docbrock
docbrock
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August 1st, 2016 at 6:54:46 PM permalink
Hi everyone,

A few months ago I emailed the Wizard to make him aware of some eastern PA casinos that spread Pai Gow Tiles, and he added them to the "where to play" section of his site. After spending about a year in New Jersey, I finally found myself back up in Northeast PA and played at the three area casinos: Sands Bethlehem, Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, and Mount Airy. I wanted to inform everyone with just a few updates in terms of where to play in the area for folks who like the game.

I went to Mount Airy and spoke with some of the floor supervisors and they confirmed that, while they still have two tiles tables in a corner of what used to be branded as an Asian room, the game, in their estimation, was open only about once a month or so. Also, they've rebranded the room from an Asian room - "Dragon Palace" - to a "High Limit Room", which spreads Baccarat, high limit BJ, in addition to a $25 minimum Pai Gow Poker game.

Mount Airy's a smaller casino and the supervisors and dealers are really decent and kind, and they told me that they'd always be agreeable to opening a game if a person were to call ahead of time, and specifically ahead of time enough that they could get a dealer, open the table, etc. Apart from that, though, they said the Tiles game was only rarely open anymore. When it is, the minimum is $25.

Mohegan Sun, outside of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, has two Tiles tables as well, but at least one is generally open all the time. In my experience, during off hours, they'll spread the game for a $15 minimum but they take the liberty of upping the minimum to $25 as demand starts to rise, say, as afternoon turns into night on a Friday or Saturday. They will, though, 'grandfather' the $15 players in and allow them to bet as little as $15 despite the table minimum being posted at $25. If they leave and come back, though, they're subject to the $25 minimum as is everyone else. Table max is 3k, I believe, for either minimum.

I've found that, if I go during off hours, I'll often be at the table playing heads-up with the dealer; if I go at in-demand times, the table will often be full with, in some cases, some folks possibly waiting for a seat. Also, very nice dealers and floorpeople there as well.

Sands Bethlehem, though, has by far and away the largest Pai Gow scene that I've seen among any of the casinos in eastern PA and even AC. On midweek nights you'll see four full tables running in their eight-game pit, and on weekend nights all eight tables are routinely full with folks milling about, watching games and also searching for seats. Interestingly, the lowest-minimum tables, $25, tend to have just 1k maximums. At least one $25 game is virtually always available, and typically there's more than one. But also, the house will spread games with $50 and $100 minimums and at the most, once, I've seen a $200 minimum table. I'd imagine the table maxes are higher at those games than the 1k offered at the $25 tables, but I'm not sure. Smoking and non-smoking tables are available, and all games offer the "Pair Fortunes" side bet which was analyzed by the Wizard a few years ago (if you do a search, you can find it).

As I had initially said in my original email, I know its a small contribution to just one section of an incredibly diverse and informative site but if any of it is relevant to you, I hope it proves useful.

Cheers,

BB
PapaChubby
PapaChubby
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August 3rd, 2016 at 8:22:44 PM permalink
Thanks for the information!
beachbumbabs
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beachbumbabs
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August 3rd, 2016 at 10:59:23 PM permalink
Quote: docbrock

Hi everyone,

A few months ago I emailed the Wizard to make him aware of some eastern PA casinos that spread Pai Gow Tiles, and he added them to the "where to play" section of his site. After spending about a year in New Jersey, I finally found myself back up in Northeast PA and played at the three area casinos: Sands Bethlehem, Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs, and Mount Airy. I wanted to inform everyone with just a few updates in terms of where to play in the area for folks who like the game.

I went to Mount Airy and spoke with some of the floor supervisors and they confirmed that, while they still have two tiles tables in a corner of what used to be branded as an Asian room, the game, in their estimation, was open only about once a month or so. Also, they've rebranded the room from an Asian room - "Dragon Palace" - to a "High Limit Room", which spreads Baccarat, high limit BJ, in addition to a $25 minimum Pai Gow Poker game.

