Nevada Stays Ahead of the Game
Nevada casinos have always been leading edge when it comes to the integration of new amenities and technologies, as these recent news items show
According to the recently released State of the States 2018 report from the American Gaming Association, Nevada remains far and away the largest single state gaming market within the U.S., generating $11.6 billion in gross gaming revenue (GGR) during 2017, a 2.8 percent increase over 2016 numbers.
Indeed, Nevada alone contributed an amazing 29 percent of the $40.3 billion GGR generated by all U.S. commercial casino properties in 2017. The reason for Nevada’s impressive GGR total: it is home the three of the top 20 commercial casino markets in the U.S., including the number one overall market—the Las Vegas Strip—which reported $6.5 billion in 2017 GGR. The other two Nevada markets—Boulder Strip (12th largest) and Reno/Sparks (14th largest)—also performed well in 2017, producing total GGR of $813 million and $740 million respectively.
One of the many reasons why casino resorts within Nevada’s various gaming marketplaces post impressive returns year after year are the properties’ faith in re-invention… whether through the addition of non-gaming amenities, new customer-attracting technologies or a variety of other means. What follows are some recent market-specific examples of facilities that have either completed or are in the midst of transformation, in their own words.
Rowing in one direction
Three Reno casino resorts rebrand to create THE ROW, a multi-use destination for northern Nevada visitors
BY ELDORADO RESORTS
This past spring, THE ROW—a newly branded destination in the heart of Reno, uniting the Eldorado Resort Casino, Silver Legacy Resort Casino and Circus Circus Reno—debuted. Stretching across four city blocks, THE ROW encompasses 25 restaurants, 22 bars and lounges, 11 nightspots and over 4,000 luxury rooms and suites.
“THE ROW showcases what we do best—providing our guests with exceptional gaming, dining, entertainment experiences and the family-style service for which we’re renowned, all in one destination,” said Gregg Carano, general manager and senior vice president of Eldorado Resorts, the owner of all three properties. “We want to maintain the integrity and unique character of each of our resorts while creating one single, sophisticated identity.”
The rebrand is part of Eldorado Resorts’ $90 million investment in renovated rooms and suites, new restaurants and refurbished event spaces and common areas—showcasing northern Nevada’s most expansive and modern option for integrated hospitality.
Eldorado Resorts acquired Silver Legacy Resort Casino and Circus Circus Reno in 2015. With three interconnected properties and with the implementation of unified guest services, the overarching brand was imminent. Now, with 20 properties nationwide, the prestige and progressive brand of Eldorado Resorts is reflected within the burgeoning growth of Reno.
“It is our responsibility and deep-rooted commitment to the City of Reno to foster its growth,” said Carano. “THE ROW provides the convenience of consolidated amenities, with diverse options that cater to all our guests right in the heart of Reno.”
As members of the ONE Club—the casino player’s club—guests of THE ROW can earn points and redeem awards across all three resorts with one, single reward program. With universal reciprocity in gaming, dining and entertainment, guests can also enjoy the convenience of restaurant-to-room charges across all resorts.
As THE ROW enters phase II of its master renovation plan, guests can expect added amenities through 2019. New to THE ROW later this year is Ruth’s Chris Steak House, adding to last year’s culinary additions of Canter’s Delicatessen, Kanpai Sushi, El Jefe’s Cantina, Madame Butterwork’s Curious Cafe, The Habit Burger Grill, Piezzetta Pizza Kitchen and Panda Express. The iconic Eldorado showroom recently underwent renovations, and continues to host nationally-acclaimed performances, including its current show, “Cirque Paris.” The casino floor expanded its gaming options with the addition of the Poker Room at Silver Legacy. With new dining options, updated event spaces and renovated rooms and suites, THE ROW offers Reno’s newest luxury and modern hospitality to accommodate every traveler.
In addition to 227,000 square feet of gaming space, guests can enjoy daily, live circus acts at the award-winning Midway; intimate, champagne seating and interactive shows at the Eldorado showroom; globally-recognized comedy and musical artists in the Silver Legacy Grande Exposition Hall and Reno Events Center. THE ROW offers three distinct resorts with one amazing experience.
“At THE ROW, we strive to provide a home away from home for each and every guest,” Carano said. “From casino games and cuisine to hospitality and entertainment, our goal is always to exceed expectations of everyone who walks through our doors. While each guest may have a favorite resort to visit, we work hard to deliver a unified experience across all three resorts.”
Eldorado Resorts is a leading casino entertainment company that owns and operates 20 properties in 10 states, including Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. In aggregate, Eldorado’s properties feature approximately 21,000 slot machines and VLTs, 600 table games and over 7,000 hotel rooms.
