Rush Street


News Release | Schenectady, NY Posted on 09.09.20

September 9 reopening will include face coverings, social distancing, and an unmatched commitment to cleanliness – along with a new “Young at Heart” lounge for 55+

Schenectady, NY (September 9, 2020) – When Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady reopens today (Wednesday) at 6 p.m. guests can expect a familiar welcoming atmosphere with some noticeable differences due to COVID-19.

For starters, Rivers Casino will no longer be operating 24/7. The casino’s new daily hours of operation will be from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. The new downtime will be used for intensive property-wide deep cleaning, which will be in addition to the continuous sanitizing taking place throughout each day.

Rivers Casino will meet or exceed New York state’s COVID-19 reopening protocols for casinos and will operate at 25% capacity until further notice to comply with state guidelines.

These changes, and more, are part of an all-new initiative called the Rivers “Sure Bet Sanitized” program.

“The Rivers team has been working hand-in-hand with the state to make all the changes necessary to reopen, and with our “Sure Bet Sanitized” program we will meet or exceed all requirements to provide a safe and healthy entertainment environment,” said Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady General Manager, Justin Moore. “The health and well-being of our Team Members, guests and the community is our highest priority. We’re eagerly looking forward to welcoming everyone back to Rivers.”

Rivers “Sure Bet Sanitized” Program Takes Cleaning to a Whole New Level

The Rivers “Sure Bet Sanitized” program is a rigorous new property-wide cleaning and disinfecting program introduced by Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady, in partnership with Albany-based Janitronics, to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

Previously, the Rivers Environmental Services Team worked in traditional shifts to thoroughly clean the property. Today, that expanded team – the Rivers Sure Bet Sanitized Team has been strengthened with ongoing overlapping shifts, EPA-approved disinfectants, and commercial-grade cleaning equipment. Hard surfaces, high-touch and high-traffic areas will receive more frequent extensive and ongoing cleaning, along with an additional focus on sanitizing games and gaming pieces.

Janitronics has supplied the casino with NanoSeptic, a self-cleaning disinfectant adhesive film that has been placed on gaming tables, door handles and other high contact surfaces throughout the entire property.

NanoSeptic stickers and mats transform heavy traffic and touch-point surfaces within into continuously self-cleaning surfaces. Powered by light (incandescent, LED, UV, sunlight, etc.) the NanoSeptic surfaces harnesses this power to activate mineral nanocrystals fabricated onto the surfaces to create an oxidation which is stronger than bleach and works continuously.

NanoSeptic Surfaces was developed by NanoTouch Materials, LLC and delivers the first and only self-cleaning technology currently available on the market.

Rivers has installed new airPHX continuous air and surface disinfectant systems to help eliminate any potential viruses (including COVID-19), bacteria, and other harmful organisms. The casino has also increased the frequency of air filter replacements and HVAC system cleanings.

At the core of the airPHX system is proprietary technology that produces non-thermal plasma, using ambient air at normal atmosphere and at room temperature. By modifying a small percentage of the oxygen molecules from the ambient air, carbon-based compounds including molds, bacteria and, and viruses (including COVID-19) on surfaces and in the air, are oxidized and destroyed at the cellular level rendering them inactive.

Prior to reopening, all 1,150 slot machines, along with nearly every inch of the property, will have been cleaned, sanitized, and inspected by the Rivers Sure Bet Sanitized Team.

Rivers “Sure Bet Sanitized” cleaning and disinfecting program includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Rivers Sure Bet Sanitized Team Members will be wearing yellow shirts featuring the new Rivers “Sure Bet Sanitized” check-mark logo to help guests identify them.
  • 70 new hand sanitizer and 90 sanitizing wipe stations will be located throughout the casino gaming floor and property.
  • New signage and decals reminding guests on proper face covering usage, social distancing and hand-washing techniques will be located throughout the property.
  • Guests will be encouraged to wipe down gaming machines before and after use, or to flag down a Rivers Sure Bet Sanitized team member for assistance.
  • Slot machine seating has been limited and adjusted, and plexiglass barriers have been installed, where appropriate, to accommodate social distancing.
  • The Rivers Sportsbook will be open. Barriers have been installed between betting kiosks and sportsbook tables and chairs are limited for social distancing.
  • Table games will not be available at this time, but will be back in action as soon as possible.
  • The Poker Room has been converted into a new “Young at Heart Lounge” with slots and table games (when available) exclusively for guests 55 and over. Companions will also be allowed entry.

“While we are proud of all the changes that we have instituted to protect our guests, there is one enhancement that we believe is unique in the casino industry, and that’s the conversion of our poker room into a new Young at Heart lounge,” said Moore. “This new guest amenity is exclusive for guests 55 and older and their companions and provides them exclusive access to slots and table games (when available). Our new Young at Heart Lounge is a logical and fun modification to the property that makes sense in the context of our COVID-19 changes.”

The New Guest Experience

In addition to the Rivers “Sure Bet Sanitized” program and other health and safety modifications, guests themselves will play a critical role in helping keep Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady a safe and healthy environment.

Guests will only be allowed to enter and exit the gaming floor at the entrance near the casino’s Event Center and The Landing Hotel. A maximum of four guests will be allowed in the elevators at one time.

All guests will be required to wear face coverings (masks) throughout their visit to Rivers Casino & Resort. Exceptions will be made in accordance with New York State guidelines for eating, drinking, and smoking in designated areas. Face coverings include, but are not limited to, cloth (homemade, quick cut, bandana), surgical masks, N-95 respirators, and face shields.