Mount Airy's a smaller casino and the supervisors and dealers are really decent and kind, and they told me that they'd always be agreeable to opening a game if a person were to call ahead of time, and specifically ahead of time enough that they could get a dealer, open the table, etc. Apart from that, though, they said the Tiles game was only rarely open anymore. When it is, the minimum is $25.

Mohegan Sun, outside of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, has two Tiles tables as well, but at least one is generally open all the time. In my experience, during off hours, they'll spread the game for a $15 minimum but they take the liberty of upping the minimum to $25 as demand starts to rise, say, as afternoon turns into night on a Friday or Saturday. They will, though, 'grandfather' the $15 players in and allow them to bet as little as $15 despite the table minimum being posted at $25. If they leave and come back, though, they're subject to the $25 minimum as is everyone else. Table max is 3k, I believe, for either minimum.

I've found that, if I go during off hours, I'll often be at the table playing heads-up with the dealer; if I go at in-demand times, the table will often be full with, in some cases, some folks possibly waiting for a seat. Also, very nice dealers and floorpeople there as well.

Sands Bethlehem, though, has by far and away the largest Pai Gow scene that I've seen among any of the casinos in eastern PA and even AC. On midweek nights you'll see four full tables running in their eight-game pit, and on weekend nights all eight tables are routinely full with folks milling about, watching games and also searching for seats. Interestingly, the lowest-minimum tables, $25, tend to have just 1k maximums. At least one $25 game is virtually always available, and typically there's more than one. But also, the house will spread games with $50 and $100 minimums and at the most, once, I've seen a $200 minimum table. I'd imagine the table maxes are higher at those games than the 1k offered at the $25 tables, but I'm not sure. Smoking and non-smoking tables are available, and all games offer the "Pair Fortunes" side bet which was analyzed by the Wizard a few years ago (if you do a search, you can find it).

As I had initially said in my original email, I know its a small contribution to just one section of an incredibly diverse and informative site but if any of it is relevant to you, I hope it proves useful.

Cheers,

BB



Very useful, BB! Thanks for taking the time.

I would not have guessed it would be that popular up there. Very cool.
If the House lost every hand, they wouldn't deal the game.
Wizard
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Wizard
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August 4th, 2016 at 11:26:00 AM permalink
Thanks for the information. I didn't know there was another Mohegan Sun in PA. If my list on Wizard of Odds is in any way out of date, can I trouble you for the executive summary of changes that need to be made?

Thank you.
It's not whether you win or lose; it's whether or not you had a good bet.
Mosca
Mosca
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August 4th, 2016 at 1:33:13 PM permalink
Sands gets buses from Chinatown, hence the popularity of tiles.

I've played tiles at Mohegan Pocono, the dealers are accurate and very knowledgeable. I just don't play often enough to stay sharp at the game, though. And the only tables are in the smoking section, and I'm a non smoker who needs to avoid second hand smoke for health reasons (heart attack and cancer survivor).

Mohegan Pocono is small, but very friendly. Slot odds are terrible, and non-blackjack/non craps table games use the most commoon pay tables and have all the side bets available. But the blackjack rules are set by PA law. Players tend to be locals and are friendly and open, generally speaking. the place is small enough that if you go there as infrequently as once a month you can get to know dealers, pit people, and other players by first name. If you want to, anyhow.
NO KILL I
Mosca
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August 4th, 2016 at 1:38:20 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

Thanks for the information. I didn't know there was another Mohegan Sun in PA. If my list on Wizard of Odds is in any way out of date, can I trouble you for the executive summary of changes that need to be made?

Thank you.



Wizard, where is that list? The only one I could find is at Latest Casino Bonuses, and Mohegan Sun Pocono Downs is there.
NO KILL I
DJTeddyBear
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August 5th, 2016 at 6:28:03 AM permalink
Quote: Mosca

Wizard, where is that list?

I'd like to know too.

