Melco’s Studio City in Macau approved for smoking lounges


Studio City, a Macau resort operated by Melco Resorts, has become only the second casino resort authorized to provide smoking lounges in the city. The other casino property is Ponte 16, which received its approval in April.

Melco's Studio City in Macau approved for smoking loungesThe city’s Health Bureau revealed last Tuesday that it was approving the Melco request. All casinos that want to continue to offer on-site smoking must apply with the bureau. The smoking lounges have stricter requirements than before, and must be equipped with air extraction devices that are more effective than what is currently permitted under current regulations. After January 1, 2019, only those casinos who have received authorization will be allowed to offer smoking lounges.

According to several investment analysts, casino markets where on-site smoking has been 100% prohibited have seen a reduction in gross gaming revenue (GGR). However, the analysts emphasized that the reduction was only a temporary one, and that the GGR quickly began to climb after a brief lull.

Out of the 47 casinos and slot parlors in Macau, 13 have already applied for authorization to operate the updated smoking lounges, according to a report by the Health Bureau this week. Earlier in August, only 11 had applied. The 13 venues were not identified by name, but the bureau indicated that they had filed a total of 107 requests—39 more than what had been submitted until the end of July.

Venues have until September 28 to submit their requests if they’re to be approved before the city’s new smoking regime goes into effect next January. The Health Bureau said that the September 28 deadline was necessary to allow time for inspections of the smoking lounges.

Smoking on casino mass floors was banned by the Macau government in October 2014; however, an exception for smoking lounges that didn’t offer gaming activity was made. Any smoking lounges still operating after January 2019, if they don’t comply with the new regulations, can result in the operator receiving a fine of up to $24,747. For the first six months of 2018, 436 smoking-related site inspections were conducted by the health Bureau, compared to 312 during the same period last year.

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One Size Doesn’t Fit All



By Carley Campbell, 17, Staff Writer


August 30, 2018

It’s that time of year again. Back to school, back to the mall for clothes shopping. For me, trying on clothes can generate feelings of awkwardness and self-loathing. If it looks a little tight on the rack, forget about it. Too big on the rack? Too much for me.

Like most people, my size changes depending on the store I go to. A medium in one store is a large in another. Clothes shopping can be like Goldilocks and the Three Bears. It’s a challenge to find something just right. Especially right when school starts. There’s so much focus on wardrobe. Dress codes, new trends and of course, gym class. It’s enough to make you wish for summer vacation again!

I know I’m not the only teenager who can feel this way. You too might feel like you’re too short, too thin, too tall, too big if you can’t fit into that new outfit you picked out. Fear not. If the outfit doesn’t work out, you’re still a good person. Sure you might not feel comfortable with one specific outfit, but if you keep looking, you’ll likely find something that flatters you. There are plenty of options to choose from out there!

But if you’re someone who isn’t swayed by my saying, “You’re not too tall, thin, short, big” or “You’re more than just your appearance,” then maybe it’s time to focus on something other than what you look like. You have other talents that make you unique. You can do so much more than you think! Finding and focusing on what you’re good at can make you feel so much better than worrying about your clothes. You are more than a trendy outfit. You have talents and traits that an outfit can’t quite define. You are yourself. And that’s all that matters.



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Teen Consent—Degrassi Gets It Right



By Sara Kleine, 17, Contributor


August 28, 2018

After an exhausting junior year, summer has been the perfect time for me to kick back and explore a variety of shows on Netflix. One night, I came upon Degrassi: Next Class, a Canadian show that features a large, diverse cast of teen characters dealing with issues involving relationships, identity, drug use and more. When I started watching, I was expecting just another fun, fluffy high school show. I quickly realized this was not the case. Each episode is packed with realistic teen experiences. One particularly memorable episode, “#yesmeansyes,” shows two characters navigating the dynamics of their relationship and learning about consent.

Many TV shows include sexual situations but don’t address consent. Degrassi openly discusses it. In the episode, Zig and Maya, a couple, are studying together when Zig tries to make out with Maya. She pushes him off, leaving him feeling rejected and confused. Maya wonders if Zig respects her boundaries.

Later, Zig’s friend Grace explains that even though Maya is his girlfriend, he still needs her consent. This encourages him to talk with Maya about wanting to have sex, and he assures her he’ll ask for consent every step of the way. This conversation is groundbreaking for teen TV! After all, how many times have you seen teen characters openly discussing their sexual needs with one another?

