With the bevy of major upgrades as part of Palace Station’s $191 modernization project, one smaller addition might be easy to overlook.
The Station Casinos property rolled out 32 new gaming tables that include smartphone charging stations equipped with six outlets — one for each spot at the blackjack table.
Staying connected via smartphones is almost a necessity these days, so having charging options could allow gamblers to play longer, as they won’t have to leave to charge their devices.
Because of the configurations of roulette and craps tables, those games do not have the charging ports.
Rules regarding the use of portable electronic devices at table games vary, depending on the property and game. In the past, phones have been widely banned at the tables, and gamblers were asked to step away to use them.
“There is no policy, regulation or rule about phone use outside of the dealer’s discretion as to how it’s impacting the overall playing experience for all the guests and the dealer at their respective table,” said Lori Nelson, vice president of corporate communication with Station Casinos. “We want to ensure all of our guests have a great and enjoyable experience.”
Karl Bennison, the Gaming Control Board enforcement division chief, said the only regulation pertaining to phones is NRS 465.075, which prohibits the use or possession of a device, software or hardware to obtain an advantage at playing a game.
“If you have a phone, you’re not in violation,” Bennison said. “They (the casinos) have to figure it out and apply a policy that makes sense. People are going to have their phones on them; it’s what you’re doing with the phone that’s the issue.”
Bennison said it’s up to each property to police device use at table games.
Palace Station is the second Station Casinos property to add gaming table charger ports. The casino group's latest acquisition, the Palms, added 17 new gaming tables featuring charging ports during their in-progress remodel. Once complete, the Palms will feature charging ports at 40 table games.
Station Casinos officials say they have been a hit with players.
“The addition of the USB ports on our new table games at both Palace Station and the Palms have been met with great appreciation and enthusiasm by our guests,” Nelson said. “We’re always looking to bring convenient and important amenities to our guests, and we’re pleased they are enjoying this latest amenity.”
As part of the Palace Station renovation, the casino has already updated its exterior, improved parking and added a new bingo room and gaming pit.
By the time the project is completed in late 2018, there also will be a new first-floor buffet, two new restaurants, two new bars, a nine-screen boutique cinema, a new pool and 300 more parking spaces. In addition, the casino floor is being completely renovated, including the poker room, and will feature more slot machines.