When Caesars Entertainment opened The Linq (formerly Imperial Palace) in 2014, it was with the intent of offering a casino hotel for younger visitors to Las Vegas. Millennials of all types enjoy beer pong, music, and gambling at O’Sheas, a DJ with dancing girls and fancy cocktails at the 3535 area and a traditional casino experience elsewhere. Believe it or not, there are different types of millennials, and The Linq offers something for different preferences.
Las Vegas casinos are constantly evolving and trying to offer amenities that appeal to current and future customers. There was a time where sportsbooks in casinos were an amenity to give table game players a place to take a break from the action.
When The Linq opened, the casino had a traditional sportsbook as well as a sports bar called TAG. The original sportsbook just closed and is part of a new larger sports bar and sportsbook concept called “The Book.”
Variety of sportsbooks
Earlier this year we noted the variety of sportsbooks at MGM Resorts International casinos. The casino operator offers different sportsbook experiences at just about every casino. While traditional sportsbooks remain popular, there’s more than one way to build a sportsbook.
There’s no longer a one-size-fits-all sportsbook model in Las Vegas. The majority of casinos on the Vegas Strip today are owned by corporations and want to monetize every square inch of land they own. Some casino operators are taking this mindset to the sportsbook. It might come as a surprise to learn that casino operators don’t want people sitting around their valuable property not spending money.
Over the years, Caesars Entertainment has offered mostly a traditional style sportsbook at their Las Vegas properties. Last year they added a row of VIP seats that guest could reserve so they don’t have to scramble to find a seat on busy days. The Book is a step beyond the traditional sportsbook.
Introducing The Book
The new sportsbook at The Linq is called simply The Book. This is the latest evolution in what a sportsbook can be. Lagasse’s Stadium ushered in the restaurant and bar sportsbook in 2009. That concept can be seen at SLS Las Vegas and most recently at The Moneyline at Park MGM (formerly Monte Carlo).
The Book is far from a traditional sportsbook and plays to the younger demographic that The Linq has been targeting since it opened. This is as much an interactive sports bar as it’s a sportsbook. It’s designed for guests to take control of their gambling and gaming experience. Yes – The Book has a non-gambling gaming element with X-Box and augmented reality games. Here are some features at The Book.
- 87 televisions (some as large as 98”)
- The Vegas Strip’s highest resolution LED video wall (note the Westgate is not on the Vegas Strip)
- Fan Caves with couches, recliners, X-Box systems, virtual reality goggles, and waitress service
- 24 self-serve beer taps
- Tablets to eventually place wagers and order drinks (not operational yet)
- Bar with video poker
- General admission seating at the bar or annex
- Food truck
The Vegas experience
The Moneyline at Park MGM is more of a bar and restaurant with a sportsbook. The Book at The Linq is more of a bar with comfortable living room-style seating and sportsbook. Some Las Vegas sportsbooks like Mandalay Bay are receiving an update with new video screens. Some casino operators are creating entirely new sportsbooks that offer a different way of watching and wagering on sports.
It will take a lot of creativity at casinos and sportsbooks around the country to keep up with the Las Vegas sportsbook experience. The spaces are no longer only TVs and chairs. Depending on the casino you visit you’ll find that Las Vegas sportsbooks may offer huge screens, restaurants, bars, video games, bar games, and even traditional casino games.