Parx Online Casino PA Review
Parx Casino is one of the six licensed racinos in the state of Pennsylvania which is a 20-minute drive away from the city center of Philadelphia. It combines a horse racing track with the biggest casino facility in PA.
There you can find:
- More than 3,500 slots,
- Two poker rooms,
- Over 130 table games,
- Live or simulcast racing.
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Something that makes Parx Casino unique are the innovative hybrid games which allow visitors to play baccarat, live dealer blackjack or roulette on a slot machine.
Casino slots gambling was legalized in Pennsylvania in 2004 and two years later Philadelphia Park received a permit from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) to construct another casino with slot machines. It was launched in December 2006 and its name was changed to Parx in 2009.
The next year table games were legalized in Pennsylvania and Parx Casino began offering such type of games in July 2010. Later the same year a new building was added to the facility in order to have more space for extra table games and slot machines. The building is called Parx East.
Parx Casino is expected to launch its online casino and sports betting app within the first three months of 2019. The company is known for being one of the best in the Pennsylvania gambling industry, so there is no doubt that it will strive to provide a high-class sportsbook and online casino similar to the ones found in New Jersey or Europe.
Parx Amenities Overview
Parx Casino and Racetrack functions 24/7 every day without a break. There are live racing events from Saturdays to Tuesdays during the months from February until December. But you can wager on other races throughout the country when it’s off season at Parx.
Do you want to grab a bite while you are at the Parx Casino? You can choose from variety of options – from quick snack to some exquisite dining experience.
Here are some of the places where you can satisfy your appetite:
- Parxgrill – works during the evening. It is the award-winning high-class restaurant of the Parx facility. You can choose from season dishes to classic cuisine.
- Bambu Noodle House
- Chickie’s & Pete’s
- Earl of Sandwich
- Foodies, a 24/7 eatery
- Paddock Grill for fast food (in Parx East)
- Sang Kee Noodle House (in Parx East)
Entertainment and nightlife
The entertainment at Parx Casino isn’t as crazy as Las Vegas but if you want to have a relaxing night with several drinks and friends, there are numerous options.
The Xlounge provides craft beer, cocktails and wine along with good cuisine. There is also Happy Hour from Wednesday to Sundays between 4pm and 6pm when you can enjoy small dishes and beverages at prices starting from $4.
Bar 360 offers another Happy Hour with appetizers and drinks daily between 5pm and 7pm.
All sports fans are welcomed in Jax or Chickie’s & Pete’s where they can watch sports events on the TV screens, grab a drink and play video poker at the same time.
When it comes to entertainment bar 360 is the place to be:
- On Friday and Saturday night the bar opens its dance floor and welcomes DJs, local bands, cabarets and other types of performers.
- On Wednesday is time for some laughter with Comedy Night.
- On Thursday every guest can receive a free dance lesson because it’s Latin Night.
- On Sunday between 3pm and 9pm it’s “open mic” time when everyone can show a hidden talent and become the star at Parx Casino.
Parx Casino is conveniently located near the city of Philadelphia and you can either reach it by driving on the I-95, the Pennsylvania Turnpike, the US 1 or by hopping on a Septa bus. The parking lot at Parx can accommodate over 5,000 cars.
Unfortunately, there is no accommodation for people included in the premises of the casino. The closest hotel is half-mile away. However, if you are part of the casino’s player club called Xclub, you will be entitled to discounts at the following hotels:
|Name of hotel||Price per night||Group code|
|Radisson hotel Northeast Philadelphia||$99 plus tax||PAR|
|Courtyard Marriott – Bensalem||$109 plus tax||PXCH|
|Extended Stay America||$69 plus tax (free Wi-Fi included)||EAPAR|
|Best Western Plus||$85 plus tax (free Wi-Fi and breakfast included)||ParxPoker|
Parx Casino Overview
Who is eligible to play in the casino?
You have to be at least 21 years old to place wagers at the Parx Casino and Racetrack. The age restriction is the same in all Pennsylvania casinos due to the strict rules set by the PGCB.
Is Parx Casino secure?
As we mentioned above, the Parx Casino is licensed by the PGCB and is obliged to follow all regulations coming from the agency. The PGCB audits and controls all operations at the Parx Casino in order to ensure the best standards of fairness and security.
