The historic Parx Casino and Racing first opened in November 1974. But it wasn’t until December 2006 (December 2009 for the standalone casino) did the old venue known as Philadelphia Park at the time start offering casino gaming.
Throughout the 2010s, the casino located in the Philadelphia suburb of Bensalem, Pennsylvania has since evolved to become the largest complex in the state. And with the popularity and economic boost the gambling scene has brought, you can tack on further growth throughout the 2020s.
But there’s enough at this casino to keep you busy for a week. Add in the excellent dining and entertainment options, and you need not go anywhere else. But if you’re looking to explore the area, there are also plenty of local attractions at your disposal.
Ready to take a tour of Pennsylvania’s best gambling? Let’s get started.
Parx Casino History
As mentioned in the intro the racetrack was founded in 1974 and opened up Keystone Racetrack, built to replace Liberty Bell Park Racetrack in Northeast Philadelphia. ITB purchased the track in 1984 and hence, a name change was in order.
The newly named Philadelphia Park continued Keystone’s and Liberty Bell’s tradition of offering Thoroughbred racing. But upon ITB’s purchase, the company laid out new turf and brought along Phonebet. The most technologically advanced way to wager on horse racing at the time.
Greenwood Racing Inc. bought the track in 1990 and added full-card simulcasting.
In September 2006, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board granted the track a conditional slot license which paved the way to transform the racetrack into a racino. Final approval came three months later in December 2006.
And Philadelphia Park Racetrack and Casino opened its doors on the first and third floors of the racetrack. This, however, stood as the temporary casino. Exactly three years later, on December 18th, 2009, the standalone Parx Casino opened.
Parx now contains over 3,300 real money slots
. Electronic gaming like video poker, Blackjack, and Roulette was also made available upon opening, but in 2010, 199 tables of live gaming arrived. In 2018, the venue added a 48-table poker room.
And in October 2018, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board approved Parx’s application for a sports betting license.
So, like many casinos in Pennsylvania, Parx offers everything from horse racing to poker if you’re an avid casino gamer. And as the largest casino and racing complex in Pennsylvania, it offers a lot of it.
Let’s look closer at which games you can expect in the electronic gaming, table, and poker rooms.
Gaming at Parx Casino
Parx Casino gaming includes your favorite traditional and most recent additions in their slot room that comprises over 3,300 machines.
Whether you’re looking for a classic like Monopoly or something fun and interesting like Christmas Vacation (yes, that Christmas Vacation), you will find it in what is 150,000 square feet of real estate.
So, what are you looking to play first? Wheel of Fortune? Wonka? Lightning Link? Come in and try your hand at the games.
Also featured are over 60 electronic table games like Blackjack and Roulette, along with video poker. So if you’re not ready to get in on the table gaming action, no worries. Parx has you covered.
Are you in the mood for table gaming action? You need not look any further. As mentioned in the intro, we’re looking at 199 table games featuring the best action north of Philadelphia. What are you looking to get in on? Craps? Roulette? Blackjack? Why not all three?
Up for some poker? Parx has your game. Whether you’re in for no-limit Texas Hold ‘em, Omaha, or Stud, you can test your skill against some of the best poker players Eastern Pennsylvania offers.
And Pennsylvania is one of the first states in the nation to bring sports betting into their casinos. So, what are you looking to bet on? Pro football? Baseball? Both? It’s all here at Parx.
You don’t even need to be in the casino to place your bets if you download the Parx Sports Betting app. So long as you remain within state borders, place your bets against the spread, over-unders, parlays, and more.
Parx Casino Dining
What’s a great casino experience without the best dining around? You don’t have one. Luckily, you’ll have an outstanding experience at Parx because not only do you have top-notch dining options; you can also choose between upscale dining, casual dining, or the quick in and out.
Here’s a rundown of Parx Casino’s dining options:
The award-winning, upscale food and atmosphere is found at Parxgrill. They feature the area’s unique menu options, along with seasonal specialties inspired by the restaurant’s top-notch chefs.
Farm to fork is how the Liberty Bell Gastropub describes its casual dining option. And comfort foods are their specialty. Whether you’re in the mood for the best gourmet burgers around. Made from local ingredients, premium pork, or free-range chicken, you’ll find all of it here.
Whether craft beers, fine wine, or specialty cocktails are on your mind, The Liberty Bell Beer Garden has you covered. How do chef-inspired dishes along with an all-season firepit sound to spice up the atmosphere? Hey, you can count me in.