The next time Zig and Maya are hanging out, he asks if he can kiss her neck, take off her shirt and more. When he asks her if she wants to have sex, she replies, “Yes!” This seemed a little excessive to me at first, but then I realized it sends the message that consent cannot simply be given once during a sexual encounter—rather, it’s important to make sure your partner is OK with everything you do.

This scene sets Degrassi apart from other teen shows because it discusses and displays explicit, enthusiastic consent. Many sexual encounters in teen shows occur without any spoken communication between partners. These TV portrayals of sex led me to believe that it’s always possible to rely on body language to know our partners’ wants and needs. A lot of shows also portray girls as passive participants in sexual situations; this has sometimes made me feel that it’s not O.K. for girls to be just as excited as boys about sex.

Zig and Maya’s actions show the concept that healthy consent is ongoing: consent for one action doesn’t equal consent for another. It is also enthusiastic: both partners show clear, active interest. They have sex because they’re sure they both want to.



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Genting HK first-half losses down 30% year on year


Casino cruise ship operator Genting Hong Kong Group posted a $141.3-million loss for the first half of 2018, 30% lower than last year’s loss for the same period.

In its press release, the company noted that net cruise revenue from January to June 2018 had increased by 41% to $514 million, compared to $364 million during the same period in 2017, partly “due to the inclusion of World Dream and four Crystal River Cruises vessels in 1H2018.”

Genting HK first-half losses down 30% year on yearRevenue for the first half was at $777.6 million, 46% more than last year’s revenue for the same period. Earnings before interest, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) for cruise-related activities, excluding startup costs for new ships, was at $63 million, whereas the company reported a first-half loss of $18.3 million in 2017.

Genting HK said that the improvement in cruise-adjusted EBITDA had been offset by lower production in shipyards, making for lower cost capitalization for shipbuilding. However, because of expected increases in the use of the shipyards, the company sees an increase in cost capitalization for shipbuilding for the second half of the year.

The company directors also declared a dividend per ordinary share of $0.01 for the first half, to be payable by September 27.

Among Genting HK’s land-based operations is Resorts World Manila, which is expanding in the months to come. “Completion of the Sheraton Manila Hotel and Hilton Manila is targeted for the second half, while Hotel Okura Manila will open in the first half of 2019, effectively making RWM a six-hotel integrated resort,” the company said.

Last June, Genting HK decided to sell its 1.4% stake in Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings. According to the terms of the sale, the company will be selling the 3.15 million shares it holds, for at least $43.86 per share, over a period of 12 months. The sale is intended to finance general working capital and capital expenditures, as well as possible new investments.

Genting HK’s parent company Genting Berhad is one of several companies hoping to procure a gaming license in Japan, after the recent approval of the country’s Integrated Resorts Implementation Bill.

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WATCH: Hollywood mogul falls ill, close to death in less than 24 hours: Part 1


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    PlaySugarHouse.com is the first gaming operator in the US to launch an integrated Online Sportsbook and Casino


    New Jersey’s PlaySugarHouse.com Sportsbook & Casino Will Offer Over 5 million Live In-Game Bet Options A Year Through Its Mobile Apps

    CHERRY HILL, NJ-August 23, 2018 – New Jersey’s online casino innovator, PlaySugarHouse.com is doubling down by introducing its world-class sportsbook to the Garden State’s PLAYSUGARHOUSE.COM IS THE FIRST GAMING OPERATOR IN THE US TO LAUNCH AN INTEGRATED ONLINE SPORTSBOOK AND CASINO residents and visitors. Operated by Rush Street Interactive (RSI), the new SugarHouse Online Sportsbook & Casino features a wide variety of bets, competitive odds and a ground-breaking loyalty program that seamlessly merges casino games with sports betting. Players will earn loyalty and bonus points on every single sports and casino wager, including the more than 5 million Live In-Game bet options and 450 casino games and live dealer table games. Additionally, unified player accounts, wallet and bonusing allow players to easily switch between sports betting and casino play.

