, holidays and game days.  

Build & Install

I-5 created a plan to expedite the construction time frame to be a total of 5 months. Included in this 5 months was the pre-construction planning and the offsite decor manufacture. As the initial conceptual designs were being established, a team was assigned to the project, consisting of a specialist from the design, architectural, decor engineer, and construction departments. Each team colaborated to create the smoothest overall plan for this project. The manufacturing and pre-assembly of all the specialty decor and theming elements happened offsite, in I-5's state-of-the-art-facility. Each element of the design was fabricated directly from the digital design files through use of precision computerized equipment to ensure absolute integrity and the highest degree of finish quality.

The onsite demo and MEP work proceeded concurrently with this offsite construction to minimize the time spent onsite. This allowed the project to complete earlier than planned, with better quality for the project.  

Finished Project

By performing the project in a design build format, everything was able to be done in a compressed timeframe. As onsite demo and construction was happening, offsite constuction of the major design elements was underway as well. As phases of the project were ready, floor to ceiling finsihes went in, allowing these areas to open faster than industry standard.  

“The grand opening went well and we are getting so much positive feedback on the décor and layout from our guests! I-5’s dedication and hard work on this project has been greatly appreciated. We are all so truly pleased with everything.  Awesome working with you and your team!”

– Michelle Reynolds, Assistant Casino Manager

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