The Sands Bethlehem Casino Wins Approval to Install ETG Gaming Studio

The Las Vegas Sands Corporation has won approval to install live dealer electronic table games in the Sands Bethlehem casino in the suburbs of Philadelphia. The Las Vegas gaming company intends on placing a stadium style ETG arena in the casino.

The ETG stadium seating is going to be designed in the Macau gaming style, which was a key facet in the rise of the world’s number one gaming destination. Players will be able to enjoy electronic versions of table games like baccarat, blackjack, roulette, and sicbo. The games are designed to attract younger gamblers, who are more used to video game style gaming.

Replacing 100 Slots and a Bar

To make room for the stadium, Bethlehem Sands plans to move out 100 slot machines. The casino also plans to replace a juice bar which had proven to be unsuccessful. Despite moving 100 slots, the casino said the overall numbers of gaming machines and table games will remain the same.

ETG Studio Opens in February 2016

According to the Las Vegas Sands, the new arrangement is expected to launch in February 2016. Sheldon Adelson’s gaming company had to lobby hard with the Pennsylvania gaming authorities to gain approval for its ETG studio.

The ETG room should create about 50 jobs at the Sands Bethlehem, despite the loss of the bar. The electronic gaming tables require staff to deal gaming cards or spin roulette wheels, which accounts for the growth in jobs.

Four Games Offered

Each of the 150 ETG terminals are going to offer four electronic games: roulette, blackjack, sicbo, and baccarat. Game designers believe the ETGs should be popular with millennials, who are beginning to represent a significant demographic in the gaming industry.

Most millennials do not like traditional slot machine style gaming, because they see the slots as repetitive and lacking in the skill elements they crave. People who came of age after 2000 grew up playing video games and online games as an everyday thing. They expect their adult gaming opportunities to conform to their tastes and habits.

Las Vegas Idea: Slots with Skill Elements

The ETG studio is not the only attempt to attract millennials to casinos. Las Vegas legalized slot machines with skill game elements with the same demographic in mind. The skill slots are in development at present. Earlier reports suggested October 2015 might see the introduction of the first slot machines with skill elements, but little has been announced recently, so there might be delays to that program.

Mark Juliano: “Unique Environment”

The Sands Bethlehem CEO, Mark Juliano, says that the ETG gaming studio is going to provide visitors with an experience which is unique on the American east coast, while attracting a new gaming demographic the facility had not reached before.

Bethlehem Sands Is Innovative

The ETGs also might be attractive to the Asian-American community which rides to the Sands Bethlehem each week. One reason the LVS casino in Bethlehem is so profitable is its reliance on so many traditional baccarat tables. Baccarat is popular with Asian gamblers, who study flow (“chi”) in people, places, and games. Asian gamblers believe they can stand back, watch a few hands of baccarat, and gain an understanding of the energy surrounding the game.

Such beliefs made Macau and Singapore two of the three most profitable gambling cities on the planet. The Las Vegas Sands sends 50 buses a week to New York City to pick up ethnic Asian customers, who prefer to play at the Sands due to its wide selection of baccarat games. Such players also might find electronic baccarat enjoyable, though some might believe gaming machines interfere with the game’s chi.

The minimum bet on such games will be $5, in line with table games like blackjack, roulette, and craps.

About Cliff Spiller

Cliff Spiller has been an online writer for 14 years. He worked for Small World Marketing for a decade, where he covered topics like gaming, sports, movies, and how-to guides. Since 2014, he has blogged about US and international gambling news on,, and

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