    RSI and PlaySugarHouse.com are committed to offering players in New Jersey the most bang for their buck, with millions of Live In-Game bet offers. Great odds and advanced technology enables those In-Game bets at PlaySugarHouse.com to remain open longer and maximize betting opportunities during the game. Players have the opportunity to make a wide range of bets including who will win the game, upcoming plays, over/under for teams and players, partial game bet, parlays, and much more. An innovative feature allows players to cash-out an active bet before the outcome is determined, allowing them to secure part of their winnings or cut their losses as the odds change.

    As one of the first to launch online sports betting in New Jersey, Rush Street Interactive already has a wealth of experience and knowledge in operating a regulated online and mobile Sportsbook in Colombia. “Being the first US-based gaming operator to launch a regulated online sportsbook outside of the US has been helpful in establishing the SugarHouse Online Sportsbook & Casino,” said Richard Schwartz, President of Rush Street Interactive. “We’ve matured our sportsbook product and validated that players value our proprietary sportsbook loyalty program, including earning points on every single bet.”

    In an effort to provide players with the best possible experience, SugarHouse Online Sportsbook is user-friendly and makes the sports betting process easy to understand for those looking to get in on the action. For example, PlaySugarHouse.com will offer 3 ways of displaying odds: 1) American odds for those familiar with Vegas-style betting, 2) fractional odds for those familiar with horse race betting and 3) decimal odds that are easy to understand for new players to sports betting. Decimal odds are simply what you multiply your stake with in order to calculate payout (i.e. bet $100 at odd 3.50 and your payout is $350).

    The iOS (downloadable in the apple store) and Android (downloadable from PlaySugarHouse.com) mobile apps are also easy to use and have all of the same advanced functions and features as the desktop platform, allowing players to get in on the action while on the go.

    Take a tour of the site here: PlaySugarHouse.com

    About Rush Street Interactive

    Rush Street Interactive, an affiliate of Rush Street Gaming, was founded by pioneers in the internet gaming industry with decades of collective experience in developing and operating regulated online gaming sites. Rush Street Interactive owns, develops, and operates an in-house proprietary iGaming platform that has enabled the company’s playsugarhouse.com brand to rapidly become one of the leaders in the online casino market in New Jersey. In addition to deployments in legal and regulated iGaming markets, the Rush Street Interactive iGaming platform also powers a growing number of social casino4fun websites, including those belonging to several of the Rush Street Gaming’s affiliated land-based casino brands. Rush Street Gaming is one of the fastest-growing gaming companies in North Americas and has developed and operates Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh, SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia, Rivers Casino in Des Plaines, Illinois and Rivers Casino and Resort in Schenectady, New York. For more information, visit: www.rushstreetgaming.com. SugarHouse Online Casino website: www.playsugarhouse.com.

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    New deal agreed between SoftGamings and EGT Interactive


    22 AUGUST 2018, VALETTA/MALTA, RIGA/LATVIA: Today SoftGamings and EGT Interactive announced partnership, which includes providing the EGT Interactive gaming content on the SoftGamings platform.

    SoftGamings is a platform developer, gaming aggregator and i-gaming services provider with over 10 years of experience in the industry. The company’s game providers’ suite is regularly enriched with recognised titles, such as EGT this August.

    New deal agreed between SoftGamings and EGT InteractiveEGT Interactive brings the 15 years of experience of the EGT’s land-based casino slots to the world of online casino games. More than 150 games are known worldwide in more than 85 countries.

    EGT Interactive offers several kinds of game types – slots, table games, card games, Keno and jackpot games. They are available in both desktop and mobile.

    The most popularity seem to be enjoyed by EGT classic slots, such as 40 Super Hot, Burning Hot and Extra Stars. All titles feature traditional design with fruit symbols, as it was in the beginning of the slot machine era. There is no ‘Spin’ or similar button – instead of it a player has to press the button with an exact amount of bet, which can be chosen each time new.

    Apart from slots, EGT Interactive offers 2 kinds of table games – European Roulette and Lucky Circle, Card games – Four of a Kind Bonus Poker, Joker Poker and Jacks and Better Poker, and also Keno Universe.

    The EGT Interactive jackpot is a multilevel system, where every level is marked with a different card suit. The jackpot cards bonus is randomly triggered after a single game is finished.

    The EGT Interactive gaming content is already available for integration from the SoftGamings feature-rich platform. Casino operators can add this software to their casino environments via single unified API.

