The house always wins — but sometimes it doesn’t win quite as much.
That appears to be the case at Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem, the in-the-process-of-being-sold gambling complex that has consistently reported lower revenue this year than it did in 2017.
The latest example came Monday, when the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board released figures that showed Sands Bethlehem’s slot machine revenue totaled $22.5 million in November, a 6.5 percent decline from $24.1 million a year ago.
The result trailed perpetual slots king Parx Casino in Bucks County and Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh — marking the first time Sands has relinquished its grasp on second place to Rivers since February 2015.
Sands has been down at the slots in seven of 11 months this year. Sands remains the best in the state — but by a slimming margin.
In October, Sands reported table games revenue of $16.1 million, down nearly 16 percent from about $19.2 million a year earlier.
Meanwhile, second-place Parx was up 9 percent to $15 million — a year earlier, Parx trailed Sands by $5.4 million.
While the state hasn’t yet reported table games revenue for November, Sands has been down at the tables seven out of 10 months this year.
Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem is still Pennsylvania’s table games king, but in recent months its stranglehold on the throne doesn’t seem quite as firm.
For instance, in May, Sands Bethlehem generated $19.6 million in table games revenue, the 15th-highest monthly total in the casino’s history but...
The casino’s parent company, Las Vegas Sands Corp., doesn’t discuss monthly gambling figures or, for that matter, its Bethlehem property much at all, being more focused on its megaresorts in Macau and Singapore.
The state, meanwhile, doesn’t see a concrete reason but points out that 2017 was a particularly good year for Sands Bethlehem.