January Was a Great Month for Maryland’s Popular Casinos

MGM National Harbor Green Arrow Increase

The first month of 2022 has just come to an end and states are already beginning to release their gambling revenue reports. That includes Maryland, home to some of the most popular casinos on the East Coast. New reports surfaced this week showing that Maryland’s popular casinos saw impressive revenue gains over the month.

Lawmakers in Maryland have succeeded in expanding the state’s gambling industry over the last few years. Now is a great time to look at how the casinos here fared in January.

Let’s get into it!

Maryland’s Popular Casinos Thrived Last January

Maryland is still not thought of as one of the country’s major gambling destinations. It could eventually develop that reputation, however, as a huge number of great gaming options are now available here. That includes both casinos and sportsbooks.

Some of the country’s biggest casino companies own gambling venues in this state. Throughout 2021, these properties succeeded, helping to bring Maryland a huge amount of tax revenue. The first month of 2022 has just wrapped up and new reports have already surfaced showing how much the casinos here managed to earn.

Total casino revenue in the state came out to $154.8 million over the month. Some of Maryland’s popular casinos fared better than others. That includes MGM National Harbor, which saw the most revenue earned during the month at $67.1 million in GGR, representing a 32.8% increase when compared to January of 2021.

Live! Casino & Hotel also posted impressive revenue figures in January. This casino brought in $54.6 million last month, up more than 17% from one year ago. The other casinos in this state experienced mixed results.

Maryland’s regulated sports betting industry formally went live late last year. Unfortunately, residents here will need to wait a little longer to bet on their favorite sports online.

A Launch Date for Mobile Sportsbooks in Maryland Remains Unknown

Maryland is home to just over six million people. A massive percentage of these residents consider themselves hardcore sports fans. State lawmakers recognized this fact and finally gave the green light for retail sportsbooks to launch in the state late last year.

Many residents have been disappointed to see that online sportsbooks have yet to go live in the state. The state’s gaming commission continues working on a set of rules to monitor these mobile platforms. Those hoping to see online sportsbooks launch prior to Super Bowl LVI on February 13 are out of luck.

Five land-based sportsbooks are now up and running in Maryland. It may be months before any mobile sportsbooks launch here. Maryland’s ​​Sports Wagering Application Review Commission is still in the process of setting specific regulations for this industry. Many are hopeful that these online sports betting platforms launch before the start of the 2022 MLB season.

Those in Maryland looking to bet on Super Bowl LVI will need to do so through one of the retail sportsbooks currently up and running. These can be found inside many of Maryland’s popular casinos and several more are set to begin operating over the next couple of months.

Maryland is far from the only state in the northeastern United States to recently expand its gambling industry. Below is a quick look at some of the other states that have recently begun allowing new forms of gambling.

Northeastern State Prepare for a Surge of Sports Betting Revenue

Only a few days remain until the 2022 Super Bowl takes place. Analysts are predicting that millions of Americans will choose to bet on the outcome of this exciting matchup. That is great news for the states with legal, regulated sports betting options available.

New Jersey has been home to the largest sports betting market in the country for years. Many retail and online sportsbooks are already seeing a huge number of wagers on Super Bowl LVI flowing in. This state’s sports betting industry is beginning to face an increase in competition, though.

That is coming primarily from New York. State leaders in this state gave final approval for online sportsbooks to launch in early January. In just their first few weeks of operating, the mobile sportsbooks here took in more than $1 billion total bets.

Sportsbooks inside Maryland’s popular casinos will experience a wave of bets on the NFL championship game this weekend. The betting platforms in Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, and Delaware will, as well.

Maryland’s gambling industry continues to thrive. How do you think these casinos will fare throughout the rest of 2022? Let us know in the comments section below!

Maryland’s Sports Betting Industry is Growing, Fast

Hollywood Casino Sportsbook Background Betting

Maryland is one of the many states to legalize and regulate sports betting in 2021. It seems that officials in the state are working hard to expand this form of gambling. New reports reveal that Maryland’s sports betting industry is already growing very quickly.

Many sportsbooks are already up and running here. More are set to launch in the coming months.

Here’s what you need to know!

Maryland’s Sports Betting Industry Continues to Expand

Sports betting has been growing more popular throughout the United States since the US Supreme Court decided to remove PASPA in 2018. A huge number of states have legal sportsbooks up and running. Lawmakers in Maryland decided to legalize sports betting in November of 2020 and the first sportsbooks have recently begun to go live here.

