Welcome to GVR II, the nice reaction to sister Station Casinos property Red Rock.
"Competition forces the playing field to change and the bar to be raised," said VP of Race and Sports Operations Art Manteris, who in the past six months has seen the birth of Station hub Red Rock and the refurbishing of Fiesta Henderson and GVR.
"I actually like Green Valley Ranch as much as Red Rock," Manteris said last week when the new book at GVR was officially unveiled. "Casual players like the big screens at Red Rock better and I’m hearing that the daily race players will prefer GVR’s five screen setup."
The GVR expansion, not surprisingly, came as a reaction to the state-of-the-art Red Rock in Summerlin.
"With The District right next door and easy access to the 215, the GVR property here is now comparable to anywhere on the Strip and in Las Vegas," Manteris said. "This might be the coolest race and sports book around. And, the poker room is already jammed at 9 a.m."
GVR race and sports book director Kelly Downey watched the original property come up from dirt. Phase II was much easier to view and enjoy.
"We already had a nice book going," he said. "Now you build to improve. The seats we have with TVs at every table are almost too comfortable. You never want to get off them."
Downey said it’s easy to work for an organization that "knows how to do it right."
"Our new parking garage gives our customers more convenient access in and out of the book," he said. "The scrolling data boards will make it easier to follow the 80 games that go on in college football each Saturday. Plus using LED boards off projector screens instead of electric lights make the teams and numbers easier to read."
Downey led a private tour of the inner workings of the sports book, a place normally reserved only for authorized personnel.
"You can see here that technology changes all the time," Downey said. "Otherwise you get left behind. I remember the days of wallboards where you needed to have decent penmanship. Welcome to the 21st century."
”¡ Completion: Primarily Oct. 2006 with an entertainment lounge and more gaming scheduled for Spring 2007.
”¡ Cost: $110 million approx.
”¡ Casino: State of the art, 170-seat race and sports book featuring a 96-foot video wall powered by 18 projectors. New 22 table, 24 hour non-smoking Poker room. Additional casino floor space with more slot and video poker machines.
”¡ Hotel: 14,000 square foot additional meeting and convention space. Joins existing meeting space now totaling 79.000 square feet.
”¡ Parking: New three-level, 1,200 space parking garage. Entrance off Paseo Verde Parkway.
”¡ Dining: Tides Oyster Bar, Turf Grill.
”¡ Entertainment: 500-seat lounge / entertainment venue will feature recurring acts and touring headliners. Opening date Spring 2007.