The hospitality industry, following recent changes in environmental policies, began to abandon the incandescent and fluorescent lighting that has been their mainstay since the advent of electric lighting, but they are finding that these retrofits and upgrades are brining new benefits. Advances in the LED lighting industry have opened doors for designers and maintenance personnel that were thought to be locked up securely. These doors have opened to show a bright and amazing light, LED.
Although LED lighting technology is not new, what it can now do for hotels and casinos is nothing less than breathtaking. From energy efficiency to cost savings and aesthetic improvements, LED is blazing the way to a new and beautiful path to the way we see commercial lighting. Just about anywhere that you need or want light, LEDs can be the perfect solution. Overhead, under-counter, and decorative applications are joined by other previously unthinkable applications such as parking lots, pool lighting and even exterior decorative lighting. In addition to the suitability of LEDs for these solutions, they also offer amazing cost savings and ROI at very acceptable rates.
The Argosy Casino in Kansas City, Missouri, recently remodeled its facilities to include a color changing dome in the casino. This dome’s basket weave pattern is the focal point of the casino floor and features nearly 150 unique light points connected to a programmable system that runs an intricate color changing display that continues for nearly an hour. They have also implemented LED lighting in the High Limit room where cast acrylic stars are illuminated from within and can also run extensive programs of light show displays.
In Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Hotel Albuquerque at Old Town ballroom boasts the state’s most advanced ceiling lighting system that is sure to draw plenty of events to the hotel. This system can be individually programmed for each event and can pulse with the music or change on cue. Event organizers are able to save costs on room decor and custom linens by using the lighting to control ambiance and atmosphere instead. This system is also connected to the hotel’s LAN, allowing for live program changes, perfect for live events.
Decorative applications are no longer limited to indoor use either. The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada was able to replace costly and inefficient metal halide lights on the building facade with more efficient and much more exciting programmable LED lighting. This retrofit enabled them to replace the static color filters with lights that can chase, produce multiple colors per column and even be custom programmed to suit individual events. Best of all though, is that the Hard Rock will save an estimated $41,000 per year on operating and maintenance costs over the old system.
Decorative lighting is only one way that LEDs can benefit the hotel and casino industries. The best use of LEDs in most commercial operations is cost saving applications. Building or retrofitting with LED can save literally thousands of dollars per year on operating and maintenance costs.
Harrah’s Rincon Resort and Casino in Valley Center, California, has completed a lighting retrofit that really outlines just how big those savings can be. The Resort spent over $360,000 replacing incandescent and florescent lights with various types of LED’s throughout their facilities. Everything from elevator lights to decorative lighting and under-counter, general down lighting and even outdoor signage lighting were replaced . When the cost of added air conditioning required to dissipate incandescent lighting heat is figured in, the estimated energy and maintenance cost savings is expected to reach more than $200,000 the first year and even with the typical 24/7 use of the lights, they are still expected to last more than five years before the first bulb needs to be changed.
LED’s can now be considered an option for projects that require high light saturation too. For instance the Potawatomi Bingo Casino in Milwaukee’s Menomonee Valley, has spent $918,000 installing new high power LED lights in their parking lots and decks to replace the costly and inefficient metal halides that were previously installed. Though this project sounds costly at first, it is expected to save the casino over $221,000 the first year alone and with maintenance savings of over $120,000 over the next six years, it should prove to be a very wise decision indeed.
Another place that casinos can save money with LEDs is in the slot machines. Certain tribal casinos have implemented the use of LED lighting in their slot machines that has proven to be an easy and effective way to reduce heat in the casino areas, significantly reduce maintenance downtime and expense and keep costs down while doing good things for the environment. Although it can be difficult to separate slot machine energy costs from the rest of the facility, it is estimated that switching slot machines to LED lighting can save approximately $86 per year on each machine. Imagine what that can add up to in your typical casino with hundreds on the floor. LED lighting is the wave of the future and a spectacular way to create beautiful and functional spaces that save big burdens on the bottom-line and the environment.