Seating suppliers boost technology and ergonomics to keep pace with the market's evolving needs
In the casino industry, it’s no great secret that the focus tends to be on the games, with operators in a constant and endless search for the latest and greatest slot and table concepts, ways to insure players keep coming back to them and methods to operate these games in a more efficient and effective fashion.
But with all this attention paid to the products at a customer’s fingertips, what’s right under their noses, or in this case their bottoms, can often go unnoticed. For such seemingly simple products, chairs and furniture have quite the complex task when it comes to gaming properties. Not only do they need to be designed with facility differentiation in mind, but they have to feature the flexibility and technology needed to integrate with the latest gaming advances and ensure customer comfort to foster increased play. Indeed, as slot machines and other gaming devices become more complex and interactive, so too does seating technology to meet both operator and consumer demands.
“As the games become more interactive, so should the seating experience,” said Ed Abadie, seating design engineer for Gary Platt Manufacturing, a Reno, Nev.-based supplier of high-end casino seating for slot machines and table games. “In addition to an emphasis on player comfort for longer game time, the seating should fully engage the player in the game experience. This can be done with the addition of sound elements, movement and other features tied into the gaming experience.”
Beyond the additions of sound and motion to chairs, a great deal of emphasis is placed on “contouring” the seat and backs using molded foam to increase player ease. With more comfort, comes more profitability, according to Abadie. “The gaming operators are becoming more aware of the ergonomics of the seating they buy, as they see the payback from seating that provides the players the support and comfort that keeps them seated and playing the games,” he said.
Another trend coming on to the casino seating and furniture scene is sustainable and environmentally-friendly designs.
“There is a conscious effort on our part to use components, such as covers, foam etc. that meet the ‘green’ criteria of low-emitting materials for air quality, as well as using manufacturers that practice low environmental impact in their production process,” Abadie said. “Using good quality components in our designs such as the proprietary molded foam, and covers, the serviceable life of the seating is extended beyond expectations. We are providing rehab services of customers’ existing seating, re-cycling the serviceable components as we restore the seating for a new service cycle.”
With all of these improvements, what used to be seen as a simple place to rest while a customer places their bets has quickly become a competitive market booming with new technology and innovation. Below is a look at some of the industry’s latest seats designed to wow customers while increasing play time and profits for operators:
GARY PLATT MANUFACTURING
For the past 12 years, Gary Platt has produced seating exclusively for casino applications including slots, table games, poker, bar-top and bingo. According to company press materials, Gary Platt was founded on the concept that a high-quality more comfortable chair would increase player’s time on device and, as a result, casino revenues.
Every Gary Platt chair is also hand-crafted to enhance the casinos interior themes, and engineered for durability with unsurpassed comfort.
The approach has netted the company its fair share of casino business. Recently, Valley Center, Calif.-based Valley View Casino has contracted for 2,200 Gary Platt chairs. The casino opted for the company’s Gazelle Royale chair for its 2014 remodel. The Gazelle Royale is a specialized ergonomic chair for slot machines and table games. The chairs also feature protective molding and an insert handle for easy player maneuverability.
Gary Platt believes its X2-Tended Play chair line will also prove a hit with casino operators and patrons. With the addition of ergonomic sculpting and plush toppers, the X2-Tended Play series creates more comfort, and player involvement, translating into longer play time.
The latest of the line, LIDO X2, has a new style and comfort and is built with the same rugged standards of performance Gary Platt is known for. The GX2 is also a new addition to Gary Platt’s very successful Gazelle Series. With newly added ergonomic contours and plush topping, the GX2 offers a similar look with added comfort. BX2 is an expansion from the original Barona Series offering added comfort and a look that will keep the users playing longer. And finally the SX2 is takes a simple and classic design and gives it a new ergonomic contour and comfort.
For over 65 years, Youngstown, Ohio-based Gasser Chair has been designing, building and perfecting the art of commercial seating, using the highest quality materials. Their new designs are not only stylish and comfortable, but also eco-friendly, according to the company’s website.
The popular Quantum series for slot games features flex-back technology, an elliptical protective edge, molded ergonomic seat cushions and a compound curve backs with lumbar. They have a four-leg solid oval aluminum base with mega glides for steady seating, along with a self-return swivel and round footrests with an eco-friendly powder coat finish.
Offering the widest variety, Gasser’s Players Choice 1 & 2 Series are specifically designed for maximum comfort and durability, with signature craftsmanship, cutting-edge technology and contemporary styling, no matter the player’s game of choice.
StylGame is an Italian manufacturing company specializing in creating seating for gaming. Famous for “reinventing the gaming environment,” StylGame’s exclusive Ergonomic Study has defined and solved ergonomic issues and presented customers with high-quality products that guarantee long lasting satisfaction, comfort and extended play time.
The new Royal Stool “Style” line has been created to improve players’ experience, physically and psychologically, assuring unique relaxation and fun. The seat and backrest structure is ergonomic, guaranteeing proper support to the entire body along with greater comfort for the player. The chairs have also been enhanced with a more appealing design with rounder shapes and curvy seats.
Recently, StylGame upgraded its project design and manufacturing services for slot machine manufacturers. According to company press materials, these seating products are high-tech and can be customized to a specific slot line’s design and materials. Some of the cutting-edge products and services offered by StylGame include:
- An interactive seat with motion simulator, equipped with an electronic board to interface with the slot machine, allowing the seat to move in all directions. The motor system can be traditional or incorporated within the seat.
- Audio amplification with traditional technology or with vibrating transducers that diffuse the sound on the entire surface and all directions.
- An air-massage system, applicable to all Royal Stool seats and backrests, whose function is to reactivate blood flow, increasing comfort and players’ stay at the slot machine.
- Monitors and luminous serigraphy panels applicable to all Royal Stool’s backrests and seats that can duplicate a game’s images or broadcast films and marketing graphics.
- Armrests with wireless control buttons that interact with the slot machine.