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Victor H. Royer, Managing Editor   Contact:  VicNVegas@aol.com


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Save the Riviera! - by Victor "Vegas Vic" Royer 

@GamingAuthor

It is unfathomable to me that Las Vegas power-brokers have become so utterly stupid that they are systematically destroying and dismantling all that made Las Vegas great. And what are they doing to replace it? Building yet another series of bland convention halls, and a parking lot in the middle of the Strip.

And for what?

So that Las Vegas can get even more conventions, populated by endless streams of conventioneers, almost none of whom gamble.

OK, so MGM Resorts is salivating over a $300,000 dinner bill at the Bellagio that 25 diners dropped during the recent Consumer Electronics Show, while buying $15,000 bottles of wine with their steaks at the Prime Steakhouse. The “lucky” patron who footed the bill is said to be Shane Smith, CEO of Vice Media Inc., who is also reported to have won around $100,000 from the casino’s Blackjack tables. So, he added another $200,000 to the wad, and splurged in an orgy of multi-person mastication.

Now – if at least most of the people who attend a convention in Las Vegas would gamble like this, then I wouldn’t be all that upset over the death of the Riviera. After all, if we tear it down, and build another convention hall, maybe – just maybe – out of all the tens of thousands of extra conventioneers we might get another one like Mr. Smith. Perhaps we may even get a Mr. Jones. And if all goes well, maybe we can even get three or four of those conventioneers to gamble. Something.

But these aren’t the actual facts.

You see, this Mr. Smith is not a measure of the reality rule. He is what is commonly known as “an aberration”, meaning one of the few conventioneers who actually visit a casino, and then actually play in it.

But what about the rest of the time? The rest of these tens of thousands of conventioneers?

And that’s precisely the problem with this kind of thinking that’s prevailing among the powers-to-be that now control Las Vegas. They just don’t seem to think things all the way through. At least not like casino owners and operators should be thinking.

I guess the bigger question should be this:

How many of the other 25 guests that Mr. Smith treated to those $15,000 bottles of wine actually gambled in the casino?

And another question should perhaps be:

How many of all the other attendees of the Consumer Electronics Show did also gamble in the casino?

So – how much was Mr. Smith actually and really “worth” to MGM Resorts?

And how much were all the other attendees to the CES actually worth to the casinos of Las Vegas?

Did any of them gamble? Anything like Mr. Smith? Was there a Mr. Jones among them?

You see, the facts are simple – conventioneers just do not gamble. Period. And while Mr. Smith may be a maverick who has more than the “vice” in Vice Media Inc., to his credentials, the simple facts are that conventioneers like him aren’t usually found in the casinos.

So, how does this affect the Riviera?

Well, I guess it’s all a matter of perspective.

Destroying Las Vegas, tearing it down, shredding it to pieces, putting up endless rows of bland convention halls, parking lots, drugstores on every corner of the Strip, and more and more shopping malls and high-rise residential units.

Is that the perspective we really want for Las Vegas?

And what about the casinos?

Oh, yeah … you mean those annoying things that waste floor space where we can stick another convention hall? Oh, don’t worry … we’re on top of that one. We’ll be tearing it all down soon enough.

And so, now comes the death of the Riviera.

As if it wasn’t enough that everything that was once great about Las Vegas has already been destroyed. Now one of the few surviving great icons of the greatness of Las Vegas is being bought by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA), and they are going to tear it down, shred it, destroy it, bury it. And then do what?

They are going to replace it with yet another convention hall for what they are calling “The Global Business District.”

And what will this do?

It will attract more conventions flooded with people who don’t gamble. Yes, it will pump around $300 million per year into the “non-gaming” economy. But the casinos – even when run badly – still pump more than $1 BILLION into that same economy every month!

So, what else will this “Global Business District” do for Las Vegas?

It will increase traffic jams and pack the strip with business suits instead of gamblers. (Mr. Smith and his Blackjack prowess notwithstanding.)

