It appears the first in-arena retail sports betting facility in Illinois will be located inside downtown Chicago’s United Center.
The FanDuel Sportsbook lounge will be the second facility at an NHL arena, behind Caesars Sportsbook/William Hill’s facility at Capital One Arena in Washington D.C, and the second NBA arena to have a FanDuel sportsbook on-site, behind Phoenix’s Footprint Center.
The facility’s opening is pending approval from the Illinois Gaming Board and comes just over a month after the Chicago City Council voted to repeal the Windy City’s ban on sports betting by a 19-7 margin.
The two-story FanDuel facility will feature full-service bar and food service, in addition to a state-of-the-art viewing and sports betting experience, according to a company press release.
United Center FanDuel Sportsbook a Game-Changer
Howard Pizer, who serves as the executive vice president and chief executive officer of the United Center Joint Venture, said Bulls and Blackhawks fans can expect a top-notch Illinois sports betting facility, with the United Center serving as a central point for sports fans in the downtown corridor.
“As an industry leader in sports betting with a large and loyal existing customer base, FanDuel has a proven track record of innovation and excellence making them the perfect partner in developing the sportsbook at the United Center,” Pizer said in a press release. “It is designed to give sports fans a brand new, fully immersive sportsbook lounge experience unlike any other.”
Amy Howe, who serves as FanDuel Group’s chief executive officer, called Monday’s announcement a monumental achievement for the two sides, as well as the city of Chicago.
“Chicago sports fans are some of the most loyal and passionate in the world and plans for our sportsbook lounge inside the United Center reflect their excitement,” Howe said in the press release. “Our team has a track record of delivering incredible retail locations for fans, and we can’t wait to make this sportsbook lounge the premier destination for Chicago sports fans and a place where they can fully experience the FanDuel brand.”
FanDuel and the United Center plan on opening a temporary facility in the arena’s atrium that will sport company branding in the run-up to the sportsbook’s opening, allowing Bulls and Blackhawks fans to take in their favorite team’s games from the confines of the arena.
The Chicago Cubs and DraftKings are planning to open a sportsbook at Wrigley Field sometime in 2022.