Updated: 3/27/17Harrah's Philadelphia Casino & Racetrack
(click any image to enlarge)
With all the ambience of an airplane hangar, Harrah's Philadelphia Casino & Racetrack (formerly Harrah's Chester) still packs 'em in! You'll also find some of the nicest and friendliest employees to be found in a casino (or any large operation – think Target or Walmart). All employees – no matter what their jobs – seem to be honestly concerned that you have a great time, even to the point of asking if their fellow employees treated you well.
Click here to view the 2017 schedule.
The casino is very large and may appear extremely crowded when you walk in. However, take a few extra steps to walk toward the other end, and you will find it's much less crowded.
While there is the usual array of slots and video poker, along with electronic versions of blackjack with a "dealer" on a video screen interacting with players and "dealing" cards, there also is "live" table gaming.
Alcoholic beverages on the floor (but not the Diamond Lounge) are complimentary (see below), and there also are several complimentary self-serve soft drink dispensers located throughout the casino, but they are frequently out of service – either the beverages are depleted or the icemaker is broken. Pennsylvania law requires that the casino stop serving alcohol at 2 a.m. Service begins again at 7 a.m. Monday through Saturday and on Sunday at 11 a.m.
The casino is equipped with Caesars proprietary Total Touch system that allows customers to order drinks, redeem free play, check their Total Rewards account balances, and receive real-time offers based on play.
You can charge your cellphone for free if you have a Total Rewards card. Look for the charging stations on the casino floor. You can also charge your phone at certain slot machines in the High Limit area.
To claim any or all of your five annual Seven Stars $100 Celebration Dinner vouchers at Harrah's Philadelphia, you'll have to go to the Total Rewards Center. While you can print your vouchers at any time, try to wait until the day you're going to use the voucher(s). Even though a lost or damaged voucher can be replaced, it can be time-consuming and you might not be able to get it on the day you want to use it. The vouchers are good at The Cove, Guy Fieri's and Mien. (Diamond cardholders, follow the same procedure for your annual $100 Celebration Dinner.)
Cove Steakhouse & Raw Bar, the casino's full-service "fine dining" restaurant which is open only Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings, to The Market. The Market, open daily from 11 a.m. to 3 a.m., offers breakfast, lunch, dinner and late-night dining options, featuring salads, pizzas, Italian-style deli sandwiches, baked pastas, panini and other made-to-order specialties. Additionally, The Market offers guests a selection of house-made soups, yogurt parfaits, fresh fruit and juices. Reward Credits are accepted 1:1 and Seven Stars cardholders get a 10 percent discount.
Guy Fieri's Philly Kitchen + Bar. Philly Kitchen + Bar "offers guests a taste of Fieri's signature cuisine, featuring daring flavors and unique twists on traditional dishes." The restaurant is open for lunch, dinner and late-night dining, offering a variety of burgers, wings, tacos, small bites and shareable items, as well as a diverse menu of adult beverages. Reward Credits are accepted on a 1:1 basis and Seven Stars cardholders get a 10 percent discount. Be sure to ask for the discount after you review your check, or you risk a long wait getting your check adjusted. It's supposed to be automatic, but I've yet to get the discount without asking after the fact.
On the second floor Philly Steak Shack (formerly Tony Luke's which was formerly Derby Burger Bar which was formerly Winning Streaks) serves hoagies, cheesesteaks, hot dogs, salads and other casual dining fare. A Krispy Kreme is located next door.
In addition, you can enjoy a beer or cocktail at The Copper Mug.
Just off the casino floor next to the high limit slots area there's also a small Asian restaurant, Mien.
Entertainment - C-Bar – formerly Stir – has entertainment on a regular basis (musicians, singers, dancers, DJs). Harrah's Event Center hosts a lot of "vintage" bands and musicians like Tony Orlando and Eddie Money, as well as comedians and "specialty shows" like John Edwards. Temptations Buffet is closed and is now a venue called The Block Entertainment Center.
- Self-parking in an adjacent six-floor garage is complimentary for all guests (see more on this below), but complimentary valet parking is available for Seven Stars, Diamond and Platinum cardholders. [Look for Randi; he has been handling valet since the casino opened.] Note that, after presenting your claim check to the valet cashier, you retrieve your car toward the rear of the building in an enclosed underground area.
Special Seven Stars Benefits*
Once each year during racing season you can get a horse race named after you or someone you designate. Following the race, you and your guest(s) get a photo taken with the winning horse, and, optionally, a tour of the paddock area. In addition, you get a $25 credit to bet on any race[s] and a $125 food credit – see Insider Tip, left.
Seven Stars cardholders may make unlimited daily visits to the Diamond Lounge (see below); Diamond members (with one guest) are limited to one visit per day. In addition, Seven Stars cardholders have reserved tables and may request a special dessert from their server.
The Bar At The Block. Seven Stars cardholders and one guest may enjoy complimentary cocktails and hors d'oeuvre. There is a drawing at 6:15; five of the Seven Stars cardholders present each win $100 in free slot play. (Some weeks additional free play is given away.)
While there is a five percent check-cashing fee, it's waived for Seven Stars cardholders and Diamond cardholders who earned 80,000 tier credits, but the fee is returned in the form of free play.
Seven Stars cardholders get a 10 percent discount on menu items at The Cove, Mien, Caffe Napoli Express and Guy Fieri's.
There is dedicated parking on the third level; use your player's card to open the gate, but, frankly, if space is available, parking on the fourth level is really more convenient because you can walk right into the casino level. Alternatively, parking on the fifth level requires only a short ride on an escalator to get into the casino.
Other benefits include dedicated Seven Stars windows at the cashier, a complimentary copy of the daily Racing Form, and complimentary and priority valet service.
Seven Stars Lounge
There is no Seven Stars Lounge, but a spacious Diamond Lounge overlooks the casino floor on one side and the racetrack/river on the other. Look for the escalator near the C-Bar in the middle of the casino. (There also is access by elevator.) Seven Stars cardholders may make unlimited daily visits. (Diamond cardholders and a guest may visit only once per day, or pay 10 comp dollars per person for a second admittance.)
Harrah's Diamond Lounge has a large bar, and lots of seating, but only soft drinks, coffee and water are complimentary. While alcoholic beverages are complimentary in the casino, there is a charge in the lounge, e.g., $2 for a glass of house wine. Food service consists of a selection of fruit, a hot entree, a hot vegetable and starch, soup, cookies, a couple cold salads, and trays of cold sandwiches. In addition, there is a self-serve soft ice cream machine and a coffee bar.
The Lounge is open Sundays through Thursdays from 3 to 9 p.m., and Fridays and Saturdays from 3 to 10 p.m. Food service ends at 9:30 on Fridays and Saturdays, and at 8:30 all other days. Hours are always subject to change, so check first.
Total Rewards Center
The Total Rewards Center is open Mondays through Thursdays from noon to 1 a.m., and Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 1 a.m.
Should You Choose This For Your Annual Retreat?
It's an option, but since there is no hotel a host may be able to arrange accommodations at the nearby Wyndham or Springhill Suites. Unless you have your own transportation, you'll have to depend on the hotel's van service. With Atlantic City just a little more than hour away, that would be your nearest alternative.
Also, note that casinos without hotels are under no obligation to host your annual retreat, a Diamond Aspiration trip, or even provide you with a complimentary hotel room during any visit.
*subject to change, revision or cancellation
Gambling problem? Seven Stars Insider® promotes responsible gambling. Call 1-800-GAMBLER.
Neither Seven Stars Insider nor http://www.sevenstarsinsider.com is affiliated in any way with Caesars License Company, LLC or Total Rewards®.