Rivers Casino Online PA Review
Rivers Casino is the proud owner of 450,000 square foot area for gaming and entertainment located along the Ohio River. The casino is close to the North Shore of downtown Pittsburgh. The company behind Rivers Casino is Holdings Acquisitions Co., LP.
The casino was launched on August 9, 2009 and back then the only types of games that were legalized were slot machines.
But when table games became legal in 2010, Rivers Casino quickly added them to its selection in July the same year.
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) regulates the Rivers Casino as well as the other legal brick-and-mortar casinos in the PA state.
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Rivers Amenities Overview
Location and parking
You can conveniently reach Rivers Casino because it’s so close to Heinz Field (home of the Pittsburgh Steelers) and PNC Park (home of the Pittsburgh Pirates) that you could walk from there. Sport fans often prefer to visit the casino after a game has just finished.
This means that there is huge traffic at the parking of the casino and premium prices for parking spots when the Steelers or Pirates play at their home stadiums. But on a regular day the parking at Rivers Casino is free of charge for all guests. If you want to use the valet parking option free as well, you need to have a membership card of higher level. Otherwise, you will be charged $3 if you have other casino card or $6 for the general public.
Tasty food and variety of beverages are offered to visitors of the casino who not only wish to gamble but to have a wholesome experience. We have listed the five properties suitable for dining at Rivers Casino:
- Andrew’s steak & seafood – this restaurant has won the Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence. It operates on evenings from Wednesday to Saturday and offers fresh seafood, exquisite desserts, extraordinary appetizers and more.
- Ciao – This Italian style restaurant operates from 7AM to 6AM the next morning and offers sandwiches, pizzas and homemade gelato.
- Flipt – The newest addition to Rivers Casino which provides premium burgers from 11AM to 2PM every day. There you can also enjoy onion rings, chicken fingers, nacho chips, mozzarella sticks and more.
- Grand view buffet – this venue offers delicious meals at reasonable prices. It is open for lunch and dinner every day with one exception – every Sunday they serve brunch instead of regular lunch.
- Wheelhouse bar & grill – this bar is perfect for watching a game of your beloved Pittsburgh team with a group of friends. The place provides thorough menu with burgers, salads, soups, starters, sandwiches, and more. It’s open daily from 11AM to 11PM, except for Fridays and Sundays when it works till 1AM.
Below you can find what Rivers Casino offers for entertainment of its guests:
- Levels – it’s a multi-tier lounge that works from 7PM to 10PM on Thursdays and from 9PM until midnight on Fridays and Saturdays. Levels frequently invites local bands to perform.
- Drum Bar – thanks to its French window this bar provides stunning view over the Ohio River. There are live DJ set from 8:30PM to 12:30AM on Fridays and Saturdays.
Happy Hour is valid for both bars from 5PM till 7PM on Mondays through Thursdays when you can get a drink for $3.
Unfortunately, there is no hotel at the Rivers Casino PA but you can take advantage of discounted prices at the partnering hotels which are located in the Pittsburgh area. These are the closest hotels to Rivers Casino:
- Hyatt Place – it’s 0.8 miles away from the casino and the prices per room per night start at $149. Discounts are available for Hyatt Gold Card members, seniors, AAA members, and government employees.
- Parador Inn – it’s 0.6 miles away from Rivers Casino and the prices start from $160 per night. The hotel provides free parking and Wi-Fi plus breakfast.
- Residence Inn North Shore – it’s 0.8 miles away and the prices for a room per night begin at $199. You can take advantage of the Stay and Play package. There are famous Pittsburgh restaurants and attractions nearby. The hotel provides free shuttle to Rivers Casino, free Wi-Fi and hot breakfast buffet.
Resorts Casino Overview
Who is eligible to play in the casino?
You need to be at least 21 years old to be able to gamble at Rivers Casino. The age restriction applies to all licensed casinos in Pennsylvania and it strictly followed.
Is Rivers Casino secure?
Rivers Casino is among the establishments which is licensed and regulated by the PGCB. This means that it follows all rules set by the agency regarding fairness and security.
