Live! Casino Names Gaming Vet Mario Maesano to Oversee Marketing in Philly

Posted on August 12, 2020 - Last Updated on August 20, 2020

Live! Casino & Hotel Philadelphia continues to hire for its early 2021 opening, appointing Mario Maesano as senior vice president of marketing.

Maesano now leads the overall development of marketing initiatives meant to make the facility a world-class gaming, dining and entertainment destination.

Live! Casino has a premier location in Philly

Live! is in the South Philadelphia Stadium Entertainment District, adjacent to sports teams and major highways.

Cordish Companies, the parent company of Live!, had originally hoped to open the site before the turn of the year, but a construction delay due to virus restrictions pushed that back. Work resumed in early May, but an exact opening date in 2021 has not been announced.

A marketing vet at the helm for Philly Live!

Maesano’s responsibilities include the execution of all Live! branded marketing programs, loyalty marketing, creative development, traditional and social media, sponsorships, special events and promotions, entertainment, guest services, player development and group sales.

Image courtesy of Live! Casino

Maesano is a veteran gaming executive. He has more than 30 years of experience.

A South Jersey native, Maesano began his gaming career in 1991 at Resorts International in Atlantic City.

He joined Ameristar Casino in 1995. Then came an 11-year tenure with Pinnacle Entertainment, Inc., with stints in Louisiana and St. Louis. He also was the senior vice president of marketing for Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in AC.

He began with Live! in 2011, opening the first of Cordish’s casinos branded Live! in Maryland.

He also worked on The Cordish Companies’ corporate development team, focused on corporate and international expansion and development, including the Live! location in Philadelphia and a Live! mini-casino near Pittsburgh.

Live! team is bullish on the PA gaming market

The mini-casino should open this year, despite the construction delay caused by the virus shutdown.

Meanwhile, Live! soft-launched an online casino just this week in PA and should have an online sportsbook sometime in September. That’s the same month Penn National Gaming now hopes to offer its delayed mobile gambling apps.

Plans to bid on another mini-casino license

Also, Live has boldly said it intends to bid on a newly available additional mini-casino license on Sept. 2 at the start of the monthly Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) meeting.

Sealed bids are being used because in-person meetings are on hold due to the virus. The minimum bid is $7.5 million.

The license became available when Mount Airy Casino was denied a license late last year.

Joe Billhimer, the executive vice president for Live! operations in PA, declined to name a location in a recent interview with PlayPennsylvania. However, a specific site is part of the bidding process that will take place in just a few weeks.

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Kevin Shelly

Kevin C. Shelly is an award-winning career journalist who has spent most of his career in South Jersey. He's the former assistant city editor of The Press of Atlantic City, where he covered the casino industry and Atlantic City government as a reporter. He was also an investigative, narrative enterprise, and features reporter for Gannett’s Courier-Post.

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