On the other hand, Parx has a great history in the gambling industry which also serves as a guarantee for its security and fairness. The Parx Racetrack has been working for over 40 years and has hosted famous events such as the Pennsylvania Derby.
And to prove even further our statement we will add that Parx is the only casino in Pennsylvania that has received the Best of Philly Award 2016 given by Philadelphia Magazine.
There have been accusations about the slot machines at Parx (as well as any other PA casino) being too tight. But actually the numbers at Parx are the best in the state with a payback of 91.1 percent.
Parx Casino Games
The Parx Casino opened doors in 2006 and later on the premises were expanded with an additional building which was named Parx East. The casino offers more than 3500 slot machines and over 130 live table games at an area of 260,000 square feet. Amazing, right?
You can also find two poker rooms – one with 80 tables in the main casino building and one more with 45 tables located in Parx East. The latter building provides a good look over the racetrack so visitors may enjoy the racing events from there.
All gaming areas are divided into smoking and non-smoking sections. Despite that, there have been numerous complaints that the smoke smell is quite strong in the non-smoking area as well. This problem is typical for all casinos in Pennsylvania not just Parx.
As we mentioned above, there is a huge variety of slot machines in Parx Casino – from simple reel games to the most modern video slots – there is a game for every taste. Bets vary from 1 penny to $100 per spin.
Here are the Parx Casino featured slots which gather a lot of attention lately:
- Black Window
- Cherry Mischief
- Michael Jackson King of Pop
- Superman the Movie
- The Walking Dead
- Willy Wonka
Xclusive is a separate gaming section where high-end slot players can take advantage of excellent beverage service, 24/7 host and a private cashier while playing slots with stakes from $1 to $100.
Slot games returns in Parx are higher than other PA casinos
It is a common fact that slot machines are tighter in Pennsylvania than in other locations around the country. Despite that fact, Parx Casino return rates were actually a bit higher compared to the rest of the casinos in the state.
It’s unclear if this was just a one-time thing or a constant trend. Have in mind that the return to player rate in Pennsylvania is set to only 85 percent by the PGCB.
We advise you to stay away from the penny machines at Parx Casino and also always consider your budget and your playing time. Another tip is to avoid chasing your losses and be mindful about your luck because it can change at any time.
Parx Casino provides numerous video poker games as well as 100+ machines for hybrid games such as roulette, blackjack and three card poker. Some of the mentioned games even have the live dealer feature.
Thanks to Parx East the casino increased its gaming area and managed to add more table games for its visitors. Below you can find the most popular choices for this type of games:
- Big Six Wheel
- Casino War
- Four card poker
- Let It Ride
- Midi and mini baccarat
- Paigow Poker
- Paigow tiles
- Sic Bo
- Spanish 21
- Three card poker
Make sure to know the rules of each game before playing. We also advise you to choose games with lower house such as craps, blackjack or baccarat because you have a higher chance of winning at them.
This is the most played table game at Parx Casino. It is a preferred choice because it combines low house edge with the skills and luck of the player. There are several different types of blackjack and the variety of rules may change the outcome of the game.
Actually, it doesn’t matter in which Pennsylvania casino you choose to play blackjack because the PGCB has set the same rules to apply to all casinos in the state. This means that you can enjoy a fantastic game of blackjack with a small house edge wherever you are in Pennsylvania.
Find the state rules here:
- Blackjack pays 3:2
- Dealer stands on soft 17
- Doubling down after splits
- Doubling down allowed on any two cards
- Late surrender
- Splits up to three hands (except aces)
At Parx Casino you can take advantage of a side bet called Match the Dealer. It means that at least one of the first two cards of the player matches the upcard of the dealer numerically.
Parx Casino visitors are privileged to play the hybrid games. They are called like that because you can simultaneously enjoy a live dealer table game with the comfort of a slot game. You are positioned in front of a slot terminal which live streams the dealer’s table. You can place wagers through a touch screen with a minimum bet of $5.
Shaq Blackjack is a hybrid game named after the famous NBA star Shaquille O’Neal. The game accepts standard as well as side bets. Real cards are shown on the screen and it’s just you against the dealer. You don’t have to worry about the hands of other players.
