Live! Casino and Hotel Philadelphia clears latest legal hurdle

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Pennsylvania’s Gaming Board has recently voted in favour of a proposed hotel and casino located in South Philly. The hotel-casino duplex has been in the works for the past four years now but it yet to open its doors to its first stream of clients.

According to NBC10, the board ruled in favour of the Live! Casino and Hotel Philadelphia in an impressive 7-0 vote after two parties filed a petition challenging its legal ownership rules. The lawsuit, which was filed by one SugarHouse Associates and Market East Casino, directed that one of the main beneficiaries of the upcoming casino complex, Bob a.k.a Watche Manoukin was set to acquire an ownership interest that exceeds the recommended controlling limit of 33.3%. As it stands, Watche ‘Bob’ Manoukin owns about 85% stake in the lavish Parx Casino situated in Bensalem. Nonetheless, the had committed to transfer over $34 million interest in the proposed South Philly project as a trust fund for his sons.

On the contrary, after a detailed and thorough analysis, the Gaming Board has decided that the financial structure in question was legit and in accordance with the law. And as much as an appeal ( against this ruling ) could still be filed within the next 30 days, the project has already received a thumb ups sign from the board for the construction to begin. The final approval from the Philadelphia’s State Gaming Board remains valid unless an appeal is filed.

The casino-hotel complex has been under construction for close to four years now. The numerous legal tussles surrounding it can be said to be one the biggest reasons why the construction of the entertainment duplex has dragged on for ages now. For instance, in 2014, the Pennsylvania Gaming and Betting Control had to award Live! Philadelphia a second casino license just to clear the air on the legality of its development and construction. The following year, the casino received a comprehensive approval from the Philadelphia City Planning and Construction Commission to proceed with the development. This clean bill of health was then ascertained by the zoning and construction permits that the hotel was later granted.

By the time of completion, it’s expected to cost the developers over USD 600 million to ultimately develop and finalize the complex. What’s more, the 220-room hotel will also host a state-of-the-art live casino in it. It is yet to be seen whether the management will integrate an online betting system to the already humongous super structure.

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