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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
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DIAMOND JO. The Diamond Jo was the second floating casino in Dubuque County. Replacing the DUBUQUE CASINO BELLE on May 18, 1994, the Diamond Jo was owned by the Greater Dubuque Riverboat Entertainment Company. In October 1995 the original boat was replaced by a larger vessel.

The Greater Dubuque Riverboat Entertainment Co. in November 1997 signed a letter of intent to sell the Diamond Jo and its other assets (Portside Building and nearly 11 acres of land on the ICE HARBOR) to Cambridge Iowa Gaming Company a Las Vegas-based company, for $60 million. Cambridge agreed to contribute land and capital for the development of other facilities in the Ice Harbor. The company proposed the development of an outlet mall, hotel, conference center, restaurant expansion and movie theater. (1)

On January 21, 1999 the Diamond Jo was sold to AB Capital, LLC which became Peninsula Gaming LLC. The Diamond Jo stopped cruising in May, 2004 when the Iowa Legislature lifted the requirement that riverboat casinos cruise 100 days annually. The Diamond Jo became officially a permanently moored vessel in December, 2005. On December 7, 2008 the riverboat closed in anticipation of the opening of the DIAMOND JO CASINO, a land-based complex.



1. Krapfl, Mike. "Diamond Jo Draws a $60 Million Bit," Telegraph Herald, November 16, 1997, p. 1. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19971116&printsec=frontpage&hl=en