New Philadelphia Live! Casino Announces Opening Date

New Philadelphia Live! Casino Announces Opening Date
By Lou Monaco

Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia will open its new gaming and entertainment facility in the city’s Stadium District on Jan. 19.

Wednesday’s announcement said it will open with a series of reservation-only preview days for its Live! Rewards Club members. It will also host two invitation-only charity nights on Jan. 16-17 with all proceeds donated to Philadelphia area non-profit organizations, according to a news release.

Pending approval from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB), an official grand opening ceremony for the general public will take place in February and Live! Philadelphia will join the list of Pennsylvania casinos .

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“We are beyond excited to go Live! in Philadelphia and bring this world-class gaming and entertainment destination to the heart of the Stadium District,” Joe Billhimer, executive vice president for the Cordish Gaming Group, said in the news release. “What we have created here is unrivaled anywhere in the country. Sports fans, foodies, gaming enthusiasts, and anyone looking for a night of fun and excitement only has to make one stop to experience it all.”

The Live! Casino will feature a FanDuel Sportsbook retail location and state-of-the-art AV system, including a giant 52-foot LED display and 24 televisions for ultimate sports viewing, according to the news release.

The 510,000 square-foot property will also include:

  • More than 2,100 slots and electronic table games,
  • 150 live-action table games.
  • A dedicated 29-table Poker Room.

Casinos Reopened This Week

Pennsylvania’s casinos, which closed on Dec. 12 because of the spike in coronavirus cases, began reopening on Monday.

Rivers Casino Philadelphia (the only casino within the city limits) and South Philadelphia Race and Sportsbook, which both closed on Nov. 20, will remain closed until at least Jan. 15, under current restrictions by the City of Philadelphia.

The casinos were able to reopen at 50% occupancy; self-certified restaurants may open at 50% capacity for indoor dining — restaurants that have not self-certified are at 25% capacity for indoor dining; on-premises alcohol consumption is prohibited unless part of a meal; and cocktails-to-go and carryout beverages are allowed.

COVID-19 safety protocols will continue to be followed and the out-of-state testing requirement will remain.

The first casino shutdown took place on March 17 when all state casinos were closed at the start of the pandemic. The lockdown lasted until July 17, when Rivers Casino Philadelphia resumed operations.

To prepare for its opening, Live! Casino has developed an enhanced health and sanitation program that allows for increased cleaning frequency, physical distancing, reduced occupancies, new technology and vigorous hygiene and health measures.

“Our top priority is to provide a safe environment for our team members and guests," Billhimer said in the release. "We've gone through extraordinary measures to meet and exceed Pennsylvania's COVID-19 guidelines to ensure all of our guests have fun and feel safe.”



Lou Monaco had been East Coast Scene columnist for Gaming Today in Las Vegas since June 2019, covering the East Coast sportsbook scene with emphasis on NJ and PA. He also currently is a part-time writer for the high school sports department for NJ Advanced Media ( in Iselin, NJ. Lou has over 30 years sports experience with previous stints at ESPN SportsTicker, Daily Racing Form and Oddschecker.

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