Chef Joe Zhou personally designed the Bambu Noodle House’s menu. So whether you’re in the mood for appetizers, soups, Peking Duck, or steamed lotus, rest assured you’re getting the highest quality Asian-inspired cuisine in the area.
Add a high-end food menu plus the area’s largest craft beer and superior cocktail selection. You get Xlounge. The highest-quality lounge slash bar on Philadelphia’s North Side. Take a seat in those luxury couches and you will experience paradise on Earth.
Are you the grab and go type? The Lucky Cheese is your place. Featuring grilled cheeses, panini, soups, salad entrees, and more, this is your one-stop-shop for the best grab and go food in the area.
Voted the #1 Sports Bar in America, Chickie’s & Pete’s is rocking with fresh seafood, beer towers, interactive gaming, and the big Philadelphia Eagles games. If you’re the sporty type, you know where to go.
Only the top foodies in the area will love what Foodies offers. So if you’re a foodie, hop into this laid back atmosphere and take advantage of the venue’s freshest area ingredients. Served right on the go.
And don’t forget to check out Jax, Parx’s premier sports bar. Experience adrenaline-pumping video poker at one of the 20 machines scattered about the venue while watching your Eagles, Flyers, Phillies, and Sixers bring home another W.
Parx Casino Promotions and Entertainment
Promos and entertainment are always a thing here at Parks. The primary promotion includes the Parx Casino Xclub. And yes, the Xclub involves instant rewards, such as free slot play, sweepstakes entries, points, casino comps, and more.
Sign up, play, and earn points. The more you play, the higher your status at Xclub becomes over the next six months. So, if you play often and earn 7,500-plus credits, you’ll find yourself at Elite Status. And earning benefits like priority gift pickup, next car up valet service, priority food reservations, and more.
The catch? You need to accumulate the number of points every six months. But once you’re at a specific status, you’ll keep those points for six months while accumulating rewards points for the next six months. Play often and never lose that status.
Entertainment at Parx Casino is always rocking and rolling. The party is going on all night long with live entertainment at the Xcite Center, the casino’s premier live entertainment venue. If you’re looking for the greatest local acts in the area, Xlounge and Chickie’s & Pete’s have you covered.
Come in, get entertained, enjoy a cocktail or two, and have a night to remember after a day of gaming at the casino.
Parx Casino Accommodations and Nearby Attractions
There are six awesome venues to choose from when planning your casino trip.
Let’s begin with the Marriott in Bensalem, where you’ll experience perhaps the most luxurious stay of the bunch. Prices begin at $129 plus tax.
Casual options include the Holiday Inn, Radisson Hotel, Wyndham Philadelphia, Best Western Plus, and Extended Stay Philadelphia. The prices are subject to change, but they price the options listed here between $82 and $99, plus tax.
Looking to take time off from the casino and explore the area? Good idea, as you’re near the epicenter of American history, science, and sports.
Obviously, there are plenty of bars and venues in the surrounding area to watch your favorite Philadelphia area sports teams. And if you’re lucky enough to get into the show, more power to you. Especially those Eagles games.
If you’re into history, you’ll love the attractions abound in this area, including the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. You can also visit the Philadelphia Zoo and Camden Aquarium to find the best exotic wildlife in the world in some of America’s largest and oldest attractions.
Parx Casino Racing
And as with all racinos, we always need to dedicate time to racing. Parx Casino is one of the few casinos to have an additional website to its casino site dedicated completely to horse racing.
So for the complete rundown including the event schedule, Phonebet, race results, horsemen, and wagering information, visit the Parx Racing website.
Now for the brief rundown. What can you expect at Parx Racing?
You’re looking at live racing from the best thoroughbred horses in the nation. Horses, jockeys, and trainers come here from all over the US to face off. And if you can’t make it to the casino to get in on the action and place your bet, pick up all the action on the simulcast.
So, whether you’re live at the track or if you’re on crunch time and can’t make it to the big events, never sweat. Place your bet online, watch the simulcast, cheer on your horse, and hopefully, they’ll win you some dough.
Now, as they say at Parx: Let’s Go Racing.
As you can see, Parx Casino and Racing is by far the largest casino and racetrack complex the State of Pennsylvania offers. With thousands of slot games and nearly 200 table games, you’ll never get bored.
If sports betting and horse racing are your thing, then you can spend all day watching the games and races 52 weeks a year.
What’s not to get excited about?
And if you venture off the casino grounds, there’s a large city just south of Bensalem waiting to be explored. One that is rich in history and tradition.
So what are you waiting for?
Plan your trip to Parx Casino and Racing today.
And have you been here? Let us know in the comments and tell us about your experience.