For more information about THE ROW, visit www.therowreno.com.
LAS VEGAS STRIP
Palms Casino Resort Spa REACHes out
Palms ePlay Gamified Marketing Program recently made plans to reactivate dormant customers and promote $620 million remodel of property and brand
BY JOAN MANTINI
Internationally recognized for its accommodations, nightlife, pools and world-renowned restaurants, Palms Casino Resort Spa captures the excitement and energy of Las Vegas in one vibrant setting. Situated on nearly 30 acres, Palms Casino Resort Spa is a boutique property with three distinct towers—each offering unparalleled views of the iconic Las Vegas Strip.
The property has recently undergone a multimillion-dollar transformation that has left nothing untouched, according to press materials. Palms Casino Resort Spa has redesigned its rooms, added new culinary experiences, reimagined its gaming areas and created even more distinctive nightlife and daylife experiences. In the property transformation, Palms Casino Resort Spa has also implemented Engaged Nation’s award-winning REACH React digital engagement system, specifically designed to reactivate a select group of dormant Palms and Station Casinos customers.
REACH React provides casino operators such as Palms Casino Resort Spa with powerful, cutting-edge digital marketing tools that dynamically engage with customers both online and on-property around the clock, over a 12-week period. Private labeled as Palms ePlay, the customized program will also work in conjunction with the overall marketing strategy surrounding the property’s $620 million redesign termed “From Dust to Gold.”
“We know that digital marketing can play a significant role in driving more customer engagement and trips to our property,” said Lauren Westerfield, vice president of marketing at Palms. “We have closely observed the effective way that the Engaged Nation gamified REACH program reactivates players. . . so we chose it as the perfect add-on to our overall strategy to show the world the new Palms. We have so very much to offer guests at our newly remodeled property. Our goal is to reintroduce ourselves to players who have not visited the Palms in a considerable period of time. We know that REACH can help us accomplish that goal.”
Palms Casino Resort Spa selected a large group of dormant customers to offer exclusive VIP access to Palms ePlay. Once there, they interact with the property in new ways by participating in a variety of “edutaining” online games, events, activities and promotions. Using the latest research in behavior modification, incentive psychology and artificial and mechanical intelligence, the REACH React digital engagement system reportedly creates a continuous cycle of revenue-generating, online-to-on-property interaction through a customized portal hosted by Engaged Nation, driving increased customer visits, bottom line revenue and brand loyalty.
“It’s exciting to work with Lauren and her team at Palms Casino Resort Spa… they clearly know that innovative digital marketing is an essential tool in today’s hyper-competitive environment,” said Jerry Epstein, Engaged Nation CEO. “We know that our REACH gamified incentivization technology will help re-engage these VIP guests on a daily basis while promoting their brand rollout and all property amenities with the goal of driving greater awareness, interest, and—most importantly—property visits and revenue. We’re thrilled to be part of such an important moment in the life of Palms Casino Resort Spa.”
For more information about Palms Casino Resort Spa, visit www.palms.com.
DOWNTOWN LAS VEGAS
Golden Gate Hotel & Casino, 18 Fremont Project and the D Las Vegas to change the sportsbook game with VSiN partnership
BY THE D LAS VEGAS
Derek Stevens, CEO and developer of the D Las Vegas, plans to introduce three unique sports-entertainment offerings throughout his popular Downtown Las Vegas properties.
The new sportsbook at Golden Gate Hotel & Casino will serve as an operational prototype for a multi-level venue which will be housed at the highly anticipated property development located at 18 Fremont, as well as the hub for the sportsbook at the D Las Vegas. Each of these experiences will come to life in partnership with sports gambling media network Vegas Stats & Information Network (VSiN), including an in-house broadcast studio at the soon to be named 18 Fremont project.
“Nevada, and specifically Las Vegas, has always been the hub for sports wagering in the U.S. and with the recent Supreme Court ruling, we believe sports wagering will accelerate tremendously,” Stevens said. “Our entrance into the legal sports wagering market is timely and will be enhanced with our 10 percent investment into VSiN. We look forward to operating the D and the Golden Gate sportsbooks while creating the most dynamic sportsbook in Las Vegas history and the new VSiN Studios at our 18 Fremont project.”
Whether placed by amateurs or experts, the sportsbooks at Golden Gate, the D and the 18 Fremont location could appeal to all types of bettors and offer a competitive wagering menu. Additionally, a mobile app is currently in development, allowing for convenient wagering and opportunities for live betting at Golden Gate and the D.