The casino has also won several awards which prove its trustworthiness – Best Overall Casino in Pennsylvania by Strictly Slots and Best Overall Gaming Resort in Pennsylvania by Casino Player. It was also voted Best Casino by the readers of Pittsburgh Tribune-Review several consequent years.
Rivers Casino Games
Rivers Casino PA operates non-stop so you can enjoy your favorite casino games at any time you’d like. You can choose from a great selection of more than 2900 slots, poker room with 30 tables and over 100 table games.
There is a slot machine for every taste – from simple low-end games to more advanced and innovative ones. You can set your budget and choose from variety of stakes starting at one cent and as high as $100.
The slot machines with highest jackpots are marked with a sign “Red Hot” so look out for them when you go to Rivers Casino PA.
Here are some of the most famous Rivers Casino slot machines:
- Cash Spin Quick Hits
- Sphinx 3D
- The Walking Dead awestruck
- Willy Wonka
- Wheel of Fortune
If you are a high-stake player, you might want to try out the following slots:
- Double Top Dollar
- Quick Hits Platinum
- Wheel of Fortune
Similar to all other Pennsylvania casinos, Rivers Casino experiences the same problems. Lots of visitors complain about the smoke smell which can be felt even in the non-smoking sections of the premises. And the other issue is that the slots are too tight so even a $100-stake vanishes very quickly.
What is the reason behind the tight slot payouts?
There have been numerous complaints received from all casinos in the state of Pennsylvania that the payouts of slot machines are much lower compared to other states. The reason for this is the minimum payout rate of 85% set by the PGCB. Additionally, PA casino operators have to deal with a tax rate of 55% on slot machines.
It’s only normal that many players are switching from slots to table games where they have higher chance of winning.
You can find lots of video poker games at Rivers Casino. The center of the casino floor accommodates the Spiral Bar where visitors can play a video poker game of their choice while enjoying their favorite drink as well. The bar works from 9AM to 2AM every day.
To make its portfolio complete, the Rivers Casino offers a selection of table games. Below you can find the options for table games:
- Big Six wheel
- Crazy 4 Poker
- Four card poker
- Let It Ride
- Mini baccarat
- Midi baccarat
- Mississippi stud
- Paigow poker
- Three card poker
As you can see, Rivers Casino offers traditional table games, as well as some special games. Make sure to get to know the rules of the game you intend to play in advance so you maximize your profits.
A game with very good odds is the European roulette. If you want to bet on roulette, always choose this option because it has a single zero and 2.7% house edge. In comparison, the American roulette has a double zero additionally and high house edge of 5.26%.
Learn how to play casino games
Great news for all new players – Rivers Casino provides gambling lessons where you can learn the rules of a casino game and practice how to play it. You can do that at Pit 7 next to Levels from 1PM to 2PM daily.
This is an amazing opportunity for all new visitors and in addition they will receive two coupons for $5 which can be used to test the casino game knowledge into reality.
Both types of baccarat at Rivers Casino (mini and midi) allow players to take advantage of the side bet called Dragon Bonus. You can do that simultaneously when you place your regular bet. The higher win margin, the higher the payout.
Casino table poker
Rivers Casino PA offers four table poker games with huge jackpots:
- Crazy 4 Poker
- Four card poker
- Let It Ride
- Mississippi stud
If you have a five-card Straight Flush, you will receive 10% of the jackpot. The rest of the jackpot goes for the player who has a five-card Royal Flush. There are also flat payouts for other good hands.
Blackjack is among the most popular table games at Rivers Casino PA because it has a very low house edge. If you want to win at blackjack, you have to rely on both fate and your skills, and have a basic playing strategy.
Have in mind that PGCB has set certain rules for playing blackjack within the state of Pennsylvania. If you are not familiar with them, you can read them below:
- Blackjack pays 3:2
- Dealer stands on soft 17
- Doubling down after splits
- Doubling down permitted on any of the two cards
- Late surrender
- Splits up to three hands with the exception of aces
Each PA casino is allowed to include one or more additional side bets for higher house edge. At Rivers Casino this optional side bet is called Blazing 7s.
The bet amount for Blazing 7s is constant – it’s always $5 no matter how much you initially bet. To win this side bet at least one of the first three cards that you are dealt must be a seven. The more sevens you have, the higher your winnings are.