Guests will also be asked to comply with all hygiene requirements from the Centers for Disease Control, the New York State Health Department, and the county health department, which will be posted throughout the property. These requirements include social distancing, frequent hand washing, and to stay home if feeling unwell.

Other guest requirements include:

  • All guests (hotel and casino) will have their temperature taken before entry (if required by NY state and the CDC).
  • Any guest with a temperature exceeding 100.4 degrees will be required to leave the property.
  • To facilitate contact tracing every guest entering the gaming floor must present a valid form of identification and be a Rush Rewards member. Guests who are not Rush Rewards members can sign-up to become member at the designated Rush Rewards Center.
  • Guests will also be required to temporarily remove their face covering for a surveillance photo before entering the casino.

Additional casino changes/modifications:

  • Mass gathering entertainment will not be offered until further notice.
  • Valet Parking, the Poker Room, The Event Center, Mian, and Johnny’s To-Go, will remain closed until further notice.
  • Flipt, the casino’s burger and sandwich restaurant, will be reopened with an enhanced menu, including select favorites from Duke’s Chophouse and pizza from Johnny’s To-Go — tables and seating will be reduced for social distancing.
  • Duke’s Chophouse will be open with a limited menu and reduced hours of operation. Seating will be reduced to accommodate social distancing.
  • The outdoor smoking patio will be open with slot machines, but chairs will be limited for social distancing. The smoking patio will only be accessible by one entrance and one exit.
  • The High Limit lounge is closed for lounge use, but will be used for additional slot machines.

The Landing Hotel changes/modifications will include the following:

  • The Landing Hotel will reopen on Friday, September 18, with all state required health and safety protocols in place.
  • In honor of those on the front lines during the COVID-19 pandemic, The Landing Hotel is offering a special $79 nightly “Heroes Rate” to all essential workers.
  • All guests will be required to enter the hotel through the valet entrance.
  • Hotel occupancy will be limited to minimize contact.
  • Hotel elevators will be limited to a maximum of four people.
  • Hotel front desk agents will utilize every other workstation to ensure separation.
  • Plexiglass barriers are installed at the front desk.
  • Guidance will be provided to all arriving and departing guests to ensure social distancing measures are followed.
  • Counters, offices, registration desks and all equipment will be cleaned and sanitized regularly.
  • Room service will be suspended until further notice.
  • The Fitness Center will be reopened in compliance with any directives or guidance issued by NYS and local health officials.
  • Industry leading cleaning and sanitizing protocols are in place for room cleaning with special attention paid to all high-touch items and surfaces.
  • Hotel Housekeeping will also include the following:
    • All housekeeping items will be placed in bags and not exposed to the air until use.
    • Hotel carts, trolleys, and other equipment will be clean and sanitized regularly.
    • Sealed “Sure Bet Sanitized” stickers on hotel room doors to indicate that a room has been thoroughly cleaned. Seal will break when guest opens door.
    • Staff will not enter a guest room until the end of their stay.
    • If a guest needs any amenities, including clean sheets, towels etc. they will be left outside the door in a sealed bag.

The new Rivers Casino Team Member experience includes:

  • All Rivers Team Members are required to wear face coverings or face shields and to practice social distancing of at least six feet whenever possible unless safety or core functions of work activities require a shorter distance. Gloves will be required in positions where items are frequently handed to guests or to each other.
  • Team Members will follow all health and hygiene protocols including the proper way to wear, handle, and dispose of face coverings; proper use and disposal of gloves; and effective handwashing/sanitizing frequency and techniques.
  • All Team Members will receive COVID-19 training to include signs and symptoms, along with safety and sanitation protocols. More comprehensive training will be provided to Team Members who have more frequent guest contact. Team Members are instructed to respond swiftly and report any presumed cases of COVID-19 on property and to stay home if they do not feel well. All Team Members will be responsible for reminding guests about proper social distancing requirements when appropriate.
  • There will be one Team Member entrance and larger departments will stagger arrival times to minimize traffic volume. Upon entering, Team Members will have their temperatures taken (*if required by Governor or CDC).  Any Team Member with a temperature exceeding 100.4 degrees will be required to leave the property and provided with health information as directed by the CDC and NYS Health Department. Team Members will also be required to sanitize their hands after clocking in.

“We couldn’t be more pleased for the opportunity to reopen Rivers Casino. We’ll continue to work closely with the state and will adapt our protocols in the weeks ahead if needed,” added Moore.  “We’re extremely grateful for the continued support from our guests, our Rivers Team Members and the community.”




About Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady: Located at the picturesque Mohawk Harbor near the heart of downtown Schenectady, Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady features 1,150 slots, 67 live table games and a 16-table poker room and a live, in-casino luxury sportsbook lounge. The casino offers five distinctive restaurants—among them are Dukes Chophouse, Flipt, Johnny’s To-Go and Mian. Rivers features a multipurpose Event Center space, a lively entertainment lounge—Van Slyck’s, live music performances, free parking and daily promotions and giveaways. The Landing Hotel is a 165-room, six-story boutique hotel with riverfront views located adjacent to the Event Center. Rivers, which opened in 2017, employs approximately 1,200 team members and has been voted a great place to work in Schenectady. Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady is owned and operated by Rush Street Gaming and its affiliates. For more information, visit


Media Contacts:

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