Many are now taking note of how quickly Maryland’s sports betting industry is growing. Many new sportsbooks have recently begun to operate. More casinos are just starting to receive permission to launch sportsbooks, too.

The Hollywood Casino in Perryville is the latest gambling venue in the state to launch sports betting. This casino sits just a few miles from the border with Delaware. It launched its first sportsbook after a two-day trial run overseen by officials within the Maryland Lottery.

Many are astounded to see how quickly Maryland’s sports betting industry is growing. This is now the fifth sportsbook to launch in the state. Sports betting revenue is expected to surpass $100 million annually. The sportsbooks here are taxed at 15%.

It’s an exciting time for sports fans in Maryland. 2022 is expected to be a big year for this state’s sports betting industry. Many other states are expected to launch their sportsbooks in the next few months.

More States Prepare to Launch Sportsbooks in 2022

Sports betting has never been more popular than it is right now. States around the country are earning a huge amount of tax revenue every month from their regulated sportsbooks. It now appears that several states are preparing to launch their first sportsbooks next year.

It now seems almost guaranteed that California will choose to legalize sports gambling next year. State officials have been negotiating with tribal groups in the state to launch sportsbooks. Expect to see a vote to legalize sports betting appearing on the ballots next November.

Some of the most anti-gambling states in the country are now showing interest in legalizing sports betting. That includes Texas and Georgia. Both states are against casino gambling, yet are beginning to take notice of the benefits of legal sportsbooks.

2022 is shaping up to be a massive year for the sports betting industry. Many states with sportsbooks already up and running are looking to expand their betting industries. That includes New York, which appears set to launch its first online sportsbooks in the next few months.

The US casino industry is expanding rapidly right now, too. Let’s take a quick look at some of the new casinos opening their doors next year.

New Casinos are Set to Open Their Doors Next Year

Sports betting is not the only form of gambling to gain major popularity over the past few years. Casino gambling exploded in popularity over 2021. Many states set new monthly casino revenue records this year and analysts expect this trend to continue in 2022.

Several exciting new casinos are expected to open their doors next year. That includes several in Las Vegas. Station Casinos has been working hard to expand in Las Vegas lately and hope is that it is able to open some of its properties currently under construction here before the end of next year.

Illinois approved a Capital Plan in 2019 allowing for six new casinos to open in the state, including one in Chicago. None have yet opened their doors. Many are hopeful to see at least one begin operating in 2022.

Several more states are looking to open new casinos next year. That includes Pennsylvania and New York. If all goes according to plan, 2022 will be the best year in history for the land-based casino industry.

Are you excited to see Maryland’s sports betting industry grow? Will sports betting bring in major revenue earnings here? Let us know in the comments section below.

Casino Revenue in Massachusetts Decreased This November

Casinos at Massachusetts - Massachusetts Map Silhouette

Massachusetts is home to three popular casinos. These properties have seen fluctuating revenue figures throughout 2021. Reports surfaced this week claiming that casino revenue in Massachusetts decreased over the month of November.

This should not come as a massive shock. Casino revenue tends to drop around the winter months. Today, we’ll talk about how much money the gambling properties here managed to bring in over the month.

Let’s get into it!

Here’s a Look at Casino Revenue in Massachusetts Over November

For many years, Massachusetts banned almost all forms of traditional gambling. This changed about a decade ago when lawmakers approved a measure to allow commercial casinos in the state. Three casinos are now operating in the state, including the Encore Boston Harbor in the Boston area.

New reports on casino revenue in Massachusetts over November are beginning to surface. It has been confirmed that these casinos experienced a slight revenue drop. That seemed almost inevitable when considering the record-breaking month these properties had in October.

The state’s total casino handle came out to $703,285,617 over the month. This represents a 6.2% decrease when compared to the handle in October. The casinos here also brought in $87,810,200 over November, down from the $92 million in GGR experienced in October.

It’s hard to say this is any kind of failure for Massachusetts’ casino industry. $87 million is still an impressive revenue figure over a single month. That is especially true when considering just how low revenue earnings were from these casinos one year ago.

The entire gambling in Massachusetts has been changing over the past decade. Let’s take a look at some of the new gaming that are expected to become available here soon.

Massachusetts Lawmakers Continue Pushing for the Legalization of Sports Betting

A huge number of states chose to formally legalize sports betting in 2022. That includes several states in the Northeastern region of the country. Massachusetts is now one of the only states in this area without regulated sportsbooks up and running.