It will drive away visitors who come to see and experience “Las Vegas”, and now, instead, will find bland convention halls, Bus Depots, and parking lots.

This is already happening. Have you been to Las Vegas recently? Have you seen the destruction of all that was once great?

The Strip is packed with Palm trees, which do nothing to “beautify” the Strip. All they do is block the neon. What little is left of it, that is. Palm trees are synonymous with Hollywood, and California, and Beverly Hills. Las Vegas used to be famous as “The Neon Jungle.” But now, after these power-brokers who are destroying it get through with their heavy-handed and misguided mayhem, Las Vegas will instead become known as “The Boulevard of broken dreams, once great and shining with bright lights, and now buried in the dust of dull and grey convention halls.”

And, oh, by the way – if you’re wondering how the thinking is going among casino owners and operators who ignore the casino – in the fourth quarter that ended Dec. 31, 2014, MGM Resorts reported a net loss of $342.3 million, compared with a loss of $56.8 million in the same quarter a year ago. The result translated into a loss per share of 70 cents, compared to a loss of 12 cents per share last year.

So, who’s the winner here?

No one.

And that’s the real cost of short-sighted thinking that’s destroying Las Vegas.

Save the Riviera!

At least do something right – for once.

http://www.gofundme.com/SaveTheRiviera



New IGT Slot Machines

Several exciting and new IGT slot machines have been recently released, and are now available in all major casinos in Las Vegas. Among them are Candy Bars, Wolf Run 2, a new Wheel of Fortune, Megabucks, and Dolly Parton.

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Less Sin, More City?
 
In Nevada, there is no income tax. And if you've ever been to Las Vegas then you know why — they don't need one.

More than 30 million tourists a year stumble down the Las Vegas Strip, and many of those tourists come to gamble, leaving behind a ridiculous amount of money. For decades, business boomed.

But the financial collapse hit Las Vegas hard. Despite what people had been saying for years, the gaming industry is not recession-proof. According to the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, casino revenues on the Vegas strip dropped for 22 straight months during the last recession, and the city became the unofficial foreclosure capital of the U.S.

The city is now taking steps to claw its way back. In doing so, it may emerge as more than a one-economy town.

For the complete article, please click on this link: http://www.npr.org/2013/11/24/247054774/reviving-las-vegas-with-less-sin-more-city



New Shops at the Tropicana

When a multimillion-dollar retail project debuts at the Tropicana Las Vegas, the hotel-casino’s chief executive expects the new retailers will transform the south end of the Strip.

Tropicana Las Vegas Chairman and CEO Alex Yemenidjian says the project, which won’t break ground until next year, is crucial to the historic property’s continued transformation. The 1,467-room hotel-casino has undergone continuous renovations and changes to its amenities since Onex Corp. purchased 58 percent of the property’s debt and took it out of bankruptcy in 2009.

“We have been in construction mode for almost four years,” Yemenidjian said. “We spent our money indoors and haven’t spent any money outdoors.”

The Tropicana’s frontage will be transformed into a 275,000-square-foot, two-level, enclosed shopping mall with 165,000 square feet of new retail, a food-court and Strip-facing restaurants. Yemenidjian declined to identify potential tenants.

“We are hoping to break ground in the first half of next year and complete the project by the end of 2015,” Yemenidjian said.

One story of the two-story development will sit atop the casino, forcing the property to remove the Tiffany glass over the gaming pits.

For the complete story, please click on this link: http://www.reviewjournal.com/business/tropicana-chief-sees-new-retailers-property-transforming-south-strip



Steve Wynn Compares Stopping Online Gaming to Prohibition

 
Wynn Resorts Ltd. Chairman Steve Wynn said Monday he’s undecided whether New Jersey’s decision to legalize online gaming will have a major impact on efforts in Congress to pass any federal legislation legalizing online poker.

“I’m not sure as I stand here where online gaming is going,” Wynn said. “Within the state of New Jersey it’s legal. Its status in America is much in doubt.”

