Caesars Entertainment Selling the Rio: Will the WSOP Move Locations?
For years, the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada has bee home to the World Series of Poker. Players who participate will descend on to the grounds starting in May with many not leaving until July, taking part in hundreds of events. A recent decision by the casino’s parent company, Caesars Entertainment Corporation to sell has many wondering what will happen to the WSOP.
Caesars Entertainment Corporation have off-loaded the Rio to a company that is controlled by a principal of Imperial Companies. The price tag; $516.3 million. The sale raises eyebrows as to what will happen to the WSOP as well as the Rio property. For over a decade, the Rio has been home to the WSOP and change might not be good for the series.
The Rio knows what to do and how to provide the many WSOP events. We aren’t talking about a week-long series here. The World Series of Poker takes serious organization and the employees of the Rio get it done. If the series were to move, it might be subjected to issues due to lack of knowledge of a new venue’s employees.
However, the WSOP does not seem to be going anywhere as of yet. According to a press release, the series will take place at the Rio for the 2020 edition. Even before the sale the WSOP vice president of corporate communication, Seth Palansky, stated the series would carry on normally next year.
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The WSOP might even stay further than 2020. Caesars will maintain the operation of the Rio property for two years, paying an annual rent of $45 million. Caesars also has the ability to lease the property for a third year, if they so choose.
CEO of Caesars, Tony Rodio, stated that the retention of the WSOP and the Caesars Rewards customers are factors that make the transaction valuable for the company.
The Rio has hosted the WSOP since 2005 when the series moved to the property. Players will certainly be sad to see it go and where would Caesars choose to move the brand? A lot of consideration would be needed before such a move could take place.
A new venue would have to be able to provide the floor space for the WSOP events including side events as well as cash games that players take part in during the series. Also, to consider would be accommodations as well as dining and amenities. Players will of course expect the same level of offerings as they have enjoyed at the Rio for over a decade.
It will be interesting to see in the coming weeks or months if Caesars announces more details about the WSOP and the series future. However, it may still be a few years before any major change is made involving the series and the venue in which it is hosted.