Many lawmakers are growing annoyed by this fact. States across the US are earning a massive amount of money from their regulated sportsbooks every single month. Officials in Massachusetts are tired of missing out on these impressive revenue figures.

Fortunately, 2022 appears to be the year that sports betting becomes available in this state. The Senate and House nearly approved bills to launch this industry in 2021. The issue now has bipartisan support and it seems likely that the first sportsbooks will go live in Massachusetts before the end of next year.

There is reason to believe that this state’s sports gambling industry will be hugely successful. Massachusetts is known for having some of the most passionate sports fans in the country. It’s here that major professional teams such as the Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots are based.

Casino revenue in Massachusetts is likely to remain high. The addition of sports betting will bring in valuable tax revenue for the state each month. Stay tuned for updates on the launch of sports betting here as the months go on.

More States Report Gambling Revenue Surges Over November

The entire US gambling industry has been growing throughout 2021. That includes the casino and sports betting industry. Some of the largest gaming hubs in the United States have recently launched new casinos and sportsbooks and revenue figures continue to increase.

Many states reported impressive gaming revenue growth in November. That includes Iowa and Indiana. Both states have sports gambling options available and both experienced huge revenue surges from these regulated betting platforms.

Illinois is quickly turning into one of the country’s top gambling destinations. This past November, casino revenue took a slight 4.7% decrease when compared to October. Fortunately, gambling revenue here remains far above what it experienced throughout 2020.

Most analysts expect to see huge gambling revenue surges in 2022. Places like Las Vegas and Atlantic City are preparing for fresh waves of tourism. Atlantic City casinos may even experience a major tax break that helps them save revenue leading into next year.

Are you surprised to see that casino revenue in Massachusetts dipped in November? Do you expect to see sports betting legalized here in 2022? Let us know in the comments section below.

Colorado’s Sports Betting Industry is Already Surging

On May 1st, 2020, Colorado became the 18th state to launch its regulated sports betting industry. It’s becoming clear that this was a great move by “The Centennial State.” According to new reports, Colorado’s sports betting industry continues to bring in huge amounts of revenue.Colorado Flag Picture

Sports betting is growing more popular around the country every month. More states are now beginning to take a look at legalizing and regulating this industry. Today, we’re going to check out exactly how much money the sports betting platforms in Colorado managed to bring in last month.

Online Sports Betting is More Popular Than Ever Before

Since March, the entire US gambling industry has been shifting online. Land-based casinos around the county had shut down and more gambling fans began to realize how easy and fun it was to make their wagers online. In many parts of the country, online sports betting is now regulated and taxed.

It’s clear that online gambling is here to stay. Revenue from the industry has been increasing steadily for months. The American Gaming Association recently released a report showing exactly how much money the regulated internet casino and poker industry is generating right now.

According to this report, these casino and poker platforms have already generated $402 million in 2020. That represents a 300% increase when compared to 2019. Incredibly, only a few states currently regulate their online casino industries.

Almost every state has seen its online sports betting revenue increase in 2020. That doesn’t necessarily mean everything is going well, though. Land-based revenue across the country is down considerably. Things are beginning to improve in cities like Las Vegas, yet revenue remains significantly lower than it was last year.

It’s an interesting dilemma for gambling companies around the United States. Many are now focusing more on improving their online gaming operations. State leaders are also beginning to take a closer look at the regulation of this industry.

New reports are now showing how much the sports betting industry over in Colorado is generating.

Here’s an Update on Colorado’s Sports Betting Industry

Lawmakers in Colorado have been interested in legalizing sports betting since PASPA was struck down back in mid-2018. In late 2019, a sports betting bill was finally approved by the House and Senate. Voters approved the bills a short time later. On May 1st, the first state-regulated sports betting platform went live here.

Since that time, this industry has grown immensely. Colorado’s sports betting industry has generated more revenue with each passing month. That’s true once again in July, according to the Colorado Division of Gaming.

The state’s sports platforms generated an incredible $59,183,619.73 in July. That’s a staggering 55% increase from June. As some analysts are pointing out, that includes revenue from the newly-opened brick-and-mortar sportsbooks.

Dustin Gouker, a gaming analyst based in Colorado, gave an optimistic take on the state’s sports gambling market.

“It only took a few days of basketball and baseball games in July to show the demand that is out there in Colorado for sports betting,” Gouker said.  “In just three months, Colorado has established itself as the fifth-largest sports betting market in the U.S, and the number of sportsbook operators in the state is growing rapidly. And with a robust August schedule that includes playoff runs by the Denver Nuggets and Colorado Avalanche, the short-term outlook for the state is excellent.”

