The once prosperous gambling world of Atlantic City may be feeling the financial pinch, but it’s not going to be squeezed out of the business without a fight. The Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa has laced up its gloves and locked in the gum shield with the introduction of in-room gaming.
In a move that could turn the residents of Borgata into the residents of the Walt Disney classic WALL-E, hotel guests will not even have to leave their room to gamble. Instead of being an expensive piece of art that parades the guest names, the 46-inch LED flat-screen televisions will now contain video poker and video slots.
To take advantage of this latest innovation, hotel guests need to register for a My Borgata rewards card. Then during check-in they can set up an E-Casino account where they can deposit up to $2,500 per day. The option for In-Room Gaming is then selected from the TV remote control in the room. A simple PIN number – already etched into your rewards card – and a password handed to you at check-in is all that stands in your way of a nice comfortable spin of a few wheels.
“It’s all predicated on having an electronic account,” said John Forelli Vice President of IT at Borgata in an interview with the Philly.com, “With a TV, there’s no method for accepting cash or swiping a credit card, so you have to use electronic credits.”
Electronic credits or not this is a bold move by Borgata, a casino that has always been seen as the cutting edge of technology in Atlantic City. It’s the first move into the promising business of mobile gaming. A move that will start in the bedroom and hopefully one day spread to the swimming pools, restaurants and lobbies of the casino through mobile apps. The customer is king, and this customer wants to be able to gamble on the move, and from the comfort of his or her own private surroundings.
The unveiling of In-Room gambling comes just a week after New Jersey State Gov. Chris Christie gave the green light for a 10-year trial for online gaming, that will make it the third state behind Nevada and Delaware to offer online gambling options.
“We’re subtly getting customers acclimated to electronic gaming, both handhelds and Internet.” Said Forelli.