Hybrid roulette and baccarat allow players to wager on maximum four live games at the same time.
Are you a poker fan? Then Parx Poker Room is the place to be because many people claim it’s the best option for playing poker in the state of Pennsylvania. Thanks to its popularity, huge amounts of money go into the Parx Poker Room and this is the reason why new players are a bit afraid to join.
The smallest option you could start from is the $1-$2 no-limit cash game. There are regular tournaments which cause a huge traffic of visitors at the Parx Casino. The poker room provides delicious menu, excellent bar service and free Wi-Fi.
Parx Casino Poker Tournaments
If you want to join some of the special tournaments like the Big Stax which go on for several days during the year, you will need a huge bank account and a lot of free time.
A cheaper option is the Tuesday night tournament which offers 20-minute blinds and buy-ins for a entry fee of $100 + $20. In the Survivor contest all winners get the same prize of $1000.
There are also other options such as bounty, re-entry and turbo tournaments. Their buy-ins and entry fees vary from $65 + $15 to $200 + $30.
Of course, Parx Casino couldn’t go without a reward program for the loyal players. It’s called the Xclub and you can easily become a member by registering online. Afterwards, you should go to the Xclub booth located in the casino and get your loyalty card from there. As a new member you are entitled to $10 in free slots which will be already on your card.
Every person who owns a Xclub card collects points or credits while playing. The earned credits can be exchanged for food or drinks. You can get one credit by wagering $60 on video poker or $20 on slot games. Bets on table games also give you credits but the rates vary depending on the type of game.
Similar to other loyalty rewards programs in the country, Xclub has different tier levels which entitle the players to variety of benefits. To determine the current tier level of a player the casino checks the number of credits collected during the past six months. Have in mind that Xtra Play and Free slot play aren’t taken into consideration for your current tier level.
Here are the three levels of Xclub:
- Players: 999 credits or less
- Premium: 1,000+ credits
- Elite: 7,500+ credits
Players from all tier level may take advantage of the following privileges:
- Access to current promo offers
- Complimentary casino floor beverage service
- Exclusive discounts on products or services by local partners
- Entries into sweepstakes
- Extra food and beverage offers
- Free slot play
- Special birthday offers
Premium players get the following extra benefits:
- Complimentary casino floor top shelf beverage service
- Exclusive invitations
- Free valet service
- No cover charge at 360
Elite players are entitled to all privileges of Premium card member plus the following:
- Gift pickup
- Private gated parking
- Priority restaurant reservations
- Priority lines for the Xclub, cashier, and valet
Additional benefits of the Xclub Card outside of Parx
Parx casino has numerous community partners which provide special discounts or offers on products or services to members of the Xclub. For example, if you want to book a room in one of the hotels we already mentioned in the table above, you can use the given group code when you make your reservation. Afterwards, when you check in at the hotel you only need to show your Xclub card to receive the discounted rate.
As in any other casino, there are aspects of Parx which can be improved as well as areas in which the casino excels.
Things which need improvement
Have in mind that Parx doesn’t provide a lot of options for low-end players. If you want to play a table game for less than $25 per hand, then you will have very narrow choice. Perhaps you will receive better value for money in another Pennsylvania casino.
The reviews on top platforms such as TripAdvisor and Yelp give a lot of valuable insights and suggestions for improvements such as:
- More helpful staff
- Quicker beverage service
- Less tight slots
- Less smoke smell in the non-smoking sections
- Lower minimums on table games
Another problem faced by Parx Casino is the shortage of gifts from giveaway promotions. There aren’t enough gifts in stock so the casino runs out of them rather quickly and substitutes the prize with free slot play instead.
Last but not least, there isn’t hotel facility at Parx and you have to make your own reservation if you’d like to stay for more than just a day.
Advantages of Parx Casino
Parx Casino is a top choice for many players due to the following reasons:
- Better slot payouts than the rest of the Pennsylvania casinos
- Excellent restaurants, bars, and evening entertainment
- High quality racing events
- Huge selection of games, including unique innovative games and hybrid ones
- Perfect blackjack rules
When you are at Parx Casino you are guaranteed to have good time in terms of playing, dining and entertainment. It is definitely worth visiting.