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Dan Ippolito

As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and he writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports.

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Casino City’s Friday Five: Slot jackpots and new rooms edition

20 Sep 2019

By Dan Ippolito
Earlier this summer, the Plaza Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas announced a $15 million renovation to the property. Last Friday, the resort introduced a transformation as part of the renovation. Also this week, we saw several jackpots awarded at land-based casinos, a blackjack offering at Intertops Poker and Pennsylvania sportsbooks bringing in massive numbers.

Let’s start with some jackpots from International Game Technology:

5. Three IGT jackpots awarded in August
In August, International Game Technology slot machines paid out three massive jackpots.

- On 21 August, a Wheel of Fortune slots player won a $2,457,232 jackpot at Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa Rancho Mirage in Rancho Mirage, California.

- On 20 August, a Powerbucks slots player won a CA$1,060,703 jackpot playing Wheel of Fortune Winning Wedges at Treasure Cove Casino and Bingo in British Columbia, Canada.

- On 10 August, a Wheel of Fortune slots player won a $2,142,106 jackpot at Silver Legacy Resort Casino at THE ROW in Reno, Nevada.

4. 50th jackpot awarded on 777 Bourbon Street
$uper Hit$ Jackpot$ from Aristocrat Gaming has paid out its 50th jackpot as of Monday. A player hit the 50th jackpot on the 777 Bourbon Street Game at RiverStar Casino in Oklahoma.

This jackpot pushed the winnings from $uper Hit$ Jackpot$ to $21,863,819.30 in jackpot payouts since it went live in July 2015.

“We are thrilled to announce this 50th $uper Hit$ Jackpot$ award. Players everywhere love Aristocrat Class II games, and the added possibility to win a super jackpot adds to the fun,” said Nathan Drane, vice president of commercial strategy for game sales. “$uper Hit$ Jackpot$ was a game-changing innovation, and our teams continue to create new games and ways for players to maximize their gaming experience.”

3. Intertops offering $2,000 blackjack jackpots
From 16 to 22 September, players at Intertops Poker that win designated blackjack hands will receive a $5-$500 bonus. Also, a total of $2,000 in bonuses will be paid to players that hit suited blackjacks, Small Suite Blackjacks and Big Suite Blackjacks.

A $5 bonus will be paid instantly for Suited Blackjacks. Small Suite Blackjacks – hands that total 21 and include a 6, 7 and 8 (in any order) — win a $10 bonus. Big Suite Blackjacks (A, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6) are paid a $25 bonus. A Suited Big Suite Blackjack wins $500.

Only one player will win $500 for a Suited Big Suite Blackjack. However, 100 players will win bonuses for suited Blackjacks, 50 will win bonuses for Small Suite Blackjacks and the first 20 players to hit a Big Suite Blackjack will win bonuses. The $2,000 in bonuses will be given out on Sunday night.

2. Pennsylvania sportsbooks generate $109 million handle
In August, Pennsylvania sportsbooks broke a record by bringing in $109 million in bets.

“Sports bettors almost universally bet on football, so it is no surprise that even with just one full week of college football games and NFL futures to bet on, that Pennsylvania would experience a significant uptick,” said Jessica Welman, sports betting analyst for “But with the NFL season now underway and more sportsbooks online, August’s successes are just a precursor to much bigger things ahead.”

According to data released on Monday, the handle from online and retail sportsbooks was up 84% from the previous record of $59.3 million set in July. Online bets increased from $39 million in July to $83.2 million in August, representing 76% of the state’s total handle, up from 65.7% in July. By comparison, about 85% of sports bets in New Jersey are made online.

SugarHouse Casino, Parx Casino and Penn National enjoyed their first full month of online casino games in August, and generated $3.4 million in gross revenue on $111.8 million in wagers. That is up from $812,306 in July revenue and $49.2 million in bets.

1. Plaza Hotel and Casino debuts new rooms and suites
The Plaza Hotel and Casino in Downtown Las Vegas celebrated the new Luxe guest rooms and suites with a few guests. City of Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn G. Goodman, former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar B. Goodman and other invited guests took part in a toast to welcome the new hotel accommodations.

“Downtown Las Vegas is booming – it’s evolving and growing,” said Jonathan Jossel, CEO of the Plaza Hotel & Casino. “We are excited for all the projects from Fremont Street to Symphony Park that will bring more people to downtown looking for memorable experiences. That’s why we created the Luxe rooms and suites, dramatically raising the standard for high-quality hotel rooms in the heart of downtown.”

The $15 million renovation saw the transformation of over 120 guest rooms on the top floors of the resort’s North Tower. The new Luxe rooms average 325 square-feet and several changes were made to make these rooms possible, including 16 rooms being combined to form eight suites.
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