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Caesars Entertainment using new type of gambling to attract millennials to Las Vegas

Posted: 11:38 PM, Apr 07, 2017
Updated: 2017-04-08 06:38:11Z

Visitors to Las Vegas are getting younger, and one of the casinos on the Strip is trying to rope in the millennials with a new kind of gambling.

Caesars Entertainment introduced skill-based gaming this week at Planet Hollywood hotel-casino.

In these twists on Texas Hold 'Em poker and blackjack, luck will only get you so far. The games pit players against each other, not the house. They compete for the same cards and have to make rapid-fire decisions about how best to improve their hands.

David Hoenemeyer, the regional president of Bally's, Paris and Planet Hollywood, says skill-based games capture the attention of millennials, who can be fickle.

"They want that interactive experience, that thought provoking [involvement] and not just be a zombie in front of a machine," Hoenemeyer said.

Young players pick up the action quickly, as well as the strategy involved.

The move into skill-based gambling comes on the heels of the latest data from the Las Vegas Visitors and Convention Authority about visitors to Las Vegas.

According to the report, 69 percent of visitors in 2016 gambled, but that's slightly down from previous years.

The more concerning number is only 4 percent of visitors came to town with the primary purpose of gambling. That number was 15 percent in 2013.

The statistics do show positive developments.

The average gambling budget for a visitor last year is up more than $100 from where it was five years ago. Finally, the average visitor's age was down three years from 2015, and 19 percent of visitors were in their 20s.