Internet Bingo Meets Las Vegas

It had to happen eventually; the Las Vegas strip’s only bingo room has gone virtual. The Rivera casino, a Las Vegas landmark, is searching for new ways to attract new customers and has turned to the internet to achieve this goal. Currently the Rivera is working with Buffalo Studios, the creators of the popular Bingo Blitz games on Facebook. Buffalo Studios is creating new software to enable the Rivera to join the internet bingo industry.

Andy Choy, CEO of the Rivera, said that Facebook users will be able to play Bingo Blitz on the Rivera’s Facebook page and win prizes. Players will also be able to access some very attractive promotions. The website is up and running and some of the available promotions include a free trip to the Rivera’s $200,000 bingo tournament that is held twice a year. After years of decline the Rivera opened the only bingo room on the Las Vegas strip. The move was a good one and has already attracted many bingo players who love the newly built bingo room.

In 2010 the Rivera declared bankruptcy and opened the bingo room in an attempt to shore up its troubled finances. A month after the bingo room was opened the Rivera sold its casino in Black Hawk, Colorado for $76 million. The Rivera has been challenged by its relatively isolated location on the North Strip, once the heart of the Vegas casino industry. CEO Choy told reporters “The property just kind of lost relevance. What we are really trying to do now to bring it out of bankruptcy is to make it relevant in today’s market place.”

The partnership with Buffalo Studios and Bingo Blitz is designed to attract youthful gamblers. Bingo Blitz is one of the most popular games on Facebook and has millions of regular users. Las Vegas casinos once offered bingo as a way to get gamblers in their doors to play slot machines between games. In 1995 there were five casinos offering bingo on the strip. In later years most of the casinos replaced bingo with slot machines which are more lucrative for casino operators. David Schwartz, director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Stated “Bingo is very popular, but it has a very small margin for the casinos. It was never a game that you would see in a real high-end resort.”

The Rivera has long been a Las Vegas landmark. The 2,075-room Riviera opened in 1955 and has over 800 slot machines on its 100,000 square foot casino floor. The Rivera is trying to appeal to players who want to save money and play bingo. Online players can win prizes that can be redeemed at the Rivera and the casino hopes to make bingo popular once again in Las Vegas.