The new sportsbook space at the Golden Gate is expected to debut in Q3 of 2019, and will serve as the archetype for the 18 Fremont project’s stadium-style sportsbook. The new property’s space is expected to feature the largest single screen television in the city alongside countless additional HD screens and personalized customer service kiosks.
Additionally, VSiN’s 18 Fremont broadcast studio will allow bettors to have in-depth analysis of all things sports betting from a roster of experts including broadcasters, professional bettors and athletes. From its state-of-the-art studio, VSiN will deliver insight into exclusive gambling news and statistics to aid bettors in their decisions. Fans and passersby will also be able to watch and interact as the daily broadcast airs live in the new studio.
“Since launching VSiN, one of the things I’m most proud of is the people we’ve been able to partner with to help grow this business,” said Brian Musburger, CEO of VSiN. “We’re thrilled to partner with another of this industry’s most successful luminaries, Derek Stevens, and honored to be involved in the 18 Fremont project. The VSiN team is looking forward to delivering the news and analysis sports bettors need to win – both here in Vegas and around the country.”
To help execute his vision, Stevens has hired longtime Las Vegas sports betting industry veteran Matthew Metcalf as sports director. Metcalf previously worked at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook, where he helped revive the city’s love for exceptional sports betting opportunities.
Stevens’ journey in Downtown Las Vegas began in 2012 with the introduction of the D Las Vegas; the introduction of a versatile event venue where he hosts viewing parties for professional sports games; and by giving Golden Gate—Vegas’ original casino—its first major expansion. He purchased land occupied by Las Vegas Club casino in 2015 to continue his vision of revitalizing the west side of Fremont Street Experience. The land for these properties is currently being used in the development of Downtown Las Vegas’ first resort-casino to be built from the ground up in decades.
For more information about the D Las Vegas, visit www.thed.com.
LAS VEGAS STRIP
Scaling the walls
The Wall Gaming Lounge takes competitive eSports to new heights at The Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino
BY RIO ALL-SUITES HOTEL & CASINO
In conjunction with the growing eSports phenomenon and inspired by competitive gamers from across the globe, The Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino has introduced the first phase of Las Vegas’ newest interactive space by Hybrid One, The Wall Gaming Lounge. Partnering with the leaders in PC gaming, Alienware, powered by NVIDIA GeForce GTX GPUs, The Wall is the first permanent eSports venue for Caesars Entertainment.
Designed as a multi-phased, 24,000-square-foot project, The Wall boasts ample gaming and lounge space highlighted by 30 high performance Alienware gaming PCs. A number of console gaming stations are also available. With graffiti artwork inspired by all of today’s hottest games, The Wall is not only a place to showcase one’s gaming prowess, but to enjoy the gamer’s vibe. The Wall features a self-serve beverage wall and mobile food/drink ordering.
“The Wall at The Rio is designed to be highly interactive and enables our guests to enter the space and feel immersed in a highly-visual and dynamic gaming atmosphere,” said Christian Stuart, executive vice president of gaming and interactive entertainment for Caesars Entertainment. “You can compete like an eSports professional or spectate in a social, ultramodern atmosphere,”
With a focus on cash tournaments and daily challenges, The Wall at The Rio provides guests with several original and exclusive experiences:
- Play on the best of the best—Step up and play a variety of the latest titles on one of the most elite pc gaming systems, Alienware Aurora R7 PCs powered by GeForce GTX 1080 GPUs.
- Gaming tournaments events—The Wall Gaming Lounge hosts real-money tournaments and eSports competitions with cash prizes including Local Lock In, MOBA night, FPS night, Battle Royal night, FGC night, Twitch Partner and Affiliate Night, Monday Chicken Party, Thursday Throw down and more.
- Ongoing challenges—Hourly and daily challenges for custom, collectible patches and merchandise prizes in the latest and most popular games.
- Mobile food ordering—Players can easily order food and drink from a variety of menu options right from mobile devices.
- Energy on tap—Before, during and after gaming, players can quench their thirst from the pour-your-own tap wall of more than 10 different beverages. Beverages available include: espresso, coffee, sports drinks, energy drinks, hibiscus tea and even kombucha.
With expected completion in fall 2018, the next phase will feature additional chef-driven food and beverage offerings from The Wall, as well as a competitive gaming experience that redefines playing with friends.
For more information on Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino, visit www.riolasvegas.com.
THE LAS VEGAS STRIP
Honing the IT edge
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas leads the hospitality technology sector with cutting-edge updates for 2018
BY COSMOPOLITAN OF LAS VEGAS
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas has unveiled pivotal technology advancements to transform its website, Identity Membership & Rewards program and its mischief-making chatbot, Rose. As a part of this development, Rose will become the first ever artificial intelligence-based SMS chatbot to serve casino loyalty customers in the hospitality space.