There are now eight land-based sportsbooks based in Colorado. 10 different online sportsbooks are operating here, as well. To the surprise of many, baseball, soccer, and table tennis were the most popular sports wagered on in July.

Casinos in Colorado Struggle to Get Back on Track

Colorado is home to a huge number of fantastic casinos. The state legalized Class III casino gambling back in 1991 and now draws in large numbers of gambling fans from nearby states. The vast majority of gaming venues here are located in just three cities.

In March, all the casinos here were forced to close down. It was devastating for the cities that rely on these properties for tourism and employment. By early June, state leaders gave the green light for the casinos to open their doors again.

These properties are now struggling to attract players. Most are now fully operational again, albeit with major safety regulations set in place.

Lawmakers here recently introduced a measure to increase bet limits inside casinos. To qualify for the ballot, 124,632 signatures must be confirmed. The goal is to give more power to the residents who rely on these casinos.

Fortunately, Colorado’s sports betting industry is helping to make up for the lost casino revenue. Revenue from this industry increased dramatically in July. We’ll now need to wait and see how things look in August.

Are you surprised to see how popular sports betting is in Colorado? Let us know in the comments section below!

Detroit’s Casino Reopening Plans Include Smoking, Poker, and Buffet Bans

MGM Grand DetroitWhen Detroit’s three casinos finally reopen, it’s going to come alongside some big changes.

On Monday, the Michigan Gaming Control Board approved reopening guidelines that will require visitors to wear face masks, undergo a temperature check upon entering, and not smoke, play poker, or eat at the buffet.

Detroit casinos, per the guidelines, will also be limited to 15 percent maximum capacity initially.

Currently, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has yet to lift the coronavirus shutdown order that was put into place nearly three months ago, on March 16.

While casinos don’t have a definitive start date just yet, tribal casinos in the state have already reopened to the public.

Casinos in Las Vegas finally reopened last Thursday, but with Michigan’s heightened number of coronavirus cases and deaths as compared to Nevada and other states that have reopened, they’re taking the right precautions to make sure the state is in good condition to reopen casinos safely.

According to gaming board Executive Director Richard Kalm, CDC recommendations, Nevada Gaming Board guidelines, and data from the National Indian Gaming Commission was carefully considered in crafting the reopening guidelines.

Reopening Guidelines for MGM Grand, MotorCity and Greektown Casinos

The COVID-19 safety guidelines for commercial casinos in Detroit’s three casinos, MGM Grand, MotorCity, and Greektown, were developed in considering the initial reopening. It’s unsure yet how long these particular measures will be in effect, but let’s take a look into the specific protocols below.

Guest and Employee Casino Entry

Entry points into all three casinos will be reduced, with signage visibly seen upon entering reminding guests of the CDC’s guidelines for social distancing, proper handwashing, how to wear facial masks and to stay home if feeling sick.

A non-contact thermometer or thermal scanner device will record the internal temperature of every entrant, making sure that they are not above the temperature danger zone of 100.4 degrees. Anyone who exceeds the appropriate temperature will be denied access and directed otherwise.

Guests must be wearing a face mask that covers their nose and mouth in order to gain access into the casino. For patrons who need to be identified by security or other staff members, they may be asked to lower their masks to confirm identity.

Casino personnel stationed at entry points will receive additional training in how to properly identify guests who may be exhibiting signs or symptoms of COVID-19, and incident protocols.

Occupancy will be monitored and enforced to ensure that the maximum limit of 15 percent isn’t gone over.

COVID-19 Preparedness Plan

Each of Detroit’s three casinos must be in compliance with local, state, and federal COVID-19 health requirements. Recommendations are also to be strongly considered and implemented.

Employees are to receive thorough COVID-19 training, discussing symptom identification, incident protocols, and proper use and disposal of personal protective equipment.

All employees will also be required to undergo a temperature check at the start of every shift to ensure their internal temperature is below 100.4 degrees.

Signage with CDC reminders will be placed throughout back-of-house areas to remind staff on how to conduct themselves to avoid the spread of COVID-19.

Cleaning and Disinfecting

All publically-available items throughout the casinos which are regularly touched and used will be sanitized frequently. Those items include ATM machines, counters, door handles, elevator panels and buttons, restrooms, chairs, light switches, phones, kiosks, clocks, etc.

