Sugarhouse Casino (PlaySugarhouse.com) is the latest NJ online casino to enter the fold, launching quietly in September 2016. It becomes the third online casino to make use of the Golden Nugget’s online gambling license, joining Golden Nugget Casino and Betfair Casino.
The online casino, which shares the same name as its brick and mortar counterpart located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, is operated by Rush Street Interactive NJ.
It launched with an impressive 227 titles, spread across online slots, video poker, and table games, as well as a free bonus bingo game.
SugarHouse may be entering a mature and saturated NJ online casino industry, but the combination of its stellar proprietary platform, creative take on bonuses, extensive game library, and ties to industry leading Golden Nugget, give the newcomer more than a fighting chance to establish a foothold in the market.
SugarHouse Online Casino Review
- Casino Bonus
- Game Selection
The newly-launched SugarHouse online casino operates under the Golden Nugget’s New Jersey online gambling license. With a healthy selection of online slots titles, a mobile app, and a unique, variable new player bonus, it is worth a look, especially for those who like their NJ casino bonuses to be the easy-to-clear type.
SugarHouse is operated by Rush Street Interactive, and is associated with the land-based casino of the same name located in Philadelphia, PA. Rush Street Gaming operates the Rivers Casino properties in Illinois and Pennsylvania.
PlaySugarHouse.com NJ signup bonus
Up to $20 free
SugarHouse offers a variable no deposit bonus. In order to qualify for this bonus, players must first register a verified account with the site.
Then, they’ll be whisked away to the site’s Prize Wheel screen, where they’ll receive one spin. New players are guaranteed to win at least $10 in bonus dollars, and as much as $20.
Bonus money is subject to a low 1x wagering requirement. Upon meeting these requirements, the funds are converted to cash, and can be withdrawn. Players that prefer to store their bonus money for a rainy day, will have that option, as SugarHouse has integrated a Bonus Bank as part of its online casino offering.
100 percent match on deposits up to $100
Players that use the promotional code 100MATCH when making a first deposit will receive a deposit match of 100 percent up to $100. In order to take full advantage of this offer, players are encouraged to deposit $100.
From the time of registration, players will have fourteen days to capitalize upon this offer. Like the no deposit bonus, the welcome bonus is subject to a low 1x turnover requirement on all games.
It’s up to players whether they want to activate the bonus immediately or bank it, but it’s worth noting that the bonus funds will expire if not activated and played through within 30 days.
SugarHouse online casino platform
SugarHouse Casino took a unique angle with its online casino platform, launching with a product that shares some similarities to a video game console lobby.
Despite all the added flash, the platform delivers when it comes to responsiveness and functionality.
SugarHouse Casino software
The SugarHouse Casino platform is powered by Rush Street Interactive. The operator acts as the online division of Rush Street Gaming, which itself owns and operates several land-based casinos, including SugarHouse Casino in Pennsylvania.
There are currently two primary ways to access the platform:
For players that prefer the full SugarHouse Casino experience, playing from a PC or a Mac will be their best bet.
The online casino is accessible via a number of modern browsers including Google Chrome, Mozilla FireFox, Internet Explorer, and Safari.
A compact version of the client is available for iOS and Android-powered mobile devices.
The Android version of the application can be accessed from the online casino site, while its iOS counterpart can be downloaded from either the online casino site or the iTunes store. Note, that in order to use the iOS version, your device must support iOS 8.4 or later.
Players must be physically located within the state of New Jersey to play real-money games on SugarHouse Casino.
Mobile play on SugarHouse Casino
The SugarHouse Casino mobile app is a strong, well-polished piece of software, supporting many of the same games, account management, and quality of life features found on the main online casino site.
From the application’s main menu, players can access promotions, their rewards status page, the help center (including live chat support), and the full cashier. They can also view and edit their account details and preferences.
Access to nearly all of this functionality is less than three clicks away from the casino lobby.
