Casinos usually have one big objective: draw guests in and entice them to stay for as long as possible. It has been said that casinos purposely don’t put clocks on the walls, give out free drinks and pump oxygen into the building to keep people chatting, gambling and spending, spending, spending.
Consequently, all technology integration projects taking place in a casino should have the same thing in common. In AV speak, we call this enhancing the guest experience. The technology commercial integrators install in these spaces should entice and attract, creating an exciting environment for casino guests.
McCann Systems knows a thing or two about this. The integration firm has outfitted many casinos along the Las Vegas Strip with AV and communication solutions, particularly those with race and sport books, alongside CG Technology. One of its most impressive projects was completed this past February, just in time for a grand opening around Super Bowl 50.
The original Race & Sports Book at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas was already an impressive space. Packed with high-definition, blended projection, it was designed, engineered and integrated by McCann Systems years ago. The trouble was that it was located out of sight on the second floor of the Cosmopolitan. It was also first and foremost a transactional space. Guests came, made their bets and went on their way.
The Cosmopolitan wanted to create a place for guests to eat, drink, play and spend time. So when it relocated the Race & Sports Book to the ground floor, right by the entrance from the strip, the hotel and casino called McCann Systems back to create a revitalized version of the original space.
McCann worked alongside Marnell Companies, an architect and construction management firm, the Cosmopolitan and CG Technology in the planning and design of the new Race & Sports Book. AV integration officially began in mid-December 2015, which means McCann’s crew was working around the clock with only a month and change before the grand opening.
The new space is over 6,000 square feet, just about double the size of the original space. It is a large, attention-grabbing room that represents the marriage of restaurant, game room and casino.
1. Keep in mind the overall objective of the market you’re servicing; different markets aim for different goals.
2. Think about the client’s client — especially in the casino market, try to design the system that will entice and excite your customer’s customer.
3. Custom software makes it easy for end users to create, manage and operate their own content even after you’ve left the job site.
End User Takeaways:
1. Consider integrated technology when you want to perform any task — showing signage, making processes easier, connecting with customers over social media, etc.
2. Hire integrators who have experience in your particular market or those you’ve worked with before and trust to do a good job.
3. Sometimes a simple iPad can be used to enhance a space or provide easy-to-operate control or automation.
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The main attraction is an enormous, curved Christie Digital Velvet 3mm LED video wall showing the day’s top sporting events and spanning 56 feet wide x 8 feet tall. The video wall displays up to 16 independent video steams simultaneously. Perhaps the best part of the wall is that the content is easily configured by the end user through custom-created drag-and-drop software.
A second video wall mirrors the first on the opposite wall, featuring similar curvature and 3mm pixel LEDs. The 28 foot wide x 8 foot tall video wall shows eight windows of races for guests to watch the live action while they place bets, chow down at the bar or play some foosball.
For the bettors, two giant odds boards, both reaching 22 feet wide x 6 feet tall, show running stats that help guests estimate their odds of winning. The content is fed directly from a single PC, running CG Technology’s proprietary display software. In addition, a 4mm LED ticket encompasses the bar, 110 feet around and 2 feet tall, with real-time sports data managed by C-Scape JetStream LED Ticker Software. Custom cabinets were created for the LED ticker corners to ensure an uninterrupted pixel pitch around the sharp 90-degree angles.
Throughout the entire system, the end user has complete command over the content creation, formatting and operation through a highly intuitive, user-friendly control system. The platform is supported by a robust back-end infrastructure, as 24 sports and 12 race feeds need to be displayed simultaneously to numerous digital outputs each day. This required a custom-built distribution system. Several audio zones make it possible to broadcast different games at once with optimum clarity.
Past the bar, the space takes on a game room feel, with foosball and billiards, lounge area signage and VIP booths complete with their own 90-inch monitors controlled by iPads.
McCann Systems explains that this kind of large-scale installation would not have been possible without coordination between all parties involved. Before and even during the renovation process, McCann’s engineers were hard at work with system designs and mock-ups. Each step was meticulously planned, says McCann, since the success of each project segment depended on the one prior.
Today, the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas has hit the jackpot. Ample seating, great sightlines, complimentary bar games and cutting-edge technology have completely transformed the Race & Sports Book into a major player on the Las Vegas Strip.