As often as available, disinfectant wipes will be placed throughout the casino to allow guests to disinfect surfaces after using them.

Enhanced cleaning protocols will be implemented throughout the front-of-house and back-of-house areas.

Slot Machines

All casinos are to schedule frequent cleanings of slot machines. To the extent available, disinfectant wipes should be made available near slot machines so players can use them to wipe down machines before use.

Casinos are to support the CDC’s social distancing guidelines by either installing plexiglass barriers between machines, removing every other chair from certain machines, or disabling certain slot machines altogether.

Table Games

In the casinos’ initial reopening, poker rooms will not be available.

All table games will be limited to three players each, with midi-baccarat games being limited to four players each, and craps games limited to six players each.

All dealers are to wear face masks or face shields when dealing with players.

Playing cards are to be replaced at the start of every shift, with casinos developing their own plans for having chips cleaned and sanitized daily.

For every new shooter, dice must be disinfected.

Those who are not playing at the table are not to congregate table games or stand behind players.

Queuing Areas

Queuing areas throughout the casino floors but be marked with floor markers to identify proper social distancing placement when in lines or other areas.

Elevator areas are to include signage requirement that no more than four people are to use an elevator at once.

Food and Beverage Service

Casino employees are to wear face masks throughout their shift and be conscious of practicing social distancing with every guest interaction, as feasibly possible, such as in the dispensation of food and drinks.

Prohibited Activities

The following activities are prohibited in the initial reopening of the casinos: Poker rooms, smoking on the casino floor, concerts, nightclubs, and all other forms of live entertainment, valet services, coat check, buffets, self-serve soda and coffee stations.

Sportsbook

Sportsbooks are to be rearranged to support social distancing among bettors. Floor marking at to be utilized in designated line areas, high-touch surfaces like tables, seats, and kiosks, must be frequently cleaned and sanitized, and ticket writers are to either wear face masks/shields and gloves or have a plexiglass barrier installed between them and sports bettors

Current COVID-19 Trends in Michigan

As of Monday, the state has reported 64,701 known cases of COVID-19 and 5,912 related deaths.

The new daily cases of COVID-19 continue to fall throughout the state, averaging 193 new daily cases currently, compared with the average of 283 daily cases over the previous five-day period.

Daily death trend is also falling, with an average of 21 deaths over the last five days, as compared with 33 days over the previous five-day stretch.

Stay Tuned

With Detroit casinos gearing up to reopen in the near future, it’s good to see that they’ve publically released their reopening safety protocols to instill some confidence in guests anxious to return.

What do you think of the restrictions? Will you be going to visit one of Detroit’s three casinos once they reopen?

Let us know in the comments below!

Marriot Providing $10M Worth in Hotel Stays for Healthcare Workers

Marriott International Logo RedIn a positive trend that we’ve been seeing over the past couple weeks, Marriot International is joining other hotel properties like Diamond Resorts and Greektown in Detroit, Michigan in providing free stays for healthcare professionals fighting the coronavirus pandemic.

In their new initiative called “Rooms for Responders,” Marriot International will be offering complimentary rooms in cities across the US where the COVID-19 outbreak has been the most disruptive.

Those cities include New York City, the country’s coronavirus epicenter, Newark, N.J., Washington, D.C., New Orleans, Detroit, Chicago, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles.

Partnering with the American College of Emergency Physicians & Emergency Nurses Association

The hotel property has joined forces with the American College of Emergency Physicians and the Emergency Nurses Association to set up healthcare professionals with comped stays at the participating Marriot properties.

According to Mariott International President and CEO Arne Sorenson, American Express and JPMorgan Chase, the hotel’s credit card partners, will be joining in on their humanitarian effort.

Doctors and nurses, who have the biggest risk of catching COVID-19 since they’re in close, constant daily contact with patients, will be able to have a comfortable, clean, and safe space to rest their head after a long shift.

Complimentary hotel stays help in the fight against COVID-19 because it alleviates the worry that many healthcare workers or first responders have about getting their families or loved ones at home infected with the virus.

Community Caregiver Program

Outside of the free stays offered in the select cities where COVID-19 has made the biggest impact, Marriot International has also initiated their new Community Caregiver Program.

This program offers discounted rates to first responders and healthcare workers at over 2,500 of their properties. The initiative is beneficial for workers who are looking to book stays at locations that are closer to the hospitals they’re working at.

The initiative is available in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean, and Latin America.