Speaking of the casino lobby, mobile game selection is an area where SugarHouse Casino really makes the grade. Unlike most NJ online casino mobile apps, that support a few dozen games, 84 of SugarHouse’s games have made the transition to mobile. And that’s just at launch.
Those who dread navigating long lists of games in search of their favorite titles are in luck, as the app features a variety of game filters, including ones that allow players to filter by game type and game provider. They can also sort games by one of five parameters.
And just as they can from the desktop client, players can try before they buy, thanks to demo mode.
For the most part, games run as smoothly on mobile as they do from the main site. However, there were a couple of instances where we did experience minor hangups.
Crashes, however, were not a persistent issue.
In short, the SugarHouse Casino mobile app comes closer than any NJ online casino app we’ve seen to emulating the full desktop experience.
SugarHouse Casino operates under the Golden Nugget AC online gambling license. Its entry into the NJ online casino arena brings the total number of casinos under the GN license up to three.
The land-based Golden Nugget is a relative newcomer to Atlantic City, at least in its present form.
In 2011, Landry’s Inc., which acts as the owner and operator of other Golden Nugget properties, purchased the Trump Marina. The struggling casino was renovated and rebranded as the Golden Nugget, reopening its doors to the masses in 2012.
The casino, which is located in the Marina District alongside Harrah’s and the Borgata, has since carved out a sizable niche in Atlantic City’s brick and mortar casino industry. But it’s in the online department that the Golden Nugget has really begun to shine.
When PlaySugarHouse.com entered the picture in September 2016, the Golden Nugget’s online division was already the top earner in the industry. Its presence will undoubtedly tip the scales even more in the operator’s direction.
The SugarHouse Casino platform is provided by Rush Street Interactive, an affiliate of Rush Street Gaming. The latter owns and operators the land-based SugarHouse Casino in Pennsylvania, as well as three other casinos in the northeastern US — including Rivers Casino.
Game selection at SugarHouse Casino
At launch, SugarHouse Casino came stocked with over 200 online slots, seven tables games and six video poker variants.
That immediately vaulted the casino past roughly two-thirds of existing NJ online casinos in terms of game library size.
In total, players can enjoy 227 games; a figure that will undoubtedly grow as the casino matures.
SugarHouse Casino video poker
SugarHouse offers six video poker games, all of which are distributed by top provider IGT (Game King).
- Jacks or Better
- Bonus Poker
- Double Bonus Poker
- Double Double Bonus Poker
- Triple Play Draw Poker
- Five Play Draw Poker
The Triple and Five play terminals allow players to choose from nine different games. The pay schedules aren’t top shelf, but still rank in the upper half among NJ online casinos.
Single line machine payouts are better, ranging from a return of just under 99 percent at the low end, to 99.54 percent for Jacks or Better.
Worth noting, is that all single line video poker games at SugarHouse Casino pay out 800 coins for a Royal Flush, regardless of denomination.
That’s good news for budget players, as is the fact that they can play any of the casino’s video poker games for a minimum of $0.10 a hand.
Blackjack at PlaySugarHouse.com
At present, there are two blackjack games. The first is simply titled Blackjack and is provided by IGT. Players are limited to one hand at a time.
Generally speaking, Blackjack offers favorable rules, akin to those found at Atlantic City casinos:
- Naturals pay 3:2
- The dealer must stand on all 17s
- Players can double down on any two cards
- One re-split per hand allowed
- Double after split allowed
- One card dealt per split hand on split Aces
- Six decks used, shuffled after every hand
The minimum bet for Blackjack is just $0.10.
The second game is Blackjack Pro Atlantic City.
This single-hand game is provided by NYX and is available on the desktop client only. The primary difference between Blackjack Pro AC and Blackjack is that the former allows for player surrenders. On the minus side, the game uses eight decks and only allows hands to be split once.
The minimum bet for Blackjack Pro AC is $0.25, with a maximum wager of $100.
