Team of Former Rivals Join Forces at Live! Casino Pittsburgh, Soft Opening Nov. 17

Former Western PA gaming execs from Rivers Casino and the Meadows join forces to help run Live! Pittsburgh, which opens to the public later this month.

When Live! Casino Pittsburgh formally opens the 100,000-square-foot facility later this month, a team of former rivals will be at the helm.

Craig Clark was most recently president of Hard Rock Ottawa, which is owned jointly by the Seminole Tribe and the Rideau Carleton Raceway. Before that, he was the general manager of Rivers Casino Pittsburgh. Clark is a certified public accountant, coming to Live!’s new $150 million facility as the director of finance.

Clark joins General Manager Sean Sullivan, who previously served as the GM of the Meadows Racetrack & Casino, a Penn National Gaming facility in Western PA.

Plenty of Western PA Experience at Live!

Clark served seven years at Rivers Pittsburgh, ending in 2018, and this move returns him to Western PA after just two years in Ottawa. At Live! Pittsburgh, Clark is responsible for the finance department, which includes accounting, analytics, finance, scheduling, income and revenue audit, purchasing, warehousing, count rooms and the casino cage.

Clark understands the Western Pennsylvania market well and has more than 26 years of diversified experience in the casino industry. In addition to Rivers and Hard Rock, he’s been an executive at Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula, California, and Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, New York.

Along the way, he’s developed local partnerships with a community college to train casino dealers.

He has previously said his philosophy is to design programs around initiatives, provide opportunities and outlets for employees, and enhance the customer experience.

He and Sullivan have a combined 20 years of experience in the Western PA region. Sullivan was named the general manager for Live! Casino back in February.

Live! Pittsburgh opening details

The forthcoming property is in a rehabbed mall space in Westmoreland County and is technically a satellite mini-casino. The property is a project of the Cordish Companies, which is also developing a full-size Live! casino in South Philadelphia, adjacent to the city’s sports stadiums. Joe Billhimer oversees both properties as the Cordish Gaming Group‘s executive vice president.

Live! Casino Pittsburgh is scheduled to open on Nov. 24. There is a media preview on Nov. 12 without the public present. A ribbon-cutting follows Nov. 17, with test-run charity nights for invited guests. The formal opening for the public at large is at 6 p.m. on the 24th.

The location is approximately 30 miles from downtown Pittsburgh, directly off Route 30. Live! features 750 slots and approximately 30 live-action table games, plus a FanDuel Sportsbook. Live! has already launched an online casino, PlayLive! but an online sportsbook is still to come. Live! Philadelphia should open in early 2021.

Live! plans restaurant and bar experience

Live! plans nationally recognized restaurants and live entertainment venues, including Sports & Social Steel City, a sports restaurant, gaming venue and social lounge.

Guy Fieri, an Emmy-award winning chef, restaurateur, New York Times best-selling author and television personality, will open the American Kitchen + Bar in the facility.

Live! Casino is owned and managed by Stadium Casino Westmoreland RE LLC, an affiliate of the Cordish Companies of Baltimore.

Country-themed PBR bar coming next year

Next year, the facility will add the Professional Bull Rider Country BarPBR Pittsburgh‘s newest location — during the second phase of openings.

PBR will be located on the second floor of the facility and feature the area’s only professionally endorsed mechanical riding bull, private VIP booths and the best in country music.

“We want people to have fun at Live! Casino, and PBR Pittsburgh is going to make sure they do,” said Sullivan. “It’s going to be a remarkable venue. Keeping the safety of our guests top of mind, we can’t wait to welcome everyone to PBR for a first-class entertainment experience when it opens next year.”

Live! Casino is now hiring for positions at PBR Pittsburgh. For complete information and job listings, visit www.workatlive.com.

Lead image via Live! Pittsburgh.

Gearing Up, Live! Casino Philadelphia Begins Rolling in Slots and Table Games

The grand opening is months away, but Live! Casino Philadelphia is readying the gaming floor, installing state-of-the-art slot machines and table games.

While Live! Casino Philadelphia doesn’t have a firm opening date yet in 2021, the Stadium District facility is already installing slots and electronic table games.

Deliveries and installations began this week. Eventually, there will be more than 2,200 state-of-the-art slot machines and electronic table games at the South Philadelphia location at 900 Packer Avenue.

The machines will blend modern titles with slot classics like Lightening Links, Wheel of Fortune, Hot Shots and a full line of Quick Hits and progressives.

Installation hailed as a Live! Casino Philadelphia milestone

Joe Billhimer, executive vice president of Cordish Gaming Group, and Mario Maesano, the senior vice president of marketing for Live!, hailed the slot delivery as a milestone toward the opening.

Live! already has an online casino

And the company debuted its PlayLive! online casino in August, joining PA’s healthy online casino market.

At the other end of PA, the company has announced the opening of Live! Casino Pittsburgh for Nov. 24. The mini-casino is in a rehabbed vacant mall space.

Live! in the eastern part of PA adjoins the Philadelphia Sports Complex, which drew 8.5 million visitors a year pre-COVID-19. The casino is located directly off I-76 and I-95.

Philly Live! details

The Cordish project will also include:

  • More than 1.5 million square feet of gaming, hotel, dining and entertainment space
  • More than 150 live-action table games, including poker
  • A FanDuel sportsbook
  • An upscale 12-story hotel with more than 200 rooms
  • A parking garage

Live! partners with local food vendors

The project is playing up local connections with food purveyors:

  • Lorenzo and Sons Pizza, a South Philadelphia staple since 1970 and one of the 101 best pizzas in America as rated by The Daily Meal.
  • Sang Kee Noodle Bar & Kitchen, a collaboration between the landmark Chinatown restaurant owners Sang Kee Peking Duck House and Strother Enterprises.
  • Termini Brothers, a beloved South Philadelphia bakery with a 99-year history, that will serve cannolis, cookies and cakes.

Cordish already in Philly

While Cordish is new to gaming in PA, the company has a track record elsewhere.

And Cordish also has an established presence in Philly: It is a part of Xfinity Live! near the stadiums.

Live! is expected to provide more than 2,000 permanent jobs, as well as about 3,000 indirect jobs.

Photos via Cordish/Live! Philadelphia.