Properties Across US Offering Over 3 Million Hotel Rooms to Healthcare Workers

Hotel chains and independent properties have really stepped up to the plate during the coronavirus pandemic. They’re helping in the best way that they’re able to, providing a free stay to those who need it the most during the outbreak.

In a new nationwide initiative called “Hospitality for Hope,” over 15,000 hotels have signed up to match healthcare and emergency frontline workers with complimentary stays at participating properties.

Through this and several over initiatives that the hospitality industry have recently joined, a combined total of 3.4 million hotel rooms have been made available to our country’s healthcare workers in this desperate time of need.

According to Chip Rogers, President and CEO of the American Hotel and Lodging Association (AHLA), the company that organized Hospitality for Hope, the hospitality industry is “uniquely positioned” to support communities by taking care of frontline workers during this public health crisis.

Rogers explained that as an industry of people that’s used to taking care of people, now’s the time to really be there for our healthcare heroes and emergency workers who are putting their lives on the line every day just to keep the citizens of this country safe.

Stay Tuned

We are grateful for the hospitality industry for providing a safe haven for our country’s healthcare professional and first responders. During a time where their own industries have been rocked with economic loss, they’re still doing their part to give back in a major way.

Because these workers have a comfortable, free room to rest in and a space to keep themselves at a safe distance from their loved ones, we imagine it’s helping lift some of the stress out of their daily routines during this new normal.

While we can imagine how tough it is for these workers to be away from their families during this time, we imagine it helps remove the burden of worrying about whether or not their families will get sick.

Do you know someone who is a healthcare professional or frontline worker? Leave a shout-out to them in the comments below and give them our many thanks! We are humbled by your continued sacrifice.

Stay safe and healthy out there, everyone.

Colorado’s Sports Betting Industry is Coming Together

For almost two years, every state in the country has been able to set its own laws on sports gambling. Unsurprisingly, a huge number of states have now legalized this industry and are profiting massively as a result. Colorado’s sports betting industry is just emerging and is expected to be one of the country’s biggest.Colorado Flag Picture

Colorado is home to several major sports teams and a huge number of passionate sports fans. Many major sports betting companies are now attempting to break into this industry. Today, we’re going to look at this state’s path to sports betting legalization, and discuss how it may expand over the next few years.

Let’s get into it!

Sports Betting is Officially Made Legal in Colorado

For decades, only Nevada was legally able to offer sports betting odds in the United States. All other states were prevented from legalizing sports betting due to the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, or PASPA. This bill limited the country’s sports betting operations to Nevada.

For years, lawmakers around the country have been pushing to get PASPA removed. New Jersey, in particular, has been very critical of the controversial bill. Finally, things took a major turn.

In May of 2018, the US Supreme Court decided to officially strike PASPA down. This immediately gave every state in the country the ability to set their own laws on sports betting. Several states, including New Jersey and Delaware immediately legalized this form of wagering.

Certain lawmakers in Colorado have pushed to make sports betting legal since PASPA was removed. In November of 2019, voters in the state finally passed a ballot that allows both land-based and online sports betting. The first sportsbooks are expected to begin operating here in May of 2020.

Colorado’s sports betting industry is already beginning to grow. Several casinos are gearing up to launch their sports betting options.

Colorado’s Sports Betting Industry is Coming Together

Many states have chosen to officially legalize sports betting. Several of these states have passed sports gambling bills, yet are still coming up with regulations. This is the case with Colorado. Sports betting is now legal here, yet no sportsbooks have officially begun operating in the state.

That doesn’t mean casinos aren’t getting prepared, though. Some of the state’s biggest and most profitable gambling venues have officially begun gearing up to launch their sports betting platforms. Many casinos in the state are preparing their land-based and online sportsbooks.

Sean Demeule, vice president and general manager of Ameristar Casino in Black Hawk, commented on the casino’s sports betting preparations to the media this week.

“(We’re) thrilled that the voters passed sports betting last November. We’re starting to plan how we’re going to roll it out here at Ameristar. We’re going to start with a sportsbook here on property, working on the design right now,” he said. “We’re taking what’s been done in Vegas and improving on that.” 

Colorado is likely to begin earning millions of dollars a month from these legal sports betting options. The revenue will help to fund various state water projects. We’ll need to wait and see which sports betting companies begin entering into this state over the next few years!

Several Companies Already Set to Offer Sports Betting Options in Colorado

The US sports betting industry is growing at an unprecedented rate. Bank of America recently claimed that this industry will be worth $22 billion by 2020. As more states legalize this form of gambling, more money begins flowing in.

