Hard Rock International has announced plans to open a brick-and-mortar casino in London, the United Kingdom.
Last week, the hotel, resort, restaurant, and cafe conglomerate revealed that it had acquired the premises license from London’s famous and glamorous The Ritz Club which Hard Rock says will allow it to establish a new venue in the city.
The famous Ritz casino, which opened back in 1978, closed in May 2020, two months after England’s Covid-19 lockdown forced it to close temporarily. Reports suggest that all staff at the casino were made redundant.
Speaking about the launch of the new casino, Hard Rock International Chairman Jim Allen told FocusGN: “We look forward to expanding our brand offerings within London and bringing our award-winning hospitality, gaming and entertainment to the birthplace of Hard Rock.”
No further details were shared about Hard Rock International’s plans for its upcoming casino, but the venue will join the brand’s three cafés in the city and the organisation’s Hard Rock Hotel near Oxford Circus.
As Hard Rock International plans on launching its brick-and-mortar casino in England’s capital, other casino and betting groups have reported losses. William Hill released a trading update last week, reporting a 16% drop in group net revenue as a result of the Covid-19 closures across the UK.
Meanwhile, Buzz Bingo closed 26 UK venues permanently last year, and other casino brands have also reported permanent closures too, and it’s thought that more may come.
Rootz Launches New Online Casino
As Hard Rock International announces plans to open a brick-and-mortar casino, Malta-based casino operator Rootz has announced the launch of a brand new online casino website; Wheelz Casino.
The new website is Rootz’s third gaming brand following Wildz and Caxino, which launched last year. In its announcement statement, Rootz claims that Wheelz Casino will offer “uncharted levels of player customisation”.
The company adds: “Wheelz is built on Rootz’s own powerful gaming platform that allows for seamless navigation and the provision of real-time awards, wrapped in a colourful and engaging interface.
“In-house smart systems comprise an essential component in Rootz’s toolkit, with their influence felt across all key areas of the business, such as AML and rewards. Payment times at Wheelz are also some of the fastest in the industry, supported by robust processes developed over time.”
In addition, Rootz lauds that Wheelz Casino will have some of the fastest payment times within the industry and will feature live casino games, hundreds of video slots, and traditional tables games too.
As reported by Casino Beats, Rootz has partnered with Baywatch and Night Rider actor David Hasselhoff who will feature in television advertisements for the website. In addition, the actor, who reportedly feels “at home” int he casino environment, will reportedly have his own dedicated bonus feature on the casino site.
Describing Rootz’s promotional partnership with Hasselhoff as “a major coup”, Rootz says it’s managed to acquire “the biggest global star ever to represent an MGA-accredited online casino.”
At the time of writing, Rootz Limited’s online brands are not available in the United Kingdom and do not hold a valid license from the UK Gambling Commission. It’s unclear if the websites will ever launch in the UK.
New Game Partnerships
Continuing the online casino news, the last week has seen several announcements of casino and game partnerships.
Today (January 18), game developer Gaming Realms, a development studio which focuses on providing mobile-friendly slingo games, announced a content partnership with leading online casino Videoslots.
Under the new agreement, all of Gaming Realms’ slingo titles have been made available on the Videoslots casino website via Gaming Realms’ aggregation partner Relax Gaming. The agreement covers games Slingo Fluffy Favourites, Slingo Lucky Streak, Slingo Ante Up, and many others.
William Ahlberg, the Head of Commercials at Videoslots, told EuropeanGaming: “Securing Gaming Realms’ renowned slingo genre is a major boost for our site and offers players a wealth of fresh and exciting content.
“The slingo grid mechanic is a proven hit, and our customers will relish the chance to enjoy a growing portfolio that incorporates new, original titles as well as a host of instantly recognisable brand originals.”
Mark Segal, the CFO at Gaming Realms, added: “We are delighted to have teamed up with Videoslots in order to further expand the reach of our content within a games catalogue that is unrivalled in the industry. We have reached an exciting point in Slingo’s journey, and we are sure that Videoslots players will enjoy our range of engaging, innovative and entertaining games.”
Meanwhile, slot aggregator Relax Gaming has announced a new partnership with Italian game developer Gamshy. Under the partnership, all of Gamshy’s games including popular slots Toon Cops and Tubularium will be available via Relax Gaming and to the aggregator’s partnered casino brands.
Giorgio Mikas, the Sales Manager at Gamshy, told CasinoBeats: “This deal is a great move for us both. We’re always looking to expand the reach of our games and Relax helps us do just that and more.
“Their flexibility, speed and openness to collaboration are what attracted our attention and are the qualities that will no doubt see both our businesses gain from this partnership.”
Shelley Hannah, the Director of Casino Products at Relax Gaming, added: “Getting Gamshy on-board with their boundary-pushing games adds another string to our bow and offers our customers yet more diversity in content.
“We’re really pleased to bring them onto our platform and provide a distributional reach which will not only raise their profile among top tier operators, but also help drive their business goals.”