Three casinos in Pennsylvania took advantage of the early registration deadline and registered for online gaming licenses. This will enable them to offer a variety of games online.
This is the latest effort by the state of Pennsylvania to offer as many gaming opportunities as it can.
The state began to legalize forms of gaming other than horse racing and lotteries nearly 10 years ago and has given permission for casinos to continue to operate online, as well as offline, if they apply for gaming licenses. Sports betting is also going to be allowed. Now that the initial 90-day application period has expired, any other casino that wants to apply for a license will have to pay an additional fee. The three casinos that applied just as the early-bird deadline approached were Parx Casino in Bensalem; Mount Airy Casino Resort, in Mount Pocono; and the Stadium Casino in South Philadelphia, which is still under construction. The casinos paid $10 million in application fees, which means they are able to offer slot machines, table games, and poker.
Any remaining gaming licenses will be auctioned off to corporations outside Pennsylvania that are interested in getting into the gaming industry in the Keystone State. There are currently a total of 12 licenses in each category.
Parx Casino and Racetrack
Parx Casino and Racetrack has horse racing as well as a casino and is currently the largest gaming institution in Pennsylvania. The casino has 3,500 slot machines, 140 table games, such as baccarat and craps, and a 60-table poker room with several high-limit poker tables. Races are both live and simulcast. The Pennsylvania Derby is held on the 1-mile track every year. Parx Casino has expressed an interest in getting into both online gaming and sports gaming, and paid $10 million for a license to offer online gaming, which may include a sportsbook. At this time, Parx Casino has not stated whether it will develop its own online games or partner with an existing online gaming platform.
Mount Airy Casino Resort
Mount Airy Casino Resort is located in Mount Pocono, which is situated in the tourist-friendly Poconos Mountains. The property has nearly 190 rooms and is situated on the grounds of a resort that had been in the area since the late 19th century. The casino has 1,800 slot machines, 40 table games, including high-limit poker tables, a large nightclub that features acts, such as Alanis Morissette, and a spa. Mount Airy purchased licenses in online gaming as well and has already contracted with the largest online poker gaming company in the world, PokerStars. The casino is also poised to offer a sportsbook. Mount Airy has billed itself as a historic hotel and spa, but rather than catering to honeymooners with floor-to-ceiling windows, champagne-shaped bathtubs, and velvet beds, it has, instead, marketed itself as a retreat for the 21st century. It would appear that the licenses would be a step in that direction.
Stadium Casino has not even been built yet, but the owners of the title and casino rights have paid $10 million for slots, casino games, and poker. The casino is supposed to be located in close proximity to the stadiums where the Phillies and Eagles play, but no ground has been broken and the property’s purchase has not been discussed. The owners of the casino license haven’t said publicly when they will indeed break ground for the casino. While it may be a while before this casino opens, there must be a physical location before any gaming on-site or online can begin.
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