    Irina Sazonova, Director of Partnerships at SoftGamings says: ‘I am happy about our new cooperation with the EGT Interactive. It is a recognised provider, which produces a really quality content, which perfectly suits our Slots Bundle and Casino Games Integration offerings.’

    As an aggregator, SoftGamings offers several ways of acquiring games – Slots Bundle, Live Casino Bundle and Casino Games Integration. EGT Interactive content is available as a part of Slots Bundle – a package of the best slot providers in the i-gaming industry. It can also be integrated separately or pick up several more providers at operator’s wish.

    About EGT Interactive

    EGT Interactive is a Bulgaria-based gaming provider that brings the 15 years of experience of the EGT’s land-based casino slots to the world of online casino games. The company is growing rapidly through constant innovation, consumer-centric approach and top-notch support. Every single aspect of the company’s products is designed in line with the customer needs. The EGT games are based on an attractive Return-to-Player (RTP) strategy, which has proven to increase the player lifetime value.

    About SoftGamings

    SoftGamings is a B2B casino platforms provider and gaming systems aggregator. With over 10 years of experience in the industry, SoftGamings provides solutions demanded in the market and develops its own creative solutions – White Label, Turnkey, Self-Service, Bitcoin platform solutions, Bonus System Standalone feature, Sportsbook solution, Slots Bundle, Live Bundle and Casino Games Integration. SoftGamings’ strong IT team can also provide gamification possibilities, which is one of the major industry trends. Products portfolio includes 40+ gaming suppliers with 3000+ games. The company offers live dealer solutions from Evolution Gaming, NetEnt, Ezugi, Authentic Gaming, Lucky Streak etc, slots from NetEnt, Microgaming, BetSoft, Endorphina, Habanero, Booming Games, WorldMatch etc, sportsbook, hosting, licensing and banking services. Over 100 clients use SoftGamings products and services since 2007.

    For more information:

    Website: http://www.softgamings.com
    Email: info@softgamings.com
    Skype: info@softgamings.com

    Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn.

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    WATCH: Health groups push for stricter FDA regulations on e-cigarette liquids


    Transcript for Health groups push for stricter FDA regulations on e-cigarette liquids

    We turn to our “Gma” cover story this morning, new concerns about those teens using e-cigarettes. So many of them are using them, millions of them in fact. Health groups are asking why is the fda not doing more, could they be doing more, scared they could hit epidemic levels. Diane Macedo tracking this for us. Good morning. Good morning. It used to be relatively easy to bust kids for smoking but new vaping devices are making it harder and harder, producing little smell, less vapor. They don’t even look like a cigarette and in some cases students are able to vape in the middle of class. Several health groups say the fda isn’t doing enough and isn’t moving fast enough. Reporter: It’s the popular cigarette that doesn’t look like a cigarette at all. Remove its cap and insert it into your Jewell. Each cartridge carries as much nicotine as an entire pack of cigarettes. Now the CDC says 2 million high school students are using products like Jewell for a quick rush. This month six organizations banded together sending this letter to the fda claiming manufacturers of e-cigarette products have produced new products at an alarming pace in total defines of law with no apparent concern for fda enforcement, including a host of new products introduced subsequent to the explosive growth in youth use of Jewell. We know that more and more products are hitting the market that are target is teens and kids. Reporter: Including banning flavored e-cigarette liquids which may appeal to teens and in mid September they’ll launch a vaping prevention campaign targeting youths who vape or are open to trying it. The fda says online they’re working hard to use their available tools to protect Americans from the harms of being addicted to tobacco products. According to one study published in the American journal of medicine, young adults who use e-cigarettes are more than four times as likely to start smoking tobacco cigarettes within 18 months compared to peers who don’t vape. It’s the flavoring, it’s the sleek appearance of some of these products that we’re really concerned about and we know that kids and teens who are using those products are more likely to use regular tobacco products in the future. Reporter: Jewell tells ABC news that their product is intended for current adult smokers only. We stand committed to working with those who want to keep Jewell out of the hands of young people. But high school freshman margarita told ABC news in June that flavoring enticed her to use Jewell. I just thought it was okay. Reporter: Jewell says the product’s appearance is meant to help people quit. While they have fewer toxins than cigarettes, vaping can still expose people to cancer-causing chemicals and contain nicotine which can get both kids andaddictive. Thank you so much, Diane. We’re going to go to our get

    This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.



