After about seven years of intrigue and controversy, the Encore Boston Harbor in Everett finally opened with fireworks, fanfare, and Frank (Sinatra) on Sunday morning.
However, with the many thousands of people traversing the casino complex’s grounds on opening day, there were bound to be some interesting vignettes.
Here’s a look at some of the more curious things our reporters saw, heard, or found out:
People were so excited to gamble, they were waiting in the wings Sunday night for $100 blackjack hands
Work night, be darned: Around midnight Sunday into Monday, seats were filled at blackjack and baccarat tables with $100 minimums. Observers even stood behind the players, either eager to take an opening spot or simply watching the game at hand.
Even when other gambling died down, poker remained a main attraction.
23.25 hours after opening, Encore casino is pretty empty. But poker room still has more than 50 people playing cards. #EncoreBostonHarbor pic.twitter.com/grZAqrRd19— Joshua Miller (@jm_bos) June 24, 2019
But about 1/3 of the poker tables upstairs remain occupied, and a dozen or so people were in line at the cashier. The VIP Poker room, however, was empty pic.twitter.com/B23vwvNLlm— Diamond Naga Siu (@diamondnagasiu) June 24, 2019
Two people have already tried to cheat at roulette — and promptly got caught.
The casino saw a total of four arrests in its first 24 hours: “Very limited problems,” said Everett Police Chief Steven A. Mazzie. “Overall, we feel good.”
Of those arrests, one person was arrested for trespassing after they were asked to leave and then came back; another was arrested for disorderly conduct at about 2:30 a.m. Monday; and two men from New York were arrested after allegedly cheating at roulette, according to police.
Jankelli S. Volquez, 27, and Hector Hernandez, 66, were charged with cheating and conspiracy after being observed cheating at a roulette table, Massachusetts State Police spokesman David Procopio said. (Procopio couldn’t divulge any more information other than that the pair were allegedly “working in concert in an attempt to cheat.”)
One of the first people in line waited 17 hours for the opening.
Glenn Reynolds, a 65-year-old retired truck driver from Quincy, started camping out on the grounds of Encore Boston Harbor at 5 p.m. Saturday, a full 17 hours before the casino and resort’s grand opening Sunday morning.
“I can’t sit at home when that adrenaline’s going, no way can I sit there,” he said.
Wynn officials are apparently pretty superstitious.
No floor 13 or floor 4 here at the Encore Boston Harbor. 13 is an unlucky number in American culture and four is an unlucky number in many East Asian cultures. There are also no room numbers that end in 13. For example, no room 513 or 813. pic.twitter.com/f35MrgCACI— Lauren Fox (@bylaurenfox) June 23, 2019
There were already some pretty big wins right off the bat.
Diane G. Sawyer felt pretty lucky while gambling on opening night. “I just won $8,000 over here,” Sawyer, 65, said, though she lamented that $8,000 after taxes isn’t a lot. “I bring a couple of thousand dollars with me. The last time I went, I went to Foxwoods and won $68,000 there. I had my backyard done over with the money that I won — I make good use of it.”
"This is the fun part," Diane G. Sawyer said with a smile as she received her $8,000 payout. pic.twitter.com/dRQtCsufV9— Diamond Naga Siu (@diamondnagasiu) June 24, 2019
Of course Dunkin’ was among the most popular eateries — especially overnight.
Yes, even the Dunkin’ coffee shop has marble floors.
The 24-hour Dunkin' has truly been the hottest spot of the night with a line at basically all hours pic.twitter.com/oqcczCkqdW— Diamond Naga Siu (@diamondnagasiu) June 24, 2019
And then there were the “slippery little suckers” at the buffet.
Casino rookie report: I ordered a noodle dish at the Red 8 Chinese restaurant. An enormous prawn escaped my chopsticks, but where did it land? Mystery solved on the Orange Line back to Boston: Shrimp in purse. Very sophisticated.— Felice Belman (@FeliceBelman) June 23, 2019
On the list of DJs for Memoire nightclub this week: Shaquille O’Neal.
“I was really surprised that DJ Shaq was on their event list,” 28-year-old Andy Her said about the lineup at Mémoire nightclub in Encore.— Lauren Fox (@bylaurenfox) June 24, 2019
Same, Andy. But also...I think I might need to check that out? pic.twitter.com/RPuaS43982
Even exhaustion couldn’t keep some patrons away.
On the main casino floor around 2:30 a.m., Antonio Amado, 29, had fallen asleep on the cushioned chair of a video poker machine while waiting for a friend to finish playing. Security woke him up — but not before a few people took pictures of him mid-nap.
“It’s my first time in a casino, so I didn’t play,” Amado, who drove to Encore with a friend from Randolph, said. “I got something to eat and tried to go to the club, but it was all sold out. I walked around everywhere to see the place, but I’m getting tired and want to go home.”
He arrived at around 10 p.m. hoping to try the burger bar, but was too late and settled for Dunkin’ instead.
A man is asleep in an ultimate poker machine seat, while a woman records her friend holding a full Dunkin' drink and dancing in front of him— Diamond Naga Siu (@diamondnagasiu) June 24, 2019
Antonio Amado woke up + chatted with me!— Diamond Naga Siu (@diamondnagasiu) June 24, 2019
Amado came with a friend and said this is his first time in a casino. They've been here since 10 p.m., and although he thinks the casino lives up to the hype, Amado is ready to go home (he's just waiting for his friend to finish playing) pic.twitter.com/zndlmntQbD
Workers were already touching up paint on Monday morning.
Touch ups at #EncoreBostonHarbor underway pic.twitter.com/6cfser0nZ2— Joshua Miller (@jm_bos) June 24, 2019
The wares and services being hawked aren’t exactly cheap.
The most expensive items in the women’s and men’s sections of Wynn Collections are, respectively, a Pamella Roland dress selling for $7,990 and a Wash-and-Go Z Zegna suit selling for $1,695. pic.twitter.com/vnlZei4S8I— Lauren Fox (@bylaurenfox) June 24, 2019
Then they showed us the salon, spa, and fitness room. Everything top of the line — salon had kerastase and Tom ford products. Spa was very tranquil. However you can expect to pay dearly for those services. Women’s cut is $75, mani is $45. pic.twitter.com/lzBoBTsFhE— Jaclyn Reiss (@JaclynReiss) June 21, 2019
Update: Encore listed its spa prices online, and it's a doozy. Looks like a massage *starts* at $210. pic.twitter.com/36sdfEUJFY— Jaclyn Reiss (@JaclynReiss) June 24, 2019
Joshua Miller, Mark Arsenault, Deanna Pan, and Felice Belman of the Globe staff and Globe correspondents Lauren Fox and Diamond Naga Siu contributed to this report.