Sapphire Lounge & Casino

Sapphire Lounge & Casino and Sapphire Liquors will open next month at the Montana Sapphire subdivision on Shiloh Road. 

ERIK OLSON/ Gazette staff

The owner of a new casino lounge and liquor store on Billings West End said he’s aiming to open next month, before Thanksgiving.

Sapphire Lounge and Casino and its sister shop, Sapphire Liquors, will occupy about 3,100 square feet in the Montana Sapphire development on Shiloh Road, owner Kevin Welter said.

Although it’s two doors down from another gambling spot, Dotty’s Casino, Sapphire is in a great spot to attract customers, Welter said.

“The exposure on Shiloh, obviously. Everything is moving out that area. We’ve got a patio with about six to eight tables that’s overlooking the conservation area,” he said.

Welter, 34, added that he will compete with Dotty’s a little, but hopes the two will draw customers from other casinos on the West End.

The Sapphire Lounge will be upscale, with 20 machines, good lighting and a growler fill station with eight rotating taps of Montana-brewed beers, he said.

The business won’t serve food but will have food trucks park in the spacious parking lot, Welter said.

Welter is part owner with his father, Corey Welter. Kevin Welter will at Sapphire Lounge daily, and the business will have 12 to 16 employees.

The Welters also own Magic City Casino, and Kevin Welter formerly ran the Alpine Casino, which is now closed. The restaurant inside the Alpine, Three Brother Bistro, is also closed.

The Welters control the liquor license for that business and plan to use it for a different casino, Kevin Welter said.

Sapphire Lounge & Casino will be open 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. seven days a week. The address is 4010 Montana Sapphire Dr. suites 5 and 6.

Dental practice on Zimmerman  

Construction of a new $2.5 million dentist’s office has begun at 1601 Zimmerman Trail on Billings West End.

The project is owned by endodontist Cameron Townsend and dentist Brady Keller. They have said they’re partnering with periodontists Brian and Amy Fuller and orthodontists Adam and Marlene Ostby on the project, known as KT Dental Properties.

The group bought last year the 1.4-acre parcel, which was originally farmland owned by the Zimmerman family. They farmed in the valley for decades and started selling parcels to developers in the early 2000s.

Clinic adding parking

A former Underriner Motors lot will become employee parking for Billings Clinic.

Construction is underway at the lot at the corner of North 30th Street and Sixth Avenue North to build an 88-space lot, clinic spokeswoman Julie Burton said.

The lot will add a total of 40 parking spaces to the Billings Clinic campus, she said. The space had formerly been used for some parking.

Space will be upgraded to include paving, striping and other amenities, she said.

The lot will be finished in November and fenced with controlled access.

Joliet coffee shop opens

Revenant Coffee opened Monday along Highway 212 on the south end of Joliet, owner Casan Roth said.

Roth had bought the building in 2014 at 602 W. Front St., which was formerly a salon. She operated the salon for about a year before it closed, then decided to try something else at the spot.

“I thought, I’ve worked in coffee shops, I’ve managed a coffee shop, and that’s what this area needed,’” said Roth, 27, who lives between Billings and Laurel.

Revenant Coffee sells drip coffee, mochas, Americanos, lattes, smoothies, teas and other drinks. Most customers are commuters driving from Red Lodge into Billings for work, she said.

Revenant Coffee is open 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 6 a.m. to noon Friday and Saturday and 8 a.m. to noon Sunday. It’s located next to 212 Bar & Grill.

Billings car shop expands

The owners of Big Sky Collision Center in Billings announced last week they have purchased Crash Repair Center in Livingston.

CEO Matthew McDonnell said the owners, the McDonnell Group, are looking forward to entering the Livingston market. The McDonnell Group also owns Big Sky Collision Center and A&D Auto Body in Bozeman.

Crash Repair Center will continue to operate under the same name. Destry and Chris Jacobs of the McDonnell Group will take over operations, McDonnell said.

The McDonnell Group has 68 employees.

Haikus from the valley

Goodbye till next year

Beartooth Pass. Load up some snow

to thrill the skiers.

Editor's note (Oct. 17): The hours for Sapphire Casino were incorrect in a previous version. This version is correct.