Wynn said Sheldon Adelson’s point that there is a lack of control with online gaming “resonates with a lot of people.”

Citing moral concerns, Adelson, CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corp., created a group, the Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling, to push for legislation to ban online gaming in the United States.
The group also wants the FBI to study law-enforcement related issues. Adelson’s effort would also ban online gaming already underway in Nevada and Delaware.

New Jersey begins taking bets today. Other states are considering similar measures that would introduce online gaming.

“On the other hand, playing poker is America, and outlawing poker is like the Volstead Act where they outlawed beer,” Wynn told reporters in the Wynn Las Vegas atrium following the unveiling of two floral sculptures designed by Preston Bailey.

Wynn said you can outlaw online gaming but “people are going to do it anyway.” A recent survey by H2 Gambling Capital found illegal online gambling generated $2.6 billion last year in the United States.

“I think it’s questionable whether Sheldon will be able to stop it, which is not to say he is wrong,” Wynn said. “I just think this sort of thing has a life of its own. I‘m neither a proponent nor opponent of it. I’m an observer of this process and the chairman of a publicly traded company that is required to pay attention to such things.”
 

 


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The Walking Dead Slot Game is based on AMC’s hit TV series, and the series continues to be the number one show on television across all cable and broadcast networks. AMC’s leading brand combined with Aristocrat’s superior math and the experience of Aristocrat’s surround sound iChair will attract a horde of new players in a game that challenges players to win the fight for survival.

This engrossing, dynamic game is housed in the VERVEhd cabinet and is packed with clips from the show, features, and an abundance of bonus opportunities.

Bonus features include “Reel Growth,” where reels two, three, four and five will randomly grow to a height of 5 inches to 7 inches high; “Wild Attack,” where random positions in Reel Growth are replaced with Wilds; and “The Horde,” where the horde reveals a winning combination on the reels in Reel Growth.

In “Atlanta Wheel Bonus,” players win credits, jackpots, CDC Wheel or Escape from Atlanta Free Games. In “CDC Wheel,” players win credits, multiple prizes with the Grenade or trigger Walker Bonus spins with a multiplier.

For more information, visit www.aristocrat-us.com

 

 


Betty Boop’s World Tour — Bally Technologies

Betty Boop is back and taking the world by storm in Betty Boop’s World Tour. Brought to you by Bally Technologies, this soon-to-be player favorite is available on the beautifully designed ALPHA 2 Pro Curve. The stunning graphics, dynamic lighting, and single-level optional internal/external progressive are sure to invite your players to join Betty and see all that this game has to offer.

This three-reel, single-line, three credits max bet game is available in denominations from 25-cents to $20,000. Betty Boop’s World Tour features the World Tour Bonus and the Betty Boop Jackpot. The World Tour feature is triggered when the World Tour symbol lands on the third reel. Players start the bonus with an initial credit award and can win either a multiplier or up to 1,100 credits.
 
The Betty Boop Jackpot is won when the Betty Boop Jackpot symbols hit on reels one, two, and three.

For more information on Betty Boop’s World Tour, visit www.BallyTech.com


Table Games are Key to Las Vegas Future
 
When it comes to gaming in Nevada, table games remain an important part of the casino layout and revenue. As online gaming continues its expansion, table games will become even more important to the financial health of a casino floor, one industry observer said.

“Live table play remains a unique (experience) that cannot be replicated online,” David G. Schwartz, director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, said Tuesday in an hourlong presentation at the Table Games Conference at Paris Las Vegas.

Schwartz said the slot experience is now replicated across many “platforms,” with no real benefit to playing in a casino besides drink service and cardboard checks given to winners of slot jackpots.

“Now is the time to invest in table game players,” Schwartz told about 140 conference attendees. “Not in 10 years when the next generation (of casual gamblers) has gone digital. Invest now while they are still there.”

For the complete story, please click this link: http://www.reviewjournal.com/business/table-games-called-vital-key-casinos-future





 

 



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