It’s no surprise to see so many companies push to break into Colorado’s sports betting industry. Not long ago, Twin River purchased three popular Colorado casinos. The company also received three sports betting licenses here, all of which will go live in less than 90 days.

DraftKings and FanDuel are also working hard to enter Colorado. These companies are currently active in many states including New Jersey.

Several major UK companies such as William Hill are interested in Colorado, as well. Based on the way things are going, this could become one of the most lucrative sports betting states in the country.

Colorado’s sports betting industry is already growing. Stay tuned for more updates over the next few months!

Trump Still Owes Atlantic City Money for Trump Taj Mahal Casino

Taj Mahal Casino in Atlantic CityThese days, there’s a lot of talk about Trump’s divisiveness and strategy within the White House. But there’s barely any mention of his unpaid bills as an Atlantic City casino magnate.

Trump obviously faces far more pressing issues now, including his impeachment trial in the U.S. Senate. So it’s highly unlikely that he will mention his unpaid bills from Atlantic City when he takes the stage Tuesday night at the Wildwoods Convention Center.

Former Workers Feel the Sting

As for the carpenters, electricians, plumbers, window installers and other contractors who built Trump’s Taj Mahal casino in Atlantic City three decades ago, the wounds from not being paid still fester.

“It’s terrible,” said Jenkins, who runs Triad Building Specialties. “I can’t stand Trump. I think he’s nothing but a snake oil salesman.”

Triad Building Specialties begn in the mid-1970s by Jenkins’ father. Jenkins was only 19 when he got the $300,000 contract to provide guardrails, doors, stalls, and paper dispensers for the nearly 300 public bathrooms at the Trump Taj Mahal casino overlooking the Atlantic City beachfront.

A Casino Built on Financial Sand

In Atlantic City, Trump bragged that the Taj Mahal — which he claimed had a price tag of $1.2 billion — was the “eighth wonder of the world.” Not only was it considered the largest casino anywhere, it was adorned with crystal chandeliers from Austria, hand-sewn carpets from Britain, Carrara marble from Italy and 70 onion domes that towered over the Atlantic City boardwalk.

But the Taj, as it came to be called, seems to have been built on financial sand.

What Trump didn’t say was that he financed the Taj with $700m worth of junk bonds. And what he did not tell the scores of contractors who worked on the overly lavish casino was that he could not pay their bills.

Triad Building Specialties ended up taking out a $40,000 loan just to pay its suppliers. And then the firm needed another decade just to pay off the loan. By the end of it, Triad had only received 40 cents on the dollar from Trump for its work on the Taj. Jenkins is now 49 years old and is the firm’s co-owner.

To be successful, it meant the Taj had to come up with $94m a year just to pay off its debts, and $1m a day to be profitable. Trump insisted the casino would make Atlantic City great again, returning the area to its prohibition-era glory days.

At one point in time, President Trump actually owned three casinos in Atlantic City. He employed nearly 8,000 citizens and accounted for nearly one-third of the Atlantic City area’s revenue.

But they eventually became unsustainable thanks to a mixture of enormous debts, rival venues, weak local demand, and negative press, which suggested Trump’s businesses were facilitating money laundering. This is something was later given credence when the Taj was fined $10 million for failing to report suspicious transactions.

 

Hard Rock Will Continue to Invest in Atlantic City, Despite Town’s Bad Shape

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Atlantic CityThe CEO of Hard Rock Atlantic City, Jim Allen, voiced his concerns that Atlantic City is “going in the wrong direction,” citing that the city in the worse shape it’s ever been since buying the Atlantic City casino nearly three years ago.

The resort is doing their part to keep employee morale high. After an employee meeting last Thursday, the Hard Rock handed out bonuses to nearly $2,900 full-time employees, totaling $2 million. Allen said while the company is willing and ready to be a part of a solution to build a better Atlantic City, it’s not confident over recent developments.

The City Needs Patching Up

One particular area of concern that comes up often is the lack of urgency when it comes to maintaining the surrounding areas. This includes keeping the streets clean and repairing anything within the environment that may affect consumer safety and working to prevent potential accidents. Allen notes that the streetlights have been out for two months on several blocks along Pacific Avenue:

“When you’re in a resort environment where safety and security is so important, if the city can’t get something fixed as simple as the street lighting, then maybe a change is needed,” he said.