“The objective behind The Cosmopolitan’s technology advancements is to make accessibility easier for our guests in addition to delivering a more personalized experience,” said Tom Evans, chief marketing officer for The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. “In our continued effort to keep the resort at the forefront of technology in the gaming and hospitality industry, whether through the instinctive, personalized settings for guests on our website, or the convenience of texting our chatbot Rose to deliver Identity members their status and available offers, technology has given us the ability to serve our guests at an even higher level than before.”
Developed by The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas and its digital agency, R/GA Chicago, Rose was first introduced in January 2017. Rose’s playful personality broke new ground for chatbots in the hospitality industry. Her savvy, quick-witted and inspiring messages reflect the distinct allure of the resort. In alignment with The Cosmopolitan’s spirited brand and market-leading creative, Rose goes beyond robotic commentary and instead uses her Cosmopolitan personality to engage and entertain guests. Using real-time text messaging conversations, Rose guides guests through art tours, arranges for amenity delivery (towels, pillows and hangers) to guest rooms, suggests the perfect restaurants, recommends one-of-a-kind, off-menu cocktails and even plays games. Upon launch, Rose was able to answer 80 percent of guest’s questions automatically. Guests who used Rose were 33 percent more satisfied with their stay based on guest feedback and spent an average of 30 percent more while on property.
And while Rose has always been smart, she now has even more ways to impress and service guests, with earlier this year, integrating into an artificial intelligence and natural language processing-based platform in conjunction with Reply.ai. She can answer guest questions even faster and understand context. Additionally, Rose can read sentiment and detect if a guest has an issue or concern about a room or service and immediately call upon a guest service agent or more internal teams for quick and seamless resolution.
Much of Rose’s success lies in her ability to network. In her latest iteration, she connected to The Cosmopolitan’s casino loyalty platform and employees. Due to her streamlined connection to customer data, once a customer proves his/her identity through Rose, she can then automatically tell the customer their points, tier level, how many points are needed to reach the next tier, current offers and more. When Rose is stumped, she transfers to casino service agents whose dashboard shows them the name of the customer and status as well. The agent can then text message back answers to customer questions. It is because of these connections that Rose has become the first chatbot to serve casino and loyalty customers.
“For our customers, it means having a close, personal VIP host at The Cosmopolitan,” Evans said. “And to us, it means providing a distinctly personalized, boutique level of service, at scale.” Currently four teams are connected to support Rose: guest services, concierge, casino services and resort services.
NEW WEBSITE, MEMBERSHIP & REWARDS INTEGRATION
With 26 restaurants, 13 retail shops, a sprawling casino floor, three distinct pools, an array of entertainment experiences and more than two million Identity loyalty members, The Cosmopolitan is astonishingly connected. That is why the team sought to develop an online “system,” as opposed to a website which typically serves as a basic marketing page or booking engine. With these updates, the site has moved beyond a marketing platform and much like the brand and resort itself, encourages guests to explore more through intrigue with greater ease showcasing contemporary art, bold imagery and engaging campaign creative.
This new online system features:
- Art from the new “Behind Closed Doors” campaign, featuring crisp, intriguing images;
- Unique photo features with interesting crops and halo treatments, which encourage curious travelers to explore further without displaying the full picture;
- A network of cloud-based APIs to feed art, copy and photography (content) and another that serves customer information;
- A pattern lab and design system that dictates consistent designs and styles so customers are not required to relearn the look and feel with each new page.; and
- Virtual hosts available via online chat to offer guests more information about their casino play, points earnings and promotional offers as well as upcoming stays and events at The Cosmopolitan.
Whereas many companies choose to create separate “rewards” websites for customers, The Cosmopolitan chose to integrate rewards into the entire experience, making it easier for customers to know how to use their point earnings, tier status and benefits when considering their next or current trip. “Our hope is that the way guests experience our digital platforms, inspires them to take advantage of all the benefits available through the ultimate insider’s club: Identity membership,” Evans said.
For more information on The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, visit www.cosmopolitanlasvegas.com.
LAS VEGAS STRIP
What’s in a name?
Monte Carlo takes major strides toward its transformation into Park MGM
BY MGM RESORTS INTERNATIONAL
With the May lighting of its new marquee and hotel tower signs, Monte Carlo officially shed its name for a new identity—Park MGM—making way for the resort set for completion later this year. Following a transformation that will touch every element of the central Strip property, Park MGM is a welcoming social hub that evokes the residential spirit, intimacy and individuality of a boutique experience on a resort scale.