PlaySugarHouse.com Casino slots
Slots is one area where SugarHouse Casino really shines. At present, the casino boasts 214 slots, all of them multiple line, penny slots.
For perspective, there’s more than half-a-dozen NJ online casinos, all of which have been in the industry since Day One or shortly thereafter, that support fewer slot games.
In terms of game variety, old standbys and Atlantic City casino floor favorites such as Davinci Diamonds and Quick Hit Platinum, coexist with flashy newcomers like Family Guy, Triple Red Hot 777, and Lobstermania 2.
Other featured titles include:
- Super Jackpot Party
- Miss Kitty
- Merlin’s Millions
- Wheel of Fortune Triple Extreme
Budget conscious players will be pleased to note that the minimum wager required to cover all pay lines never exceeds $2, and for most slots, is $0.50 or less. And action junkies will relish in the fact that most games feature a plethora of bonus games, and dozens, if not hundreds, of pay lines.
The one nuance that appears to be missing is exclusivity, meaning that just about all of the slots found on SugarHouse Casino can be found at other NJ online casinos. But for now, we’ll give SugarHouse the benefit of the doubt — after all, it just launched.
Other games at PlaySugarHouse.com
Players that preference other game types will have a few options.
First off, it offers four roulette variants:
- Double Bonus Spin Roulette
- 3 Wheel Roulette
- Roulette Master
Roulette follows European rules, meaning the wheel only has one zero. The minimum bet for this player-friendly game, and for most other roulette games, is $1 per spin.
3 Wheel Roulette, as the name implies, features three wheels and more betting options. That, and Double Bonus Spin Roulette, give players the opportunity to win 1,200 times their wager on a single spin.
Roulette Master is structurally similar to Roulette, in that there is just a single wheel and one zero. The main difference is that players can wager as little as $0.01 per spin.
There are two other table games on display at SugarHouse Casino: Three Card Poker and Let it Ride. The minimum bet for both games is $1 per hand.
The sites makes allusions to a video bingo game, but as of the time of this writing, it is not available from the game lobby. Coming soon, perhaps?
New player bonus at PlaySugarHouse.com
What you get
- Between $10 and $20 bonus cash, awarded as site credit. No deposit required.
- A 100 percent match up to $100. This bonus, and the no deposit bonus, cannot be withdrawn until a 1x wagering requirement is met.
Although SugarHouse’s welcome package is structurally similar to those touted by most other NJ online casinos, the particulars are worlds apart.
First of all, the no deposit bonus is not a set amount.
Instead, players who register with the site will receive a variable bonus, that will be worth at least $10, but as much as $20. The bonus amount is determined by a Prize Wheel spin.
Secondly, the welcome bonus cap, is low — quite low. Whereas most sites offer hundreds, if not over a thousand, bonus dollars to new customers, SugarHouse patrons get just $100.
The caveat — and its a big one — is that the wagering requirements to clear the bonus are just 1x, effectively rendering it a close to 100 percent cashback deal. By contrast, other sites impose much loftier requirements, ranging from 10x the bonus amount to as high as 100x on select games.
Thus, for the casual gambler, the SugarHouse Casino bonus may appeal, as meeting the clearance requirements are easy and won’t necessitate much time. And barring a horrendous run at the slots and/or tables, at least a portion of the bonus is guaranteed to clear to their cash wallet.
Also of note, SugarHouse Casino allows players to bank their bonuses for use at a later date. To our knowledge, there isn’t a single other NJ online casino that grants players the same measure of flexibility.
SugarHouse Casino VIP program
What you get
- Earn points by wagering on real-money games.
- Climb the loyalty tiers and win virtual spins on the Prize Wheel. Each spin guarantees one of 12 available prizes.
Players on SugarHouse Casino earn loyalty points in much the same manner that they do on other sites; by making wagers.
Points are awarded at the following rates:
- Slots: 1 point per $5 wagered.
