Plaza debuts sports book, just in time for March Madness

Stephen Sylvanie / Special to the Sun

Seventeen state-of-the-art monitors illuminate one wall of the William Hill Race & Sports Book inside the Plaza Hotel, with dozens more mounted in seated stations, March 19, 2013.

Plaza's New William Hill Race & Sports Book

A sports bettor takes down some notes at one of the booths inside the new William Hill Race & Sports Book at the Plaza Hotel after the grand opening on Tuesday, Mar. 19, 2013. Launch slideshow »

A new William Hill Race & Sports Book opened at the Plaza casino Tuesday — just in time for the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

The completion of the downtown sports book follows on the heels of nearly two years of extensive Plaza renovations, including 1,037 remodeled hotel rooms, a revamped 80,000-square-foot casino floor and new hotel lobby.

Now the largest sports book downtown, it includes 75 TV screens, 25 tables with seating, 37 carrels and 12 digital display boards over the wagering counter.

“I’m totally confident it’s the nicest sports book downtown,” said Dan Shapiro, William Hill’s director of marketing. “We look at the Plaza as our flagship downtown.”

Former Mayor Oscar Goodman was one of the first to place a bet at the refurbished sports book.

After Goodman cut the ribbon at the grand opening ceremony, he dropped $100 on the UNLV Rebels to win the NCAA Tournament.

If he beats the 60-1 odds and wins, Goodman promised to donate the money to charity, Shapiro said.