Closing Down Poker Rooms: What Happens When Bean Counters Run Casinos
You’re looking at what used to be the poker room at the luxurious M Casino in Las Vegas.
Take a closer look. This photo wasn’t taken at 3 am. More like 3 pm during the weekend — prime time in the casino business.
Notice anything missing? How about people?
A few months ago, about a dozen poker tables were hauled away to make more room for more idiot slot machines. Here’s a first-hand look at the result.
I’ve visited the M Casino multiple times since the poker room closed down. This is pretty much the scene every single time I’ve walked by the room. Not a soul in the vicinity.
To be fair, the old poker room often had only a few games going at a time — sometimes more games during evenings and on weekends. But this wasn’t a busy poker room by any stretch of the imagination. However, the M Casino also ran a poker tournament series this summer which drew a nice turnout. I have no idea what the daily drop was in the poker room nor do I know what it cost to operate (actually I can make a pretty good guess based on my experience). But I’m willing to bet that the poker room brought in a hell of a lot more people than this depressing morgue of a slot pit.
I’m also willing to bet that those who came to play poker gambled here, as well. They dined at restaurants. Sometimes, they even brought friends and family along with them, no doubt who all spent money. Now, those same poker players have presumably gone elsewhere.
The M Casino is big. It’s nice and for the most part, very well run. Yet, I’ve never seen it filled anywhere to near capacity. So, what’s another 32 idiot machines gathering dust in an empty room where the poker room used to be going to accomplish? This is like adding another cup of water to the soup.
Folks, when you read news stories about disappointing quarterly reports and casino management shakeups, here’s one reason why.
What are these corporate bean counters thinking and why does anyone listen to them?