Chester casino fighting its way into region's gambling market

May 28, 2012 10:33 AM

The Harrah’s casino in the struggling Philadelphia suburb of Chester isn’t alone anymore - and it’s fighting to make its way in the region’s crowded gambling market.

Five years ago, Harrah’s Chester Casino & Racetrack opened as the third casino in Pennsylvania. It was a novelty that pulled in Philadelphia-area gamblers thrilled not to have to drive to Atlantic City, N.J.

Now, Pennsylvania has 11 casinos, 4 of them in the Philadelphia area. Harrah’s slots business is hurting and it’s scrambling to make changes and fighting for market share.

The casino is rebranding itself as Harrah’s Philadelphia and attempting to draw in more gamblers from farther away. It’s also working on upgrading its food and entertainment offerings and switching out games more often.

General Manager Ron Baumann says those changes come as the casino plans for growth this year.