In the United States like elsewhere in Europe, physical casinos are suffering the worst effects of the crisis. The purchasing power of consumers having declined, gaming establishments are day after day reporting financial losses. Only a few exceptional casinos have managed to resist the financial crisis: they have the main characteristic of being places where glamor and sexiness are at their height. These are the casinos founded by Larry Flynt and Hugh Hefner, present owners of Hustler and Playboy magazines.
Larry Flynt, scandalous or ingenious?« Oddly enough, the Playboy and Hustler casinos are those which have best survived the crisis on the North American Continent ».
He is one of the most recognized show business personalities but also one of the most outrageous. Having copied the model of his longtime rival Hugh Hefner, who in 1953 founded the American men's magazine Playboy, Larry Flynt is the founder of Hustler, another journal in which women are even more disrobed. In 1996, the man born in 1942, in Lakeville, was even the subject of a film, The People vs. Larry Flynt. This film represents Larry Flynt as a scandalous figure, who displays vulgarities in public. Full of audacity but which is sometimes in bad taste, Larry Flynt opened several strip clubs before founding the magazine Hustler and then converting to the production of pornographic feature films.
Larry Flynt, just like his competitor, ended up opening a very popular casino franchise in the United States. Beginning in 2000, Americans, clearly enriched as a result of the real estate boom, became accustomed to shamelessly frequenting these establishments, where Slots and Baccarat players amuse themselves at tables at which superb hostesses and scantily-clad croupiers are gathered together.
Inventor of new concepts
The concept that combines game rooms with chic and sexy ambience is well founded, because casinos cannot today content themselves only with selling Blackjack or Craps. In France, Partouche and Barrière have generalized their activities by integrating restaurants and nightclubs in close proximity to their casinos. But the fact of being able to feature skimpily-clad models obviously seems much more tempting…
Innovation is certainly one of the tools that will enable land-based casinos to pull their heads out of the water. Playboy and Hustler quickly realized that combining pretty girls with sex and eroticism gained a certain clientele, which would renew itself as fashion and the new faces multiplied. Do European casinos also have to gamble on sex to have any hope of survival? It’s very likely…