And for those who are worried about Las Vegas rebounding one might pause to reflect just how many Pennsylvanians will abandon 3:2 Blackjack and trek all the way to Vegas to play 6:5 blackjack?
True, but PA also doesn't have a giant Eiffel Tower replica, tons of 4- and 5-star restaurants, weekly headliners, ultra-hip nightclubs...Pittsburgh and Philly do have some of this, but nowhere near on the same level...
And that's not even getting into the weather up here. (Hint: Both of the Pittsburgh-area casinos were forced to close for a couple days back in February during a massive snowstorm because their employees couldn't get to work.)
PA does have many tourist attractions of its own though, some of which would go well with a casino trip. For example, Hollywood Casino in Grantville, PA is only about 10 minutes from Hershey and its massive amusement park. I bet a lot of folks drop their kids off there for the day and then go up to play slots.
But that's still very much a family activity (a dysfunctional family, anyway :), which I guess goes back to how Las Vegas should differentiate itself. It got by for years as an "adult playground" offering vices one couldn't normally find in other parts of the country...but now that its main vice is found on every street corner in some states, and isn't really looked at as a vice so much as a source of government revenue, it can't coast by on reputation alone anymore.
The bar has been raised. Let loose. Turn Vegas into a genuine adult playground again. Legalize drugs (at least marijuana) and prostitution. Do everything you can to attract the younger crowd. The older folks have already made their choice to go to their local slot parlors, in PA and elsewhere, every week. And with the extreme hassles of flying today, I can't say I blame them much.
Years ago: Bellagio Fountains, Mirage Volcano and Treasure Island's Pirate Attack were free attractions ... and other casinos were said to be mooching the attendees much the way PornSlappers try to leech off someone else's customers.
Now, all the money goes into developing things such as City Center (which ain't got no themes) or to developing Wynn and Encore which got their themes INSIDE where the paying customers enjoy them and don't get shanghied to other casinos.
So its no more Pyramids and Pirates as Free Attractions. So what is the one quarter sized Eiffel tower? Is it free? Even the roulette wheel has American rules there.
Hershey and Slots tie-ins? Why not. Anything that says "Hey, why trek to Vegas... we got Vegas right here and you don't need to take your shoes off and get x-rayed to enjoy our casino".
Stratosphere has some dohicky on their rooftop... I ain't gonna go to Vegas for it. Others might. They probably won't stay at the Strat though or even gamble there.
Every time the economy falters, the girls in Vegas get bolder because the casinos need the business, but legalize it? No. Once it becomes legal its uncontrollable. Casinos want control. Control over the visitors, control over the attractions, control over the sidewalks, control over the RV parks, control over the water slides and day care sites.
Turn Vegas into a genuine adult playground again. Legalize drugs (at least marijuana) and prostitution. Do everything you can to attract the younger crowd. The older folks have already made their choice to go to their local slot parlors, in PA and elsewhere, every week. And with the extreme hassles of flying today, I can't say I blame them much.
I think the tide around the world is turning against legalizing prostitution. In Europe where the laws have traditionally been much easier than those in the USA, the worldwide human trafficing business has soured people against legal prostitution.
Its clear that Las Vegas is no longer the only "gambling spot" ...
and the casinos are waking up to the realization that there are alternative destinations in both the Online World as well as in the Real World.
Las Vegas has the reputation and the allure ... but a wide variety of other places seem to have the customers.
Vegas will have the show girls and the zillions of cocktail waitresses but local Indian casinos will simply always be available to provide some semblance of "Vegas". Even if the local casinos bear about as much resemblance to Vegas as a "Vegas Night" charity event bears to real gambling.