- Roulette/non-blackjack table games: 1 point per $10 wagered.
- Blackjack/video poker: 1 point per $25 wagered.
Points are applied to a players tier status. At present, the site features ten tiers, with monthly point requirements for each tier as follows:
- Tier 1: 40 points
- Tier 2: 160 points
- Tier 3: 400 points
- Tier 4: 760 points
- Tier 5: 1,400 points
- Tier 6: 2,800 points
- Tier 7: 5,200 points
- Tier 8: 8,800 points
- Tier 9: 13,600 points
- Tier 10: 20,000 points
- Tier 10+: Contact support
Pretty familiar stuff so far. But here’s where the loyalty system diverges from the norm.
Each time players reach a new tier, up to Tier 10, they are gifted one spin on the site’s Prize Wheel. There, they are guaranteed a minimum 10 percent cashback on their theoretical loss, rewarded as a bonus.
But since the wheel spin outcomes are variables, players have a chance to win much more. For instance, a Tier 5 player is guaranteed $16, but could win up to $75, which equates to nearly 47 percent of their theoretical. Granted, the odds of spinning a top bonus amount are on the lower side.
In order to guarantee more than 10 percent cashback from a wheel spin, players will have to strive to the site’s unpublished tiers (10+). At that point they’ll receive a minimum guaranteed 15 percent cashback. Unfortunately, getting to Tier 10+ will require quite a bit of wagering.
This model stands in some contrast to traditional models that increase cashback rates more incrementally, but offer much lower rates to new players. Also, SugarHouse’s variable model just feels more exciting, both aesthetically, and via the fact that players will occasionally win big bonuses.
Worth noting, is that players that reach Tier 7 can increase their cashback rate even further thanks to the VIP Mystery Calendar promotion.
All in all, the SugarHouse Casino loyalty program is yet another perk that should immediately appeal to the casual gambler, and at least somewhat to the hardcore crowd.
Other recurrent promotions
Free Weekly Leaderboard
Top 50 weekly point earners will share a $1,200 prize pool. Players that don’t make the leaderboard can still win up to $20 per week.
Points are accumulated by making deposits and playing slot games.
Fishing For Money
Players that refer others to SugarHouse can earn between $50 and $500 in bonus dollars for each player referred. The referred party must wager $50 on real-money before the referrer qualifies for the bonus.
Cashiering at PlaySugarHouse.com
SugarHouse supports a massive array of depositing and withdrawal options.
Deposit options include:
- SugarHouse Prepaid Card
- Visa/MasterCard credit cards
- Online bill pay
- 7-Eleven PayNearMe
- Cash at the Golden Nugget casino cage in Atlantic City
- Wire transfer
Minimum deposits for most methods is $10, with maximums ranging from $500 to $50,000 (wire transfer only).
Worth noting is that in order to deposit via the popular ACH/eCheck method, players must first enter in a valid driver’s license number. The benefit of this request is that players are accurately provided the maximum amount they are permitted to deposit. On other NJ online casino sites, this isn’t always the case.
The only notable exclusion from the list is PayPal, which is currently only available on Caesars-affiliated online casino sites.
Withdrawal methods as follows:
- SugarHouse Prepaid Card
- Cash at the Golden Nugget cage
- Check by mail
Most withdrawals generally take 72 hours to approve and process, although individual cases may vary slightly.
Players that opt for a check by mail will have to wait up to 14 days to receive their funds.
SugarHouse online casino customer support
The 24/7 help designation is a bit misleading, as live chat is only available from 10 a.m. – 4 a.m. daily. Email support is round-the-clock, however.
SugarHouse also features a rather comprehensive FAQ section, featuring answers to the most common user inquiries. Registration, account, deposit, and bonus questions are all covered.
Phone support is available at (855) 752-9101.
SugarHouse online casino in NJ – background
New Jersey law mandates all online gaming sites in New Jersey must be partnered with one of the land-based casinos in Atlantic City.
