Northeast Ohio’s first racino won’t impress you. Right after visiting Thistledown final week, I’m convinced the thoroughbred track that now gives 1,100 slot machines was not created to wow everyone.
The enormous horse track’s conversion screams cheap, if not portable. That’s not a slight. It could possibly be smart business enterprise.
The success of Internet cafes has established gamblers don’t care about flash. Sloppy storefronts are very good sufficient — as long as they are filled with slot machines.
ThistleDown, in North Randall, is owned by Rock Ohio Caesars, the organization behind the fancier Horseshoe casinos in Cleveland and Cincinnati. The corporation gave Thistledown a modest makeover. The enormous brick constructing that featured concrete floors and steel columns – and each of the ambiance of Cleveland’s Amtrak station — now characteristics carpet around the concrete floors and new paint on the steel columns. The entrances are sensible: sliding glass doors, painted drywall in addition to a security guard behind a tiny stand. (Feel motel lobby).
The colour scheme is orange-ish and is complemented with murals of a Cleveland skyline along with the city’s sports teams. The racino has seven bars and restaurants, such as the Center Bar, a sports bar dropped within the middle on the floor. The eateries operate a lot more like a food court at a highway rest quit, largely empty and full of affordable furniture. (In the Mane Street Deli, I had a $6.99 chicken salad sandwich on brioche bread that left me hungry.)
None of this seriously matters. ThistleDown’s renovation is genuinely in regards to the machines — Blazing 7′s, Game of Life, Price is Proper Plinko, Jaws, Pompeii, and Wizard of Oz, to name several.
Officially, the machines are video lottery terminals, that is a fancy way of saying slot machines monitored by the Ohio Lottery Commission, which gets a cut of what’s bet. Whatever you desire to get in touch with them, the machines are the draw, not the decor. Greater than half were occupied on a recent afternoon that didn’t supply live horse racing.
The machines account to get a fantastic chunk in the $88 million invested at ThistleDown. Rock Ohio Caesars is considering moving the track and also the machines towards the Akron-Canton location. It’s first gauging the impact Thistledown has on its downtown Cleveland casino.
ThistleDown is Ohio’s second racino. Scioto Downs in Columbus opened final summer. An additional five tracks are anticipated to convert by the end of the year.
Racinos compete for patrons of Online Cafes more than upscale casinos. The crowds at ThistleDown mirror those I’ve noticed at World-wide-web cafes. In my four visits to the Horseshoe, for example, I’ve never noticed as many elderly persons on the gaming floor, as I did at Thistledown.
Racinos will benefit in the imminent death — or heavy regulation — of World-wide-web cafes. Lawmakers inside the Ohio Senate ultimately realized last week that cafes provide illegal gambling. Senators are poised to support an Ohio Residence bill that may force Online cafes out of enterprise.
For those who want to stick with horse racing, the old ThistleDown is just a lengthy flight of stairs up from the gaming floor. That’s where I found a modest and quiet bunch of men with toothpicks and electronic cigarettes in their mouths, alternating their gazes in between the race plan plus the 120 tv screens broadcasting horse races from elsewhere.
ThistleDown’s reside racing is receiving a boost from the slots cash, that will attract greater horses and bigger purses. However the upper level of the racino is not really for the folks who get pleasure from the mindless action of pushing a button and waiting for their chair to vibrate with sound. To bet on ponies, as they say, it’s important to know the distinction involving a straight and exotic wager and how you can study a race system.