´Las Vegas´ reopening is welcome news for the gaming industry´ - Casey Clark, AGA
(Las Vegas, SoloAzar Exclusive).- One week from the complete casino reopening of downtown Las Vegas after more than a year of restrictions due to COVID-19 pandemic, Casey Clark, AGA’s senior vice president of strategic communications, granted an interview to SoloAzar to talk about the current situation of the games of chance sector.
What is your opinion about the end of casino restrictions in Las Vegas?
Las Vegas’ reopening is welcome news for the gaming industry. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit last year, all casinos nationwide were forced to close. Even after we were able to reopen our doors, we have been operating under capacity restrictions. The health and safety of our team members and customers has always been our highest priority. That has remained true throughout this gradual reopening process, and will continue to be gaming’s focus as we provide world-class entertainment in Las Vegas and gaming destinations all across the country.
How do you evaluate the performance of casinos last week?
Gaming revenue topped $1 billion in April, an 11% increase from the pre-pandemic April 2019, and weekend occupancy rates were nearly 85%. Gaming and hospitality are of course only two metrics of modern gaming’s success, and there are encouraging signs of increased tourism and the return of conventions and business meetings which are important to our business. We’re excited to bring the Global Gaming Expo (G2E) back to Las Vegas in October, which we have announced earlier.
What has been the public feedback?
There’s been significant pent-up demand to return to casinos. The data backs that up. The first quarter of 2021 saw the highest-grossing revenue totals ever in American gaming history (over $11 billion), a clear indicator that people are frequenting casinos all across the country. This is a great sign that the gaming industry and Las Vegas are on the right track for recovery.