To this end, PlaySugarHouse.com launched in conjunction with Golden Nugget Atlantic City, and is the third skin operating under GNAC’s iGaming permit – BetfairCasino.com and the eponymously named GoldenNuggetCasino.com are the other two brands.
SugarHouse Casino is one of four casinos owned and operated by Rush Street Gaming. Of note, all four of Rush Street’s casino properties are located in states that are solid candidates for online gambling legalization:
- SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
- Rivers Casino in Des Plaines (Chicago area), Illinois
- Rivers Casino in Schenectady, New York
The PlaySugarHouse.com online casino is operating on Rush Street Interactive’s proprietary online gaming software, but PlayNJ has learned that “NYX is supplying NYX casino games content to Rush Street Gaming for their current and future social casino and real money iGaming initiatives in regulated markets,” according to an NYX spokesperson.
And according to one New Jersey online player I spoke with, the PlaySugarHouse.com online casino has a unique video game look and feel to it, and seems to be targeting the younger “millennial” demographic.
What’s in it for SugarHouse?
SugarHouse Casino is one of two Pennsylvania casinos owned by Rush Street Gaming. The other is Rivers Casino in the western part of the state.
Because of its proximity to the New Jersey border, SugarHouse has a strong customer base in western New Jersey.
Additionally, with Pennsylvania expected to legalize online gambling in the near future, launching in New Jersey gives Rush Street a chance to test its RMG software in a real-world setting, and to build up a database of online customers before its product is rolled out in Pennsylvania.
As Chris Grove noted in the Grove Report this week:
“With the potential opening of PA in 2017, opening in NJ now could provide Rush with a valuable leg up on at least some competitors, and the proximity of SugarHouse to much of NJ could open up solid cross-marketing opportunities in the interim. And rumored NJ IGP holder Golden Nugget can benefit by having the favor returned by Rush in PA.”
Good omen for PA online gambling?
With the launch of PlaySugarHouse.com, no fewer than three Pennsylvania casinos now have stakes in New Jersey online gambling.
Mohegan Sun, which operates Resorts Casino in Atlantic City, launched MoheganSunCasino.com in July 2015.
Mount Airy entered into a partnership agreement with 888, and has been doing some targeted marketing, both online and on property.
The willingness of these Pennsylvania operators to jump into the online gambling market in neighboring New Jersey would seem to bode well for the state’s chances of passing an online gambling bill.
What’s in it for Golden Nugget?
The addition of SugarHouse, coupled with live dealer games and the soon-to-be-launched virtual sports, has the capability of further bolstering Golden Nugget’s already strong online casino revenue numbers.
All things considered, it’s not out of the question that Golden Nugget tops the $4 million monthly revenue mark by the end of the year.
More importantly, Golden Nugget will likely receive reciprocity from Rush Street when Pennsylvania’s online gambling industry launches. Assuming the regulations allow for it, I suspect Golden Nugget will launch an online casino skin through one of Rush Street’s Pennsylvania casinos, providing Golden Nugget with an online presence in a state where it lacks a land-based property.
As more states legalize online gambling, and if interstate agreements proliferate, expanding an online brand will be crucial for operators in the US market. The more markets a company can get into early on, the better.
When it comes to casino corporations without a presence in multiple iGaming states (Golden Nugget is limited to Nevada, Louisiana, Mississippi, and New Jersey), this will require partnerships and a little tit-for-tat market access.
- Editor’s review
- PlaySugarHouse.com NJ signup bonus
- SugarHouse online casino platform
- Mobile play on SugarHouse Casino
- Network partners
- Game selection at SugarHouse Casino
- PlaySugarHouse.com promotions
- SugarHouse Casino VIP program
- Other recurrent promotions
- Cashiering at PlaySugarHouse.com
- SugarHouse online casino customer support
- SugarHouse online casino in NJ – background