Should casinos cater to Millennials and book acts like Iggy Azalea? Or should they stick to the Baby Boomer favorites like Celine Dion and Cher to keep rooms filled and roulette wheels spinning? Casino operator opinions vary.
MGM Grand is betting big on Cher's residency at its new complex outside Washington, D.C. The Theater at MGM National Harbor, an intimate 3,000-seat entertainment venue, books A-list performers normally reserved for arena-sized settings, including Cher, Ricky Martin, Sting, Lionel Richie, Duran Duran and others.
Meanwhile, Treasure Island, 40 miles southeast of Minneapolis, is betting on younger performers such as Iggy Azalea and Rachel Platten that appeal to Millennials.
Some casinos are relying on video game-inspired technologies to tempt younger players. In February, Nevada and New Jersey passed legislation allowing for the introduction of skill-based games in casinos as a way to draw in younger players. Imagine Bejeweled Blitz machines and baccarat side by side.
Meanwhile, the CEO of regional casino venue operator Penn National, prefers old-school acts.“I’m of the belief that focusing in on millennials is not going to produce good economic results,” he said.