The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board on October 3 approved the state’s first two sports betting licenses to the Dauphin County-based Hollywood Casino and Parx Casino in Bensalem. These are the first operators to be given the go-ahead for sports in the Keystone State since the May US Supreme Court ruling that repealed PASPA and paved the way for national sports betting.
While Parx Casino anticipates kick off sports betting by November ahead of the peak wagering season that will begin with the National Football League playoffs, Hollywood Casino did not give a specific date or timeline within which we can expect its operator’s sports betting offering to go live. Both casinos did, however, lay out their sports betting venue plans to the gaming control board – each of them has promised an outstanding and full-scale array of televised sports so as to enhance the wagering experience.
Parx Casino has plans to transform its 360 Lounge into a temporary sports book that will feature seven betting windows and 12 self-service kiosks. In addition to this, the sports book’s lounge will also feature to 16-by-9-foot high definition television screens that will be displaying betting odds as well as a score of 75-inch televisions that will be showing the actual sporting events.
Parx also has plans to renovate its South Philadelphia-based off-track betting outlet, Turf Club, as a satellite sportsbook – the casino will be spending $1 million to acquire new paint, new carpet, 150 high definition televisions as well as more security measures.
Sands Bethlehem Applies for Interactive Gaming License
Sands has no plans to offer online gambling itself but it did all the same due to an acquisition deal that was announced back in March. According to Sands’ general counsel, they only applied for the online gambling license because the Poarch Band of Creek Indians, who are working to acquire the casino for $1.3 billion, want in on the state’s sports betting industry.
The move was quite surprising because, Sheldon Adelson, the Las Vegas Sands chief executive officer has been a strong opposer of online gambling. Fortunately, the sale might just go down as expected since the gaming control board did approve Las Vegas Sands’ license application along with Boyd’s Valley Forge Casino which will be offering video poker, online slots, table games, and live dealer games.
Rivers Casino Backs Out of Online Gambling Bid
The number of licensed Pennsylvanian casinos that were pursuing online gaming licenses has reduced by one after the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board announced that Rivers Casino had rescinded its interactive gaming application.
“Rivers Casino Pittsburgh intends to provide iGaming to Western Pennsylvania and the Commonwealth; however, we’re taking additional time to explore the various options for doing so. Rivers is actively pursuing a sports wagering certificate to offer both land-based and mobile sports betting,” a spokesperson for the casino said.
Rivers’ parent company Rush Street Gaming will, however, still be offering online gambling products through its Philadelphia-area-based operation, SugarHouse Casino.