I recently wrote catch-up on all the new fees and belt tightening that we’ve seen in Las Vegas casinos over the past year or so. Now it's time to get back to the place in a casino where I belong. With the year ending it’s a good time to look back at the year in the sportsbook.
This has been a banner year for sports bettors in Las Vegas. It almost feels as if every casino has a new sportsbook. No less than ten casinos renovated their sportsbook this year and they came in all shapes and sizes.
Casino Royale finally has a sportsbook. Well, it's not quite a sportsbook. The casino has a William Hill ticket writer and sports betting kiosk at their new sports bar. Down the Vegas Strip, Caesars Palace finally upgraded their viewing experience with a great new display that might be the best on the Vegas Strip. CG Technology moved their book at the Cosmopolitan to the main floor and it doubled in size. It’s still not huge but the inclusion of billiards tables, blackjack, video poker and and other games make this one of the best sports bar and casino combinations in Las Vegas.
There's no arguing that the sportsbook should be the best part of a casino in Las Vegas. I’m getting goosebumps just writing about all the changes again. Here’s a quick rundown of the casinos in Las Vegas where you’ll find a new sportsbook experience.
The Cal renovated the entire casino this year. There are new hotel rooms, new restaurants and of course a new sportsbook and bar. There are new large TV’s, video poker machines, and three different areas to watch the games in this book. It’s not as large as the sportsbooks on the Vegas Strip, but this might be the best one to watch the games in downtown Las Vegas.
The Caesars Palace sportsbook is one of the most iconic in Las Vegas. Sadly, that shine had been fading over the years as it went uncared for. This year, Caesars Entertainment finally renovated! The new screens are among the best on the Vegas Strip and can be seen easily from the bar behind the main seating area. You should note that you’ll have to pay a minimum beverage charge to reserve seats in front of the screens on busy days.
The first thing I think of when discussing the future of Las Vegas casinos is the CG Technology sportsbook at the Cosmopolitan. This book is seamlessly a part of the casino floor and includes an 18 seat bar with video poker, blackjack tables and an assortment of bar games like foosball, shuffleboard and billiards. You can even order food from the nearby restaurant, The Henry. There are only about 100 seats in front of the screens so you’ll have to reserve seats if you want to watch the games on a busy sports day or night.
This is a very small low roller casino on the Vegas Strip. It’s nestled between The Venetian and Harrah’s and known for having $1 beer and cheap gambling. Casino Royale is the last casino on the Vegas Strip to add a sportsbook. Earlier this year Casino Royale added a new bar that includes a William Hill counter. There’s also a kiosk if you don’t feel like dealing with a human. This is more of a sports bar than a traditional sportsbook. The best feature might be that it’s only about 30 steps away from the door. This the closest location to place a sports bet on the Vegas Strip.
Caesars Entertainment quietly renovated this book just in time for football season. This wasn’t a major upgrade but an appropriate renovation for this mid-tier casino. The sportsbook and bar has new seating and bright new TV’s. This isn’t the "Big Book" experience you’ll find elsewhere on the Vegas Strip but it’s appropriate for the scope of the property and looks great.
Station Casinos (Green Valley Ranch, Sunset Station, Boulder Station, Santa Fe Station and Palace Station)
Sportsbook renovations in Las Vegas weren’t just for the tourists. Station Casinos upgraded almost all of their books this year. Each property received an update appropriate for the casino. For example, Green Valley Ranch now has the same beautiful screens as Red Rock. Sunset Station, Boulder Station, Santa Fe Station and Palace Station were upgraded to suit the space and casino.