Mobile apps might drive the future of sports gambling in the United States, but casinos are still betting big on physical sportsbooks as legal wagering expands to new places.

Lounges, bars and other shiny new spaces are giving casinos and other operators a new way to attract patrons for things besides betting on sports. It’s a strategy long used in Las Vegas, where sports betting is dwarfed by betting on slot machines and table games. But it’s new for places like Atlantic City or Biloxi, Mississippi, which until recently primarily relied on restaurants, shows and other offerings to keep casinos as fresh draws.

In New Jersey, where mobile wagering accounts for about 80% of sports betting, physical sportsbooks are required by law.

In this May 1, 2019 photo, construction continues on the new retail sportsbook at Bally's casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
In this May 1, 2019 photo, construction continues on the new retail sportsbook at Bally’s casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

But rather than treat them as a burdensome cost, Atlantic City casinos are investing millions into turning expanded betting facilities into draws for gamblers that want to bet and watch games with friends.

___

In this March 22, 2019 photo, customers watch a game during the NCAA March Madness college basketball tournament at the Hard Rock casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
In this March 22, 2019 photo, customers watch a game during the NCAA March Madness college basketball tournament at the Hard Rock casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
In this May 1, 2019 photo, Lou DeFeo, regional director of construction for Caesars Entertainment, discusses the new retail sportsbook under construction at Bally's casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
In this May 1, 2019 photo, Lou DeFeo, regional director of construction for Caesars Entertainment, discusses the new retail sportsbook under construction at Bally’s casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
In this May 1, 2019 photo, Phil Mazzone, regional vice president for Caesars Entertainment, discusses the new retail sportsbook under construction at Bally's casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
In this May 1, 2019 photo, Phil Mazzone, regional vice president for Caesars Entertainment, discusses the new retail sportsbook under construction at Bally’s casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
In this May 1, 2019 photo, Lou DeFeo, regional director of construction for Caesars Entertainment, discusses the new retail sportsbook under construction at Bally's casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)
In this May 1, 2019 photo, Lou DeFeo, regional director of construction for Caesars Entertainment, discusses the new retail sportsbook under construction at Bally’s casino in Atlantic City N.J. Casinos in eight states are opening or expanding retail sportsbooks to capture in-person sports betting business, even while most of the growth in the new industry is forecast to be online. (AP Photo/Wayne Parry)

View more:

Sign up to receive our latest news!

By submitting this form, I agree to the terms.