Starlight Casino Philadelphia Review for May 2024

Ziv Chen

Updated by

Ziv Chen


Michael Graham

Fact Checked by

Michael Graham

Content Editor

Last Updated on 7th May 2024, 03:04 PM


I’ve been spending quite a bit of time at different BC casinos in 2024. My latest excursion brought me to Starlight Casino in New Westminster, which is about 30 minutes outside of Vancouver. I was looking forward to this visit as I recently visited Burnaby’s Grand Villa Casino, which is owned by the same company as Starlight. That was a lot of fun.

Would I be as impressed with Starlight Casino? The following Starlight Casino review will reveal the answer. 

I will tell you about Starlight’s games, facilities, staff, and more. This should give you all the information you need to figure out whether this casino has what you are looking for in a casino adventure. For context, I arrived at the casino with a good friend of mine a little after four in the afternoon on a Sunday. 

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♦️ An Overview of Starlight Casino

Construction of the Starlight Casino commenced in early 2006, and it opened to the public in 2007. It also underwent a $26 million renovation in 2017, so in places it does have a new casino feel. Like Burnaby’s Grand Villa and 29 other casinos in British Columbia, Alberta, and Ontario, Starlight is owned by Gateway Casinos and Entertainment. This modern complex is located at 350 Gifford Street in New Westminster. 

If you decide to take public transit like the SkyTrain or a bus, then you are looking at a short walk. Of course, taxis and ride-sharing services are options, too, as is a shuttle that leaves in one-hour intervals between 10:20 AM and 4:20 PM from Royal City Mall. In my case, my friend drove us there, and we took advantage of the free parking at the on-site parkade. 

Starlight Casino is spread out over 120,000 square feet. You’ll find about 1,000 slot machines along with 50+ gaming tables that offer a full range of games. While I wasn’t surprised to learn that there was a poker room, I was pretty impressed to see a racebook, which is somewhat of a rarity in Canadian casinos.

The building itself is very modern, although it offers a bit of a throwback look. After entering the casino, I thought that it was spacious, well laid out, and perfectly lit. In addition to the Nova Bar in the middle of the gaming area, Starlight Casino has four restaurants, which are:

  • Match Eatery & Public House
  • Kirin Restaurant
  • Noodles Togo
  • RedBar

One thing that Starlight Casino in New Westminster doesn’t offer is on-site accommodations. That said, there are several hotels nearby, including the Inn at the Quay, which has a Stay and Play partnership with the casino. 

Quick Info

🪪 Membership required:❌  No, but encouraged 
👔 Dress code:❌  No, but casual recommended
🏧 ATMs:✔️ Yes, free to use
🚘 Parking:✔️ Yes, free parking
♿ Wheelchair accessible:✔️ Yes
🛏️ On-site accommodation:❌  No
🍴 On-site restaurant:✔️ Yes, multiple
🍹 Free drinks and snacks:

❌  No

🚬 Smoking:❌  No, but it does have smoking areas

🛎️ Services and Facilities at Starlight Casino in Vancouver

As mentioned, there are five food and beverage outlets located within Starlight Casino. My friend and I decided to have a bite to eat at the RedBar Lounge. It offered a relaxed atmosphere, although things seemed to get a little more frenzied when the live entertainment hit the stage in the evening.

 I have to say that the food there was good, although not great. The prices were certainly reasonable. This includes the alcoholic drinks at Nova Bar, which offers regular drink specials. As you may already know, BC liquor laws prevent casinos from offering free alcoholic drinks. However, soft drinks, tea, and coffee are on the house for active players.

I was generally pleased with the level of service I received from the floor staff. Servers were usually nearby and quick to act with a smile. My gambling excursion started at the $5 blackjack table. I was thrilled to have gone on a hot streak during the first hour or so. The table cycled through three different dealers who were all professional. One of them even seemed genuinely happy about my card luck. 