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    Phil Siddell emerges victorous at Sydney Championships Pot-Limit Omaha


    Congratulations are in order for Phil Siddell, winner of the Sydney Championship AU$550 Pot-Limit Omaha (PLO) tournament held at the Star Poker Room. While he’s no stranger to the tables and has had some success, it was his first major tournament win and gave him a nice payday of $14,484.

    Phil Siddell emerges victorious at the Sydney Championships Pot-Limit Omaha tournament140 players descended on the Star Poker Room for the event and the tournament was full of some pretty amazing bets. A number of players decided to play the bingo variation, going all-in early and hoping to score a win by the time the river card was flipped over.

    Sydney poker pro Michael Mayer would burst the bubble, eliminated in tenth place – just out of reach of the money. With him out of the way, it was truly anyone’s game and his absence meant that the title would most likely not be awarded to a Sydney player, as have most during this year’s Sydney Championship series.

    Daniel Noja would be the first to pick up a little money at the final table. He was sent out in ninth place with $1,308, followed by Yu Chen, who took down the Sydney Championship mixed game event. She picked up $1,638 for her eighth-place finish.

    Josh McCully, who won the Sydney Championship Main Event Warm Up game last year, was sent to the rail in sixth place with $2,697. He was followed by Andy Miller, who had four previous final table appearances over the past year. Miller pocketed $3,548 for his performance.

    Now down to four players, Tae Woo Park and Htet Zin would follow Miller to the crowds, taking $4,747 and $6,460, respectively. Park has been a regular grinder for the past four years, while Zin has been seen for about the past three. Zin’s most recently took first at the AU$150 PLO tournament in the Perth Poker Champs in March.

    Siddell was left to battle it out with Melbourne player Adrian Rarung. Rarung, who has never reached the money in an event according to Hendon Mob, wasn’t able to hold up against Siddell’s experience and would have to settle for a second-place finish and $8,950.

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    Macau eSports founder denies he led crypto mining scam


    Reports began circulating about a week ago that a Macau-based eSports operated was involved in a cryptocurrency scam that has taken 70 locals on a $2.5-million ride. The company, Grow uP eSports, was accused of facilitating meetings between the investors and a cryptocurrency mining equipment manufacturer, Genesis Hong Kong, Ltd., which ultimately has not abided by the investment agreements and has not reimbursed investors as promised. Now, Grow uP’s founder, Frederico Alexandre dos Santos Rosario, has spoken out, denying any involvement in the scam.

    Macau eSports founder denies he led crypto mining scamAccording to Inside Asian Gaming, Rosario penned a letter to the media outlet this past Tuesday in response to what he calls “baseless and calumnious allegations” related to the scam. He said that he has been the victim of a number of defamatory comments and accusations thrown at him by the Hong Kong eSports community and Genesis’ majority shareholder Dennis Lau, and intends on filing a defamation lawsuit against Lau.

    Rosario’s mother, Rita Botelho Dos Santos, has already filed complaints against Genesis and its partner, Forger Tech, as well as against Lau and Hong Kit Lau, another majority shareholder in Genesis. Those complaints come after Genesis and Forger held seminars hosted by Grow uP in Macau last January that, as has come to light, were apparently nothing more than an opportunity to perpetrate fraud.

    142 participation agreements were signed by 70 residents in Macau to invest in the purchase of crypto mining equipment. According to the agreement, “significant returns” would be paid out, but to date only around $815,000 of the more than $20 million has been returned. Out of a total of seven funding rounds held, only the first three have seen capital returned to the investors.

    Lau has accused Rosario of the fraud, which the latter vehemently denies. He said in his statement, “Dennis Lau is currently under investigation by criminal authorities in Hong Kong and Macau for the suspected defrauding of Forger Tech clients.” He added that he wanted to “clarify the misinformation that Mr [sic] Dennis Lau has attempted to spread against me in an obvious attempt to shift attention from the serious accusations which have been brought against him and which are currently under investigation by the proper authorities.”

    Rosario has indicated that he has proof of his innocence, adding, “In the meantime, I will continue to actively cooperate with the ongoing criminal investigation against Mr [sic] Dennis Lau and Forger Tech in Hong Kong and Macau and have full confidence that the truth about this matter will come to light through the proper authorities.

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