Sportsbook lounges, rage rooms and a win: Scenes from the Flyers home openerOctober 10th, 2019
The Philadelphia Flyers shut out the New Jersey Devils with a 4-0 win Wednesday night, but fans had plenty more to do than just watch the game.
The Wells Fargo Center debuted several new additions during Flyers’ home opener, part of the arena's five-year, $265 million renovation plan, including several sportsbook-style lounges and a “rage room” full of smashable goods.
Rivers Casino is betting big on lounges, opening two lounges in partnership with the Wells Fargo Center. Rush Street Gaming and its affiliates own and operate Rivers Casinos, including Fishtown's SugarHouse Casino, which will soon be rebranded with the Rivers name.
The sportsbook-style lounges are the first of their kind in an American stadium, said Richard Schwarz, president of Rush Street Interactive, which operates Rivers’ online casino platform BetRivers.com. Schwarz said the company is looking to expand to other markets and stadiums.
“We are in talks with teams around the country, including in Pittsburgh, so we think this is something that will be a trend in the rest of the country, and we are glad to be pioneering it,” Schwarz said.
Each lounge, located on the concourse level as well as the top level of the stadium, has a bar, standing areas and seating available for fans to watch games happening inside and outside of the Wells Fargo Center.
A set of massive flat screens line the back wall of the 6,500-square-foot BetRivers.com lounge, showing games across hockey and other sports alongside real-time odds for each game. Though there are no slot machines or dealers in the lounge, customers can still bet on games through Rivers’ smartphone app or website.
“I think the energy, the noise, the excitement is one of the things that drives the passion for the sport, and Rivers wants to be the brand that captures that type of player,” Schwarz said.
Fans lounged in chairs in the BetRivers.com lounge, found at the top of the arena next to the Assembly Room.
Upon entering the lounge, Mike Gatlos, a longtime Flyers fan, said he noticed it looked just like a sportsbook. He said he often bets on sports, but didn't plan to Wednesday night.
“I’m going to come back,” Gatlos said. “It’s somewhere I envision myself coming back and enjoying more games.”
Next to the lounge on the terrace level is the Assembly Room, the arena’s space for standing-room only ticket holders. The Assembly Room features a bar, food vendors, a lounge, several fireplaces and some seating.
The Flyers also opened up a rage-filled counterpart to the Assembly Room.
Nestled behind a bookcase-turned-hidden-doorway is the “Disassembly Room,” a small room dotted with smashable items for fans who need to get out their pent-up rage. Starting at $35, fans can smash bottles, televisions and more to their heart’s delight for five minutes — as long as they’re willing to wear coveralls, goggles and other protective gear.