Rolling Meadows' fifth and final video gambling cafe moves closer to opening

  • Shelby's, a video gambling cafe, is scheduled to open at 2164 Plum Grove Road in Rolling Meadows.

    Shelby's, a video gambling cafe, is scheduled to open at 2164 Plum Grove Road in Rolling Meadows. Courtesy of City of Rolling Meadows

Updated 4/16/2021 4:18 PM

Rolling Meadows aldermen have given preliminary approval of a liquor license in what would be the fifth and final video gambling cafe in the city.

Interior renovation is underway inside a 1,500-square-foot tenant space within the Plum Grove Shopping Center. Called Shelby's, the new cafe at 2164 Plum Grove Road would have five video gambling machines, a dining area and food/beverage counter.


Officials from Des Plaines-based Laredo Hospitality, operator of some 50 Shelby's and Stella's Place locations throughout the suburbs, lobbied Rolling Meadows officials for approval last year, just as the city council was making revisions to the zoning code in response to a proliferation of the machines in town.

Those amended rules, approved last August, allow up to five video gambling cafes citywide and only two along the Plum Grove Road/Meacham Road corridor. The next closest cafe, Sally's, is in the Square Court Shopping Center, which is kitty-cornered from the proposed Shelby's.

Besides those establishments defined purely as gambling cafes, the new city rules allow up to a dozen bars and restaurants to offer video gambling as an accessory.

The city council's 7-0 first reading vote this week to award a liquor license to Shelby's follows the panel's 5-1 approval of a special use permit in December that will allow the business to operate.

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Charity Johns, CEO of Laredo Hospitality, said revised interior building plans are now being reviewed by city planners, after changes were made to bathroom doors to provide more privacy.

"We've done our demo, we're wheels up, and we're looking forward to being part of the community," Johns said.

A final, second reading vote on the liquor license is scheduled for April 27.

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