The best I found is:
http://wizardofvegas.com/hotels/
I invented a few casino games. Info: http://www.DaveMillerGaming.com/ 覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧覧 Superstitions are silly, childish, irrational rituals, born out of fear of the unknown. But how much does it cost to knock on wood? 😁
docbrock
docbrock
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August 11th, 2016 at 5:34:22 PM permalink
Hi everyone,

The list of 'Where to Play' is here on the Wizard's site. If you scroll down all the way to almost the bottom of the page, you can find it right above the link to the simulator.

When I first emailed the Wizard, I had recently been to many of the southeastern PA casinos in or close to Philly, so I could confirm that Parx, Valley Forge, and Sugar House all spread the game at the time. Since I haven't been to any of those for over a year, though, I have no idea as to what, or even if, changes have been made to any of those casinos' Tiles games.

I'm with you 100%, Mosca, on your comments on Mohegan (PA), and Wizard yep, there's a Mohegan in Northeast PA. Mosca pretty much had it down. The main casino floor is basically a big circle with a center bar in the middle, and then, surrounding the main floor, there's a larger concentric circle that's a carpeted walkway and on the other side of the walkway are stores and restaurants, mostly.

The main floor is split pretty much in half down the middle into a non-smoking and a smoking side, with both slots and table games available on each side. As Mosca said though, Tiles is only spread on the smoking side, so it's not the friendliest environment for folks with medical conditions that could be aggravated by that or even just folks who prefer to try to minimize their exposure if they can.

As far as I understand it, the Mohegan in PA and the Mohegan in CT are owned by the same company, and then that company also manages, but doesn't own, Resorts in AC. The same players cards, comp dollars and slot dollars are usable in all three casinos.

The PA Mohegan changed its name from "Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs" to "Mohegan Sun Pocono", and it's also referred to as 'Mohegan Pocono' as a shorthand.

Sands, again, has a very active Tiles scene and, I was told, is aggressive with its Far East marketing and consequently draws a player base from many surrounding areas, including NYC. I was playing poker a few months ago in AC with someone who lived in NYC and they said that, depending upon where you live in the city, Sands can be closer, by time, than Atlantic City. And that holds equally true whether folks are traveling by bus or by car, of course.

As far as AC goes, Revel, Showboat and Trump Plaza have shut down (casino-wise at least) and the latest I've heard is that Taj still plans to close on/after/around Labor Day. Golden Nugget (which used to be Trump Marina) doesn't spread Tiles anymore, and I don't believe that Harrah's AC does either, though I'm not entirely sure about that.

The casinos in AC that still do spread the game are, as far as I know, Borgata, Tropicana ('Trop'), Caesars, Resorts and Taj. (And again, Taj for the time being). Table limits tend to be $25 and $3k pretty much across the board with the exception of Borgata, which uses yellow $20 chips in its Asian pit and offers table limits of $20 and $10k.

This is just my opinion, but I think the yellow cheques at Borgata are really cool because you can easily bet in $20 increments and not worry about dealing with quarters (25-cent pieces) when you pay the 5% commission. That may just be me, but I just don't like dealing with loose change if I can avoid it. Same applies to Pai Gow Poker at Borgata -- they have maybe 5 or 6 tables, by a rough estimate, and they use the $20 cheques as well. At Tiles, at least, Borgata doesn't allow players to prepay commissions though.

So for your list, Wizard, the most accurate I can be for the time being is:

Atlantic City: Borgata, Tropicana, Caesars, and Resorts (I don't know whether you'd want to list Taj, considering the possible looming closure, but they do still spread a game as of right now), and

Pennsylvania: Sands Bethlehem, Mohegan Sun Pocono, Mount Airy Casino (rarely open), Parx Casino (unconfirmed), Sugar House Casino (unconfirmed) and Valley Forge Casino (unconfirmed).

And lastly, I can only speak to the houses in eastern PA, as I've never visited any of the ones in the middle or western parts of the state.

Cheers, and kind regards,

BB
docbrock
docbrock
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August 11th, 2016 at 5:44:23 PM permalink
Sorry, I can't post a link because it says I need to hit 20 posts to do it, but you can find the 'Where to Play' list if you click

Odds & Strategies > Asian Games > Pai Gow Tiles

and then scroll down.

Cheers

BB

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