Happy Thanksgiving from GGB; Newsletter Returns December 4

SugarHouse Casino: We Want Poker

Hoping to diversify its offerings and gain market share ahead of a planned second Philadelphia casino, SugarHouse Casino on the Philly waterfront has once again asked the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board to approve a temporary poker room.

Temporary room would open during expansion

Officials with SugarHouse Casino, thus far the only casino within the city limits of Philadelphia, has asked the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board for the right to open a temporary poker room.

The facility would contain between 24 and 27 tables and would be a temporary addition to the Delaware River gaming hall as it builds out its permanent $155 million expansion.

In January, SugarHouse first asked for permission to open a poker room. The state board declined to vote, and instead requested more information on the eventual permanent expansion plan.

SugarHouse is gearing up for new competition in the years to come as the City of Brotherly Love plans a second, larger casino. Its efforts to block that development, citing market saturation and flat lining slot revenues in the Keystone State, have been unsuccessful.

According to CBS Philadelphia, the application process for a second casino closed on February 26. At that time, William Ryan, chairman of the Gaming Control Board, said a selection would be made in 60 days. It didn’t happen.

“Well, I’m an optimist, I’ll say that,” Ryan said. “But all I can tell you is that we are working hard, and we continue to deliberate.”

“It’s a very difficult decision,” Gaming Board member Keith McCall added. “It could break in a day, it could break in a week, it could break in two months. But we’re discussing, we’re at the table, we’re talking.”A majority of the seven-member board must agree on the winning applicant.