Sportsbooks Now Fully Operational in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia
The total number of sportsbooks up and running in Pennsylvania is currently at three now that the Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh and the SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia have officially opened for business. The Hollywood Casino launched its own sports betting facility in November.
The Launch of These Two Sportsbooks
Since both the SugarHouse and Rivers Casinos are operated by Rush Street Gambling, they held a simultaneous soft launch last Thursday afternoon.
Both are powered by Kambi.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) members were on-site for the launch to keep an eye on operations during the testing phase.
Officially Open for Business
After a successful launching period of 10-hour test periods on December 13 and 14, both casinos are now officially open for business.
The PGCB was satisfied that the tests went smoothly and so both venues were given the sanction to officially open their sportsbooks on Saturday, December 15.
A Lengthy Project Since the Beginning
SugarHouse and Rivers casinos were granted licenses for sports betting on October 31. According to SugarHouse GM Cheryl Duhon, who has been working there for about six months, this has been a challenging project since she started:
“We’ve been working on this since I started with SugarHouse about six months now. It’s been a true partnership and collaboration between our team, the PGCB and gaming…Just been working really hard to get it done. We are really excited to get going.”
As for now, both sportsbooks are only temporary. The one at SugarHouse can seat approximately 80 people at 1,800 square feet. Their new sportsbook, which is in the planning stage, will be much bigger. Rivers, which is operated by Rush Street and owned by High Pitt Gaming and Walton Street Capital, has a 3,000-square-foot lounge.
SugarHouse has submitted its proposal for the new sportsbook, which is expected to open in the spring. It will be located on the central gaming floor where the current Lucky Red Lounge is located.
The new luxury lounge space will have space for 70 people and will offer iGaming with online wagering, sports cashiers, self-service kiosks, and plenty of screens. Food and drinks will also be available within the sportsbook.
Sports Betting in the U.S.
The Supreme Court overturned a federal ban on sports betting in states outside Nevada back in May. Since then it has been up to each state to set its own rules and regulations surrounding sports gambling.
Aside from Nevada, there are currently seven states with full-full-scale legalized sports betting: Delaware, New Jersey, Rhode Island, West Virginia, Mississippi, New Mexico, and Pennsylvania. New York and Arizona have recently passed sports betting bills but no sportsbooks have yet opened.
Sports Betting in Pennsylvania
As mentioned above, Penn National Gaming’s Hollywood Casino was the first to open its legal sportsbook, which is powered by William Hill. A fourth casino, Greenwood Gaming’s Parx Casino, is likely to announce its sportsbook launch some time over the next few weeks.
There are still other facilities in the state that plan to open their own sportsbooks in the coming year, including an off-track betting venue and four other PA casinos.
Pennsylvania and New Jersey have an advantage over other states because they will have online sports betting, which is expected to maximize revenue compared to states with only on-site betting. SugarHouse Sportsbook will launch its online betting services early next year.
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