My next stop was the roulette table, where I was once again blessed by the gambling gods. While there were several ATMs and a cage that accepted several payment options, I was hoping that my good fortune would continue, allowing me to avoid reloading. Over the next couple of hours, I tried my hand at a couple of games, including a couple of casino poker games and craps. Again, the dealers were professional, the tables were in tip-top condition, and the seats were comfy. 

While my friend was content playing slots, I headed to the poker room, where I was immediately seated. The poker room was a bit smaller than others I have been to, but it provided a laidback and cosy atmosphere. If you love poker, I highly recommend this venue as it offers an hourly high-hand bonus, the bad beat jackpot, and daily tournaments. It also has food and beverage service. The dealer was a pro, and the players were generally friendly, even if a few of them were obviously well-seasoned.

120K Sq. Ft Venue
50+ Live Tables
1 Entertainment Spaces
1K+ Slot Machines
24/7 Always Open

Accessibility: Starlight Casino is fully wheelchair accessible.

Smoking: There is no smoking indoors, but there are a couple of designated areas outdoors.

Customer Service: The staff seemed pleasant and happy to help. The casino also has a Guest Services station.

Food & Beverages: There are five food and beverage outlets. Encore Rewards members are entitled to discounts.

I had a lot of fun during my visit to Starlight Casino. In terms of the overall gaming options, I don’t think I could have asked for any more. Slot enthusiasts have about 1,000 machines to choose from, while the 50+ gaming tables rival most other larger casinos in BC.

🎰 Games at Starlight Casino Vancouver

The game selection at Starlight Casino is outstanding. Even though the roughly 1,000 slots don’t represent the largest selection in the province, it’s more than enough and comparable with the best online casinos. Those who like playing progressive jackpot slots have plenty of choices. Buffalo Grand, 88 Fortunes, and the ever-popular Wheel of Fortune were some of the busiest machines. There was also a good selection of video poker games.

In terms of table games, Starlight Casino holds its own against any other top casino in the province. Only a few of the 50+ tables were unmanned. Table gaming options include:

  • Multiple blackjack variants
  • Roulette
  • Baccarat
  • Craps
  • Three Card Poker
  • Four Card Poker
  • Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em

If you want to experience the table gaming action in solitude, then you should visit the Solar Arena, which boasts 32 electronic gaming stations linked to live blackjack, baccarat, and roulette tables. I have already let you know that Starlight Casino in New Westminster has a poker room that offers limit and no-limit hold ‘em, as well as Omaha. 

On top of that, you can visit the racebook, which offers live horse racing from all over the world. You’ll find it in the Match Eatery & Public House right next to the gaming area.

There are also a couple of areas for high rollers. The Royal Room features a variety of high-limit slots, including fixed and progressive jackpot games. Meanwhile, the No. 9 Room offers nearly any high-limit table game you can imagine. Everything about these areas screams VIP luxury.

Overall, I thought that the casino’s slot stations were clean but not as clean as they could be. It was hard not to notice the abandoned glasses and various forms of shrapnel on the floor. That said, the table gaming areas were nearly spotless, as were the restrooms. At least the ones I entered.

♣️ Poker :✔️ Yes, dedicated poker room
⚪ Roulette:✔️ Yes
🃏 Blackjack:✔️ Yes
🎲 Baccarat:✔️ Yes
🎰 Slots:✔️ Yes
💎 VIP:✔️ Yes
🏆 Tournaments:✔️ Yes

💰 Bonuses and Promotions at Starlight Casino

I finally broke down and got myself an Encore Rewards card when I recently visited Grand Villa Casino in Burnaby. I don’t know why I didn’t do it earlier, as membership certainly has its privileges. In addition to earning free play credits for slots and table games, the Encore card entitles members to such things as discounts at casino restaurants and hotels. 

On top of that, you instantly receive $10 in casino credits. Members can also participate in exclusive promotions like birthday offers and special draws that offer chances to win cash and other valuable prizes. You can sign up for free online or at Guest Services. You just need to show your ID to get your card.  

