When the race and sportsbook at the Rampart Casino was moved to a different area a couple of years ago, it was with March in mind.
Certainly, having more space and amenities helps during football season. But when the NCAA Tournament tips off next week, the extra space and state-of-the-art video system will really come to the fore.
“We’re really looking forward to March Madness,” said Duane Colucci the book’s assistant manager. “We had a great response last year and this year, with the field so wide open, we think we’re going to be extremely busy.”
To that end, Rampart will open up Addison’s Lounge for the first four days of the NCAA Tournament. All the games will be on and while there won’t be any satellite betting stations in Addison’s, the sportsbook is a 3-point shot away and there is also a kiosk available at the book.
“We’ve seen the popularity of the kiosks at South Point, our sister property, and we’re looking to add two or three more in time for football season,” Colucci said. “We also are seeing more people betting with their (phone) app and I’d encourage anyone who’s coming to town and coming to the Rampart to sign up for the app and avoid the lines.
“You just need a player’s card, which is free, and in a few minutes, you’re all set and you can just bet from your seat.”
The Rampart has upgraded the entire casino in the last couple of years. Most recently, it overhauled its Market Place Buffet as well as its coffee shop, rebranding it as the Earl Grey Cafe. The Clubhouse Deli next to the race and sportsbook has proved to be popular with patrons.
“It’s been a real boost to the property,” Colucci said of the improved dining options. “There’s such a wide variety of (dining) options. And if you don’t want to leave your seat during the games for a long period, we’ll have our hot dog cart so you can grab something quick.”
As a neighborhood casino in Summerlin, the Rampart offers free parking in its recently expanded garage, lots of promotions for players who are in their loyalty program and some special contests for March Madness.
Players who accumulate 1,000 points the same day get a free entry into the Engaged Nation March Mania online promotion. There will be a Beat The Bookie promotion where players who can outpace sportsbook director Steve Mikkelson’s score in week one or week two will win $5,000 in free slot play.
There will also be a Bad Beat Contest. If you have a ticket on a higher seeded team and that team loses, you are entered in a drawing for prizes. You must be present in the sportsbook to win.
Finally, there’s a $5 Jackpot Card where you can win $10,000 by picking the most winners each day in the first and second rounds.
“We’re in a competitive environment so we have to be aggressive in promoting the Rampart,” Colucci said. “But if you don’t want to be on the Strip and you want to come out to Summerlin, we would love to see you.
“Our video wall in our book is amazing. We’re big on providing great customer service. We can provide a more personal touch in dealing with our customers.”
Colucci remembers his days as a ticket writer at the original Rampart book. It was a cozy place where everyone knew each other and it was like meeting at the barber shop. When the Rampart moved the race and sports book to its new location, it was important to maintain that intimacy where the players felt like they were still comfortable.
“We never forgot our roots,” he said. “I think that’s one of the things that has always made us special. We know our customers and they know us. Our ticket writers are always courteous and friendly. If you need a drink, the (cocktail) waitresses are always around and I think those personal touches are so important.”
And if you venture outside the book to gamble, you’ll find the most current machines and plenty of table games.
“Hey, we still pay 3-to-2 on Blackjack,” Colucci said, “Not many places can say that these days.
“We always have a lot of fun promotions going on. March is a great month for us. You’ve got the (NCAA) Tournament. You’ve got St. Patrick’s Day. It’s a great time of the year.”