Autonomous Security Robots Deployed At Ameristar Black Hawk

Written By Hill Kerby on 10/06/2023
Image of new security robots that will be deployed at Ameristar casino in Black Hawk.

The future is here. At one Colorado casino in particular.

PENN Entertainment is upping its security measures and deploying the new Knightscope K5 Autonomous Security Robots at its 43 gaming and racing properties in the US, including Colorado’s Ameristar Black Hawk Casino Hotel.

The rollout comes after the retail and online casino giant had a successful trial run with the security robots at its Las Vegas property, M Resort Spa Casino.

Robots will greet guest while monitoring property

Gambling is thriving in the state, including online gambling. While online casinos in Colorado are still not legal (at least not real-money ones), online sports betting has far exceeded initial expectations. Optimism is high that online casinos will be added to Colorado’s gambling menu soon.

But that doesn’t mean retail gambling spaces, like Ameristar Black Hawk, aren’t working to innovate and improve.

Knightscope is a leading developer of autonomous security robots (ASRs) and blue light emergency communication systems.

Casino guests will find ASRs throughout Ameristar Black Hawk, starting right when they enter. Robots will warmly greet guests and record audio and video footage on everyone who comes onto the gaming floor, while security guards will remain nearby to provide additional assistance.

PENN’s goal is to provide enhanced security and bolster its already proficient security team. It’s not trying to replace its force with robots but rather to enable them to do their job more thoroughly and efficiently. 

Knightscope Chairman and CEO William Santana Li praised PENN, citing its commitment to safety and guests’ experiences at its properties.

“We are overjoyed that we will be providing Knightscope technologies across its portfolio to protect the surge of guests arriving and departing from all of its properties daily.”

Knightscope’s ASRs provide a two-way communication system that helps create a safer environment for visitors and security personnel. They can roam anywhere you would otherwise find a security guard.

Li explained the purpose of the machines to Yahoo News in March.

“(They) are intended to not only deter negative behavior just physically being there, you can stop a lot of nonsense from happening – but to give officers and guards really smart eyes, ears and their voice on the ground in multiple locations at the same time.”

Robots in three PENN casinos and counting

Two more PENN properties, Ameristar Casino Hotel Council Bluffs in Iowa and Hollywood Casino Aurora in Illinois, were the first to receive ASRs after the Las Vegas experiment.

Knightscope’s next two contracts are in Shreveport and Bossier City, La. PENN has two properties in Bossier City – Boomtown and Margaritaville resorts – but it has none across the river in neighboring Shreveport.

PENN has not announced which properties will come next or a deadline for its complete deployment. However, you should not be surprised when you see ASRs in action the next time you visit Ameristar Black Hawk.

Some specifications of the K5 ASR include:

  • Around 5 feet tall
  • Weigh around 400 pounds
  • Can run 24/7 and self-recharge
  • Use 360-degree, eye-level video recording and streaming

ASRs are becoming a common part of security efforts in numerous environments, such as parks, hospitals, universities, retail stores, etc.

Given the importance of security in the casino industry, it was only a matter of time before robots became a part of the conversation.

Ameristar offers promotions galore in October

Ameristar Black Hawk boasts a 57,000-square-foot casino with 1,250 slot and video poker machines, 40 table games, a poker room and a 536-room hotel with the best views in town. It also has plenty of promotions for its PENN Play rewards members in October.

  • Mondays: PENN Heroes members get a free slot play offer at any promotional kiosk
  • Tuesdays: Members aged 50+ can activate a 2x multiplier option at any promotional desk
  • Thursdays: Earn 100 tier points on your PENN Play card and receive a $25 dining credit

Members can win up to $5,000 in slot play on Sundays through the rest of 2023 by playing a PENN Play kiosk game. Players must earn 150 points for the day to become eligible.

Other promotional dates:

  • Saturday, Oct. 7: Earn 100 tier points and receive $25 in slot play. Higher tier members can redeem $100, $200 or $300 in $25 increments.
  • Saturday, Oct. 14: Jackpot winners between July 1 and Sept. 30 receive an entry into a $25,000 drawing.
  • Oct. 19-22: The Accelerate To 8! promotion rewards members with PENN Cash multipliers during this four-day promotion. Players earn a 2x multiplier on their first day of participation and can receive an 8x multiplier on the final day if they play every day.
  • Tuesday, Oct. 31: Players aged 50-plus qualify for a drawing to win their share of $15,000 in slot play. Drawings take place every 20 minutes from 5 to 7 p.m., and every 50 additional tier points earn players an extra entry. 
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Hill Kerby

Hill Kerby is a proponent of safe, legal betting, and is grateful to be able to contribute to growing the industry. He has a background in poker, sports, and psychology, all of which he incorporates into his writing.

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