In case you have 3 suited or colored sevens, you will take advantage of the highest payouts. For example, if you have 3 sevens with the same color but different suits, you will receive 10% of the jackpot. If all 3 cards are identical sevens, you will get the whole jackpot!
In a situation where you are dealt a third card and go above 21, you will lose your regular bet. But don’t worry, your Blazing 7s will remain the same no matter the outcome.
These are the payouts for the different combinations of Blazing 7s:
- One seven – 2 for 1
- Two sevens – 25 for 1
- Any three sevens – 200 for 1
- Three colored sevens – 10% of the jackpot
- Three suited sevens – 100% of the jackpot
Rivers Casino Poker Room PA provides the following games:
- H.O.R.S.E. (offered on demand)
- Limit and no-limit hold ‘em
- Omaha hi-lo
- Pot-limit Omaha
- Seven card stud (offered on demand)
The Rivers Casino poker room attracts many patrons thanks to the following features:
- Bad beat jackpot
- High hand
- Regular and other scheduled tournaments
- Splash pot promotions
Players who use Apple or Android smart devices can download the mobile app Bravo and get regular updates for poker games, promo offers, tournaments and jackpots.
While being in the poker room you can order beverages and appetizers. If you play a cash game, you will receive comps worth of $1 per hour.
Rush Rewards Program at Rivers Casino
The loyalty program for frequent players at Rivers Casino is called Rush Rewards. Every new visitor can get a rewards card from the Rush Rewards Player’s Club – it’s completely free!
The program is based on the idea that the more you play, the more you get back in the form of prizes. During play you collect points which can be exchanged for exclusive promotions, comps, giveaways and more.
Using the Rush Rewards card is very simple: you should place it in the slot machine before the start of the game or give it to the dealer of the table game you’ve chosen to play. When you collect enough points you can redeem them for beverages, food, entries in giveaways, free play and more.
You can use the number and PIN of your Rush Rewards card to log into the online platform where you can check your account and see how many points you’ve collected so far.
Tiers of the Rush Rewards Program
There are three tiers of the Rivers Casino loyalty program:
- Rush – from 0 to 499 points
- Preferred – from 500 to 1,499 points
- Signature – 1,500 points and above
The tier membership level is determined every six months. Have in mind that all points which are left unused will expire after a period of six months.
Here are the privileges for all members:
- A special promotion for the member’s birthday
- Access to giveaways
- Discounted rates on Norwegian Cruise Line cruises and at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas
- Food offers
- Free check cashing
- Free play
All members who are at Preferred and Signature tier level receive the following benefits:
- Complimentary annual Norwegian Line cruise
- Complimentary room at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas with free play
- Entry multipliers for certain drawings
- Invitations to exclusive events
- Priority gift pick up
- Priority line at Rush Rewards
- Quarterly newsletter
- Tier Club access
Besides the benefits mentioned above, the members of the Signature tier level will also receive the following:
- 25% discount at buffet and gift shop
- Access to the 446 VIP Lounge
- Free valet parking (excluding game days and special events)
- Personal host
- Priority lines at Gift Giveaway Center, Player’s Club, buffet, and casino cashier
- Priority seating at buffet and Andrew’s Steak & Seafood
- Special offer with United Airlines
Rivers Casino holds lots of advantages and is considered one of the best casinos in Pennsylvania. There are still several things for improvement such as hotel rooms for the guests. But for now the casino compensates this with special discounts for the hotels located nearby.
Have in mind that Rivers Casino is a place to go gambling rather than entertaining. If you want to spend an exciting night and party a lot, it’s just not the right place to do that.
Rivers Casino is considered to be low-key casino because it offers good food at affordable prices, $5 blackjack, craps and roulette, $3 drinks when it’s Happy Hour.
Some disadvantages that people complain about on TripAdvisor include the unpleasant smoke smell, the tight slot payouts and the high prices for a parking spot when it’s game day for the Steelers or the Pirates.
However, Rivers Casino remains a great choice for gamblers because it offers great value for money, vast selection of casino games, interesting promotions, delicious food and low stakes tables.