The Super Bowl is the biggest event on the calendar for the ad industry, as companies compete to get a slot on one of the year's most watched events. This year was no exception, and proved to be a year of firsts. For one, casinos got a look in on the action, as ads aired for Las Vegas and the newly opened Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood. 

Viewers who tuned in to watch the big game will have seen Shakira and JLo's show-stopping half-time set. But did you spot which hottest celebs starred in casino ads while the Big Game was on? If these star-studded commercials aren't enough to entice you to some of America's glitziest casinos, you can always play at online casino sites like the ones listed here.

'What happens here, only happens here'

Las Vegas debuted its first Super Bowl ad, after many bitter years of battling for screen-time. The NFL normally takes a hard stance against any ads featuring gambling or hard liquor. However, Vegas finally succeeded this year, airing an ad before the game. 30 seconds was all it took, as the all-star commercial promoted all the entertainment and shows the city has to offer. 

Some eagle-eyed viewers may find this ad familiar. In fact, the Vegas ad is actually a shorter version of a 60 second ad aired after Aerosmith played at the Grammy's. The commercial highlighted the glitz and glamor of the casino city, with the help of a few famous faces. 

The City of Lights called on some of its best-known resident musicians for the ad. Christina Aguilera, Shania Twain, and Aerosmith starred alongside UFC heavyweight Francis Ngannou and Lady Gaga's bandleader Brian Newman. In a twist on the classic slogan, the ad declares 'What happens here, only happens here'.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d3N8kjuAQ2c

It might only be a commercial, but it marks an important stepping-stone into a revived relationship between Las Vegas and the NFL. In the past the NFL has adamantly refused to allow Las Vegas commercials, based on its anti-gambling stance. A change of heart has since come around, partly due to the Oakland Raiders move to Nevada. Now they are known as the Las Vegas Raiders, uniting the city with the NFL. Las Vegas is now due to host the 2020 NFL Draft on a red carpet stage at the iconic Bellagio fountains.

Billy Vassiliadis is the CEO of R&R Partners, the advertising firm that came up with the new campaign slogan for Las Vegas. Remarking on the situation, Vassiliadis said "The entire relationship with the NFL has been recast and we are welcomed to be part of the NFL family now."

Michael Bay Directs for Hollywood Hard Rock

Another star-studded ad aired at the legendary football game. Hard Rock International's 'Big Game' commercial was a cinematic and bewildering tour de force. Michael Bay was brought in to direct the ad, lending his signature blend of action and over the top special effects. Fans will spot nods to some of his most famous movies, such as Transformers and Bad Boys.

The commercial is titled 'The Hype' and features the star of the Bowl's half time show, Jennifer Lopez.  When a thief scales the outside of Hard Rock's brand new guitar-shaped hotel to steal JLo's infamous bling cup, she sets off in pursuit through the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood. Famous faces cameo throughout the fast-paced ad. Keep your eyes peeled for Pitbull, A-Rod, DJ Khaled and Steven Van Zandt.

https://youtu.be/pHYiE4W4EO8

JLo commented, "The Hard Rock brand has celebrated and archived iconography and memorabilia that is synonymous with the best of music and entertainment. I hope this fun, action-packed spot filmed at The Hard Rock’s Guitar Hotel & Casino will continue to add to that tradition."

Hard Rock International's CEO, Jim Allen, praised the commercial that Michael Bay produced for the cutting edge casino. "We've designed it to be a story where once the commercial is presented, it has the ability to continue on… It's not just about the Hard Rock logo or 'Come to the Hard Rock Cafe.' There's actually a cool story that ties into why we went and spent the money to enter into a relationship with one of the greatest producers and directors in the world, Michael Bay."

Surprisingly, this was Michael Bay's first ever Super Bowl ad. He might be more familiar with the silver screen, but based on this year's efforts, we think he's a strong contender for more big game commercials in the years to come.