A partnership between Sydell Group and MGM Resorts International, Park MGM was born from the collaborative vision of the New York-based lifestyle hotelier and one of the world’s preeminent destination resort developers. When complete, the project will comprise two new distinct experiences: Park MGM, and a Las Vegas version of the renowned NoMad, a standalone 292-room hotel encompassing the tower’s top four floors.
“It’s a very special moment seeing this ambitious idea begin to come to life,” said Andrew Zobler, founder and CEO of Sydell Group. “Together with MGM, we were able to rethink every element of the guest experience and create something personal on a grand scale.”
“The opening of Park MGM, and soon NoMad, will tie together the entire neighborhood we’ve created with The Park, T-Mobile Arena and CityCenter,” added Jim Murren, chairman and CEO of MGM Resorts. “We are grateful to Andrew and the team at Sydell Group for sharing our vision to deliver a destination that embraces its surroundings and speaks to a new generation of travelers.”
Beginning with the opening of the 5,200-seat Park Theater in December 2016, the resort has unveiled several new amenities including completely reimagined guestrooms and suites, food and beverage offerings, lounges, pools, meeting spaces and more. The evolution of the Park MGM experience will continue throughout 2018 with the addition of nightlife; a new dining concept from Roy Choi embracing the energy of Los Angeles’ Koreatown; an Eataly marketplace designed specifically for Las Vegas; and the launch of Lady Gaga’s highly anticipated special engagement, among other elements.
NoMad Las Vegas will open within Park MGM in fall 2018 with 292 guestrooms and suites; a dedicated entrance and lobby; high-limit gaming; a private pool environment; and the Las Vegas debut of Chef Daniel Humm and restaurateur Will Guidara, the visionaries behind the restaurant, Eleven Madison Park.
Guests seeking a taste of Park MGM now can experience these resort features:
- Immersive lobby—Filled with natural light and punctuated by nature-inspired décor and art, Park MGM’s lobby is a nod to urban gardens and parks, including the adjacent Park neighborhood, bringing the outdoors inside. A dramatic arboreal sculpture by Brazilian woodworker Henrique Oliveira is the focal point of the lobby. The remarkable tree sculpture extends from above with its roots stretching across the ceiling. Throughout the lobby, guests are invited to explore intriguing works by the likes of David Hockney, Shahram Karimi and Shoja Azari and many others.
- Residential guestrooms—Park MGM’s rooms evoke the essence of a private apartment with a mix of thoughtful touches, antique-inspired pieces, “found” objects and original artwork by artists and photographers from around the world commissioned for each room by France’s be-pôles studio.
- Moneyline Sports Book & Bar—Moneyline brings a new twist to the Las Vegas sports book with intertwining spaces that playfully transport guests to their favorite neighborhood hangout. Among the duckpin bowling lanes and billiards games, Moneyline features a menu conceptualized by Hogsalt Hospitality with griddled cheeseburgers as well as self-service, weigh-and-pay food selections for guests wanting to personalize their game-day feast.
- Pools—Channeling the sundrenched South of France, this vibrant outdoor escape features three pools, an oversized heated spa, 12 cabanas, lounge areas and multiple bars serving up delicious bites and beverages. Guests can mingle among friends at one of three pools—the South Pool, the East Pool or the North Pool—while lively music evokes a cool, laid-back vibe. Each pool boasts Baja shelf seating and submerged wet decks; a VIP area by the East Pool also features deluxe cushioned chaises.
- Meetings and conventions—Phase one of Park MGM’s 77,000-square-foot conference center combines non-traditional spaces and flexible design to fill an unmet need for small groups visiting Las Vegas. With bookings now available, meeting planners can take advantage of the city’s first Executive Meeting Center and a comprehensive installation of Stay Well rooms and meeting space.
- Casino floor—Park MGM’s remodeled casino floor reflects the resort’s outdoor inspiration. In keeping with Sydell Group’s vision for maintaining key elements of the former space, the casino’s design contains subtle nods to its Monte Carlo roots, including the refined sparkling chandeliers, intricate crown molding and stained-glass ceiling, all of which have been refurbished to their original beauty.
- Park Theater—Park Theater invites guests to an intimate space for one-of-a-kind productions from renowned artists. The theater is home to extended engagements with Bruno Mars, Cher, Ricky Martin—and soon—Lady Gaga.
With its unrivaled central location, Park MGM offers guests direct access to what is quickly becoming the city’s premier entertainment district, featuring T-Mobile Arena, The Park and Park Theater.
For more information on Park MGM, visit www.parkmgm.com.