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Changing the Name of the Casino Game. Crown Casinos changes to Crown Resorts.

What’s in a name? Especially in a famous one that doubles as an international brand? That’s clearly been one of the pieces of business on the boardroom table at Crown Casinos in the past couple of months, and they’ve decided that there’s plenty in a name. And they’ve decided that it’s time to change theirs.

Not that they’re suggesting a sweeping change, mind you: Crown Casinos will become Crown Resorts. What makes that change interesting to us is the feeling that it might just be acceptance of a process that has been going on for a while: the shift in focus from purely gaming pursuits to a more rounded product that aims to tempt tourists (especially those from Asian countries) to casino resorts that offer the very latest and best in attractions and facilities.

According to Simon Rowell at Melbourne-based PR consultants Brand Intellect, ‘adding resorts adds a much greater sense of fantasy and escape and takes a little bit of the focus off what is the core part of the business, which is gaming.’

It’s all a part of the strategy that Crown has settled on over the past year or so, that of broadening their appeal and positioning themselves as a luxury holiday choice that happens to include a gaming option.

There are a couple of things to consider that add context to the Crown re-branding. First of them is a dip in the profits that the group is pulling in, a dip that has forced a tightening of executive belts over the past year.

And second is the success of the Singaporean casino resorts, which have thrived, even in a rough economic climate and in the face of tight legislation, by offering more than just great pokies and gaming tables. James Packer, who’s the power behind Crown Resorts, puts it like this:

‘in the year ahead, we will be focusing on the performance of our Australian resorts, including a continued focus on cost control. My vision for Crown sees us as a leading global luxury brand, with a clear focus on Asian tourism.’

That’s all well and good, of course, and there are more than likely economic benefits to drawing tourists from all around the Pacific to Australia’s cities when it’s time for their holidays, but we’re likely not the only pokies fans in Australia who wish Packer and Crown Resorts would occasionally make a priority of being the best casinos in the world...

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