BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Sabres fans at Saturday night’s home opener will be able to enjoy a new Vegas-style amenity right at the KeyBank Center.
The new Seneca Sports Lounge opened on the 200 Club Level Saturday morning.
Sabres President and co-owner Kim Pegula joined with the Seneca Nation president and Seneca Gaming officials to unveil the new space, as they celebrated a long-term partnership between Seneca Resorts and Casinos and Pegula Sports and Entertainment.
“It’s beautiful,” said Seneca Nation President Ricky Armstrong about the new Sports Lounge space. “I think the Seneca Nation and the Buffalo Sabres have been driving forces behind building excitement in this section of Buffalo, and the Seneca Nation is happy to partner with the Buffalo Sabres.”
The new sports lounge created by that partnership offers a large bar, 15 TVs, and a sports ticker, allowing Club Seat and suite ticket holders to interact with each other while watching the Sabres on the ice and everything else happening in the wider world of sports.
Kim Pegula called the Seneca Sports Lounge a social and educational space for fans who wants to keep track of what other teams are doing and how it affects the Sabres in the standings.
Pegula also said the new lounge paves the way for some piece of the sports betting experience inside the KeyBank Center arena down the road.
“As state law changes, we look forward to really partnering with the Senecas to see if there are ways we can grow with them as well in the future,” she said.
In-person sports betting is now legal in brick-and-mortar gaming venues in New York State.
The Senecas say they do plan to bring sports betting to their properties, but there is no timeline for that at this point.
Eventually, though, people who place sports bets at the casino (or even potentially on their phones one day) will be able to keep track of the games in the Seneca Sports Lounge.
Seneca Gaming Corporation President and CEO Holly Gagnon says the Seneca Sports Lounge is also a preview of what a sports betting space could look like in the casinos.
“What’s really fun about collaborating with Pegula Sports and Entertainment is our end game is about the guest and the experience,” she said.
The Seneca Sports Lounge will be open for business for the first Sabres home game of the season Saturday night.
The game begins at 7 p.m.