Q&A: Online, Onsite & In the Game at Resorts AC
If you’re new to online gambling, here’s your classroom.
Resorts iGaming Lounge is a sleek, sophisticated, high-tech alcove just off the main casino floor at Resorts Atlantic City. The first internet gaming lounge in the United States—and possibly in the world—the 1,000-square-foot hub debuted in April 2015, shortly after the launch of ResortsCasino.com.
The contemporary space includes communal touch-screen gaming tables (bring your buds); interactive lounge areas with tablet stands; a colorful video wall; and friendly attendants who are standing by to help get beginners in the game.
Online players are automatically signed up for Resorts Rewards and can earn complimentary hotel stays, discounts on entertainment, room upgrades, free cash for points and other goodies.
We talked about this innovative space with Ed Andrewes, CEO of EA Gaming Consultancy, who’s running the show at Resorts iGaming Lounge.
iGamingPlayer.com: This is a first in the industry, and fittingly, it’s located in Atlantic City’s first casino. What was the thinking behind the iGaming Lounge, which acts as a sort of bridge between the brick-and-mortar experience and the online games you play at home in your jammies?
Andrewes: Internet gaming was huge in New Jersey, so we set this up as a training ground for people who want to learn to play online. The reps here show our customers how the games and devices work, and then encourage them to download the app onto their own devices. We want them to feel familiar enough so they can play when they go home.
Once you download the app, the games are pretty intuitive and easy to play. You can also come here, play here and win here.
Who’s most likely to drop by? From the look of it, this is not necessarily a hangout for millennials.
This is real-money gaming, so the target market is people 35 to 50, which reflects the customer base that comes on-property. But all kinds of demographics come in and are welcome.
For the most part, millennials are still busy going to nightclubs and bars, and while we should look at what will appeal to millennials when they get to the target age, we can’t concentrate too much on them right now. In my personal view, roulette and blackjack have been popular games for generations, and there’s no reason that should change in the future because of the place people play or the device they play on.
How many games does Resorts offer online, and what are some of the most popular titles?
We have more than 300 games, more than anyone in New Jersey. Quite often, the popular games are those that are popular in the casino itself—Starburst, Wheel of Fortune, Cleopatra—but we also have a whole range of games that are only available online, like Guns N’ Roses slots. And people can play them anywhere in New Jersey on their device.
This is a beautiful space, pretty lively even on a weekday afternoon. Does it stay busy?
The activity here pretty much reflects what’s going on in the casino. On weekends it will likely be busier.
Any other innovations in the works?
We’re going to be offering virtual sports betting here soon—simulated horse races, greyhound races, tennis matches and boxing matches. We should have that in the lounge within a couple of months.
We also just got permission from the Division of Gaming Enforcement to add a cashier in the lounge, so people can deposit and play here rather than have to go over to the casino cage.
For more about this uber-cool spot, which lets you enjoy an online, one-of-a-kind gaming experience just steps from the excitement of the traditional casino floor, visit the iGaming Lounge, next to Bar One on the main floor at Resorts Casino Hotel on the Atlantic City Boardwalk. Or get started at resortac.com/online-casino.