The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has finally awarded Philly's second casino license, reports Philly.com, and the winning proposal is Live Hotel and Casino at the Sports Complex in South Philly. Pending appeals and any other snags, the new casino will replace a Holiday Inn on Packer Avenue.
Live had already been rumored to be the frontrunner in the race for the gaming license. Among other proposals, Live won out over the Provence, developer Bart Blatstein's higher-end concept targeting the former Inquirer building on North Broad. Chefs Tom Colicchio (of Craft restaurants and Top Chef fame) and Andrew Carmellini (of NYC's the Dutch and others) had previously signed onto the now-failed Provence proposal. (Although, as you may recall, Marc Vetri had already sworn to talk them out of it, anyway.)
The Live proposal has not yet announced any specific names or restaurants, but it's unlikely that dining will be a draw to the complex. They project six restaurants on the premises, "from high-end options to a modern diner concept, a food court, and a celebrity chef concept." A glance at the existing properties owned and operated by the involved parties paints a bland picture: Greenwood Racing owns Parx Casino in Bensalem, whose dining highlights include a Chickie's and Pete's and an outpost of Sangkee. Cordish Companies, which owns Xfinity Live, also operates Maryland Live Casino, which counts a Cheesecake Factory and a Bobby's Burger Palace among its ranks.