Allen had humble career beginnings in the casino industry, when he started out as a cook at Bally’s Atlantic City over 40 years ago. He made a mere $6.11 an hour. Understanding the importance of keeping the hospitality industry alive in the town, he felt urged to meet with Mayor Marty Small to discuss plans for progress.

Recruiting the Mayor’s Help

On Thursday, Mayor Small stated that he’s been working with the electric company and state agency responsible for planning in the city to restore functioning traffic lights. That’s the first step. When asked about the impact he’s made and plans to move forward, he said this:

“I’ve been in office 103 days and we’ve already made changes, with plenty to come. I’m moving my agenda forward, and will meet with anyone that has the city’s best interest (at heart), which Jim Allen does.”

What’s Next Moving Forward

If the casino’s performance improves, Allen said the company will be looking to double bonuses next year. Although the hotel misses its 2019 business targets by 10%, it didn’t stop the generous and forward-thinking CEO to give the bonuses.

The motive is to motivate full-time workers to provide great customer service. Many of the workers received $250, while managers received bonuses on scales tied to their salary.

It’s a smart business move. If the city can’t improve its infrastructure, it can at least improve its level of service to keep guests coming to the door. Jill Tyron, an administrative assistant for Hard Rock Atlantic City said this about the free bonus the company received:

“What’s not to love about free money? I love it here. The people I work with are wonderful.”

The company plans to invest at least $15 million in capital expenditures in Atlantic City in 2020, one of those expenditures including an expanded sports betting operation.

Rio Suite Hotel Celebrates 30 Years as Trendsetting Las Vegas Resort

Rio Suite Hotel in Las VegasBring out your Mardi Gras masks, because it’s time to celebrate the Rio Suite Hotel’s 30th birthday. The groundbreaking hotel shook up the Las Vegas resort scene when it opened on Jan. 15, 1990.

With the countless number of resorts on the Las Vegas scene now, it’s easy to forget how the Rio pioneered the way to the norm that’s industry standard today. The Rio was the first of its kind when it put the buffet kitchen in the dining area, when it opened a large-scale nightclub, and when it enticed crowds to its pool with white sands and exotic parties.

The off-Strip Brazilian-themed property also had the first all-suite resort in Las Vegas, with floor-to-ceiling glass in all the rooms. They also perfected the art of on-resort entertainment, with Danny Gans being the first start headliner to command a $100 ticket per show. Magic-show entertainers, Penn and Teller, have been serving laughs at their show that’s been running on the property since 2001.

Rio’s Highlights Over the Years

The Rio has had a colorful past thirty years indeed. Early visitors will recall being greeted by women dressed in colorful costumes with artificial fruit baskets on their heads.

In its heyday, it hosted its famous “Masquerade Show in the Sky,” that Rio guests were able to enjoy several times a night. It’s a much-missed attraction that amused both tourists and locals from Feb. 7, 1997, to its final performance on March 30, 2013.

The color spectacle included performer-laden floats traveling along a track on the ceiling and singers and dancers performing on a two-story, floor-level stage. Audience members can remember eagerly trying to catch beads tossed by performers.

In 1998, the Rio opened its Convention Center, that would later set the stage for the 2005 World Series of Poker Tournament. In 2006, Harrah’s purchased Caesars properties, including the Rio, for $9 billion. Caesars sponsorship of the WSOP helped fill the hotel to maximum capacity.

It was even the home of the late Prince’s residency in the 2000s.

The Chippendales show has also had its famous run there, usually falling under the first-time Vegas visitor’s to-see list.

New Owner: Looking To the Future

On Dec. 5, 2019, the newly formed Dreamscape Companies, became the new owner of the hotel in a $516.3 million deal. It has major hopes bringing the property back to its former glory.

Dreamscape will have plenty of lead time to determine how to drive customers to the 2,500-suite off-Strip property. Caesars Entertainment will continue to operate the building for two years with an option for a third year before Dreamscape takes over with its own management team, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing. Caesars will be paying rent of $45 million annually. This is all while Dreamscape strategizes on to whom and how it will exactly begin to advertise the resort.

The 22 acres of unused land, part of the 90-acre Rio campus, also provides potential opportunity, with potential development plans possibly including a Major League Baseball stadium, though it hasn’t been confirmed.

Even with the new management and ownership, the Rio will still continue to host Caesars’ popular World Series of Poker tournament, at least next year. The hosting rights still remain with Caesars Entertainment, but they will eventually make decisions on where to host the event in the future. The 2019 WSOP event attracted a record of more than 154,000 entrants.