Aspers, first of the supercasinos, opens in the UK
December 2, 2011
Aspers Casino Westfield Stratford City opened yesterday, the first ever project in the UK to take advantage of the 2005 Gambling Act, which permits the development of “supercasinos.”
At 65,000 square feet, and offering 40 table games, 150 slot machines, 92 electronic betting terminals and a 150-seat poker room, Aspers becomes the largest casino in the UK. The project, which is located in east London in Europe’s largest in-town shopping center, is the first to open since the Gambling Act became law. UK’s casinos had previously been limited to 20 licensed machines per establishment. In another break with the past, the casino is open 24 hours a day and players are not required to register.
A joint venture between the Australian gambling group Crown and Damian Aspinall, Aspers will operate along the lines of a typical convenience gaming establishment. The core market will be "high volume, low spend", with a projected average stake of £15-20 a person, Richard Noble, chief operating officer of Aspers, told The Guardian. "We call what we do 'entertainment betting', rather than particularly aiming for high-stakes, professional betting,” said Noble. “We class this as a space for fun entertainment, that's all.”
In addition to gaming, Aspers also offers an 80-seat restaurant and two bars, including a 24/7 sports bar. The casino is easily reachable via the tube from the center of London, with the nearby Stratford Regional Station connecting directly to the Central and Jubilee Lines.
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