Encore Boston Harbor gives poker players a glimpse of new reality

Posted on: May 12, 2020 10:53 PDT

Encore Boston Harbor has outlined its health sanitation program, unveiling what the casino will look like when it reopens to the public and giving poker players an idea of what they can expect when the first post-pandemic Shuffle Up & Deal is called.

“This plan presents what we will do to keep our guests, employees and our community safe,” Matt Maddox, CEO of Wynn Resorts, said in a statement. “Each operating department has its own customized set of procedures, even further detailed than the more than 20-page summary presented here. It relies on the best available science on sanitization methods, in consultation with professional infectious disease experts from some of the best academic institutions in the country. We will continue to refine and update the plan as our experts provide us more advice.”

The new protocols begin at the door, with a 2-layer temperature check system being implemented to keep those exhibiting fevers out of the property.

“Anyone displaying a temperature over 100.4°F will be taken to a private area for a secondary temporal temperature screening,” Encore said. “Employees or guests confirmed to have a temperature over 100.4°F will not be allowed entry to the property and will be directed towards appropriate medical care.”

Once inside, table games players will notice a drastically different experience, with several chairs removed between players to help everyone keep a safe distance. Players will also be required to stay seated at all tables, with the exception of Roulette and Craps. At the craps tables, the dice will be sanitized for each new shooter.

Those staying on property will notice fewer guests on each floor with many rooms kept empty to help with social distancing.

Encore Boston Harbor has yet to announce what its poker room will look like. While poker operations will likely follow similar sanitation and social distancing procedures, cash games and tournaments won’t be offered during the first phase of reopening.