In an effort to reverse its declining revenues, Casino de Montreal launched a social play space targeting young gamers on December 10.
Casino de Montreal
Nicknamed The Zone, this social sphere aims to bring online interactivity to the gaming atmosphere and target youth who like game playing but dislike the traditional casino environment. Will this new gamble pay off for Casino de Montreal as it did for the province’s Casino du Lac-Leamy?
The Zone collects 80 interactive gaming stations in a “playground” inside the casino. There, gamers can listen to popular music, watch games on giant screens, comment on the action and have their comments broadcast on the big screen, and collaborate with other gamers on group games.
Le Journal de Montreal notes that, despite countless attempts to improve revenues, “nothing goes to the Société des casinos du Québec.” Since 2009, provincial casinos have realized a revenue decrease of $73 million. From April to September 2014, Québec’s casinos lost $20 million. In addition to creating two Zone spaces in Québec casinos, the Société des casinos du Québec opened the province’s first nightclub at Casino du Lac-Leamy.
Increased competition from illegal poker rooms and online gaming sites has made it more challenging for Québec’s casinos to turn a profit. Casino spokesman Patrick Howe told Le Journal de Montreal that, “[The Zone] is a concept that comes from our strategy for the future casino. It is a product that meets the needs of young people.”
When young people do visit the casino, they typically bring several friends, spend $50 each, and stay for several hours. If all goes well, the Zone will increase the amount of time spent at the casino as well as the money spent on entertainment. The Société des casinos du Québec certainly needs a win to turn around years of decline. If the Zone works, expect to see more spaces like it across the province.