Starlight Casino also runs a variety of regular promotions. For instance, a recent Springo promotion had a whopping $1.5 million in cash prizes up for grabs, while a Hot Seat promotion offered participants a share of a $40,000 prize pool. 

The poker room has a bad beat jackpot and an hourly high hand bonus, as well as a splendid breakfast special. These offers change frequently, but you can stay on top of them by visiting Guest Services or the promotions section of Starlight Casino’s website.

🎇 My Starlight Casino Experience

I had a lot of fun during my visit to Starlight Casino. In terms of the overall gaming options, I don’t think I could have asked for any more. Slot enthusiasts have about 1,000 machines to choose from, while the 50+ gaming tables rival most other larger casinos in BC. 

Even though the atmosphere was very lively later in the evening, the overall vibe was a relaxed one. A lot of that has to do with the décor and lighting. People seemed to be having a good time dining, dancing, and watching the band at RedBar. Perhaps my biggest complaint was that the casino could have been tidier. I wouldn’t describe it as dirty, but it was far from spotless. 

I was happy with the floor staff, dealers, and even the security guards. Some were more congenial than others, but that’s to be expected when it’s busy. I had a lot of admiration for our lunch server, who was more than patient with an overly demanding and entitled table of four that was seated near my friend and me. 

My last couple of hours spent in the poker room were a lot of fun. I took a couple of tough beats, but I also got incredibly lucky, sucking out two big wins on the river. Through it all, the other players at the table, including the obvious regulars, were very sociable, and we all had plenty of laughs. It was my best poker experience in a while.

⭐ Standout Moment

From a personal standpoint, my most memorable moment was winning a big poker pot while getting maximum value with a nut flush. 

However, I also remember feeling quite happy for an older lady who won two straight bets within a couple of short minutes at the roulette table. You would have thought she’d won the lottery. 


Encore, Encore!

Encore is a great Rewards Program to join as it covers a lot of casinos. I wish I had done it earlier!

💭 My Verdict on Starlight Casino Vancouver

Yes, I had a pretty good time at Starlight Casino in New Westminster. I was happy to have so many games to choose from, including poker and horse racing betting, although I never did bet on the horses. I thought that the overall atmosphere of the place was ideal, even if it wasn’t the cleanest casino I’d ever been to. I definitely felt safe with so many security guards and other staff keeping an eye on things. 

The biggest drawback for me is that Starlight Casino is just a bit too far out of the way for me. I was lucky enough to have been driven there, but those who take public transportation from Vancouver are looking at a bit of a walk. This area of New Westminster is generally safe, but having to walk through a strange neighbourhood at night can be a tad unsettling.

To be frank, I think that I’d prefer to go to another casino like Starlight’s sister casino, Grand Villa in Burnaby, or River Rock. They too might involve a bit of a trip, but they are much easier to get to using public transport. 

Nevertheless, I feel that casino buffs will have a great time at Starlight Casino. Don’t forget to register for the Encore Rewards program. It’s free, and you can earn loads of valuable perks.

🧭 How to Get There

Starlight Casino is located in New Westminster, British Columbia, which is part of the Greater Vancouver area. If you're going by car, the casino is easily accessible from Highway 1 (Trans-Canada Highway). Take the Brunette Avenue exit if you're coming from the east, or the United Boulevard exit if you're coming from the west.

What I Liked and Didn't Like

Excellent selection of gaming options, including poker and horse racing
Decent array of reasonably priced dining options
Free parking
Nicely decorated modern facility
Great service
Safe and secure
Didn't Like
A little dirty
It is not as close to public transportation as many would like
No on-site hotel

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Meet The Author

25 Years
Ziv Chen
Ziv Chen
Writer Writer

Ziv Chen has been working in the online gambling industry for over two decades in senior marketing and business development roles. Ziv writes about a wide range of topics including slot and table games, casino and sportsbook reviews, American sports news, betting odds and game predictions. Leading a life full of conflict, Ziv constantly struggles between his two greatest loves: American football and US soccer.

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