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Players Clubs/Casinos

Save these dates for Vegas “gift” days

Monday, October 19th, 2009
Harrah's will host the "Great Gift Wrap Up"

Harrah's will host the "Great Gift Wrap Up" from November 12 - 16, 2009. Another event happens at Caesars Palace in December.

If you’ve been playing Las Vegas this year and using your all-important players club cards, you’ve probably been racking up “gift points” at lots of casinos up and down the Strip.  Now is the time to make plans to cash in those annual points by attending the big “gift-o-rama” events held each year by the various participating casino companies.  Make your room reservations now since you must be there in person to cash in your points and these special shopping days bring in lots of visitors to Vegas.

Here are the dates and venues for this year’s big gift giveaways in Las Vegas:

Harrah’s Entertainment will be hosting their fourth annual “Great Gift Wrap Up” on November 12th – 16th, 2009 at Harrah’s Las Vegas and again from December 3rd – 7th, 2009 at Caesars Palace.  Go to GreatGiftWrapUp.com for details plus a look at this year’s merchandise catalog. You can even get your point total.

MGM Mirage’s popular “Holiday Gift Shoppe Event” will be taking place at participating Las Vegas properties from November 28 – December 13, 2009.  Check out this special event at the company’s PlayersClub.com site and click on the “Holiday Gift Shoppe” logo for gift ideas and a special count-down clock.

Grazie Club members can cash in the points they’ve earned by playing at both the Venetian and Palazzo resorts during the “Grazie Gifts” Holiday Shopping Extravaganza in November.  From November 20 – 29, 2009, players here can choose from such high-end names as Tag Heuer, Ralph Lauren, Coach and more in exchange for their points.  Get the details on this event at Venetian.com and click on the “Grazie” tab then select “Grazie Gifts” as your destination.

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Find Bellagio Las Vegas slot tournament news and more at BellagioSlots.com

Tuesday, July 7th, 2009

We love The Bellagio hotel and especially the beautifully-designed Bellagio casino and now we have even more to love about it thanks to a new website section recently launched by parent, MGM Mirage.  Check out the cool new BellagioSlots.com where you can find all kinds of great information on upcoming special events like casino slot tournaments and players club promotions; news on recent jackpots and winners — including photos of the lucky players — plus details on the super popular “Holiday Gift Shoppe” which will be held November 28 – December 13 this year.  (And don’t forget about this special summer deal at The Bellagio:  play your favorite games this summer between June 1st and August 31st and earn double Holiday Gift Shoppe points!)

There’s also a section on the site that we particularly like which pictures all the “slot hosts” and gives their individual email addresses so you can get personalized attention to your questions or comments.  Also, be sure to check out the page that gives you “Slot Floor Updates” including details on all the newest additions to the gaming floor.  We’re really looking forward to playing the new video poker variations from IGT/Action Gaming, “Ultimate X Poker™” and “Good Times Pay Poker™,” when we visit The Bellagio later this month.

Here’s another item of interest from the Bellagio Slots website and we’re quoting them directly:  “Compared to official data published by the Nevada Gaming Control Board, during the first two months of 2009 Bellagio’s average payback on its slot machines was over 2.75% better than the rest of the Las Vegas Strip! In fact, Bellagio’s payback percentage has been consistently higher than the Strip average since 2005.”  So we just added another reason to love the Bellagio casino!

Looking for a great rate at The Bellagio?  Check out The Bellagio at hotels.com for the summer’s best deals on The Strip.

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Two Times the Rewards at MGM Mirage

Monday, May 25th, 2009

MGM Mirage has some great news for slot club players!  Not only will the wildly popular “Players Club Holiday Gift Shoppe 2009” take place over TWO weeks this year but to sweeten the deal even more, the club is doubling the points earned on slot play beginning June 1 and continuing through August 31.  (Las Vegas properties only.)

Players Club members have been accruing Gift Shoppe points since January 1. Gift Shoppe points are completely free and club members accrue them automatically – no extra sign-ups required.  Plus, these points are in addition to other slot club points and benefits.

Players can redeem Gift Points at the fabulous year-end Players Club Holiday Gift Shoppe 2009 which will take place during the two week event happening November 28 – December 13 where you can get watches, jewelry, electronics, home & sporting goods, Gift Cards, FREEPLAY® and more!

Check for details at MGM Mirage’s website at playersclub.com or at the players club desk at each casino location.    Click Here for the Best Las Vegas Hotel Deals!

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Come Back, Please. We Miss You. Really.

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

Interesting.  The casino offers that have been filling my mailbox the past couple of weeks.  Casinos I haven’t played in for months (and really didn’t even spend much money in when I did visit) are sending me bigger and better players club deals/coupons/promotions seemingly every day. One mailer went as far as saying — in big, bold letters — “We Miss You!”  (Wow, how can you resist such a plaintive appeal?)  To sweeten the deal, a couple of $15 coupons accompanied this particular “love letter.”  And, actually, quite a few of the offers I’ve gotten are enough to get me to visit these casinos.

In addition to great room offers, free shows and merchandise giveaways, I’m also noticing quite a few more tournaments and promotional events for both slot and table game players.  Even the offers recognizing my April birthday have better incentives such as the $25 in bonus birthday play from — thank you, very much — Casino Arizona in Scottsdale.  (A side note:  Casino Arizona’s April giveaway is an umbrella.  These are the same people who gave away mittens and a scarf earlier this year.  Hmmm, someone needs to tell them it rains here just about as often as it gets cold enough for mittens and a scarf….)

Also interesting, a number of the offers are coming to me from the casinos via my email box.  Sending offers through email makes so much sense.  Got rooms to fill in a hurry?  Put together a quick email and send it to thousands of club members within a matter of minutes!

So, what does this all have to do with you?

  1. Always, always sign up for a players club card even when you don’t plan on playing a lot.  A casino can’t send you offers if they don’t know who you are and where to find you.
  2. Do not throw away the mailers unopened.  Who knows what goodies await inside?
  3. Sign up for email notifications from the casinos.  You’ll get some great last-minute offers.
  4. If you live somewhere it rains a lot, I’ve got an umbrella you can have….

Hotels.com Spring Sale- Last Week to Save up to 30% at Hotels.com! – Expires by 4/13/09

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Success a Reality for New M Resort’s “iMagine” Players Club

Friday, March 13th, 2009

For the new M Resort Spa Casino in Las Vegas, the term “build it and they will come” is not just a cliche but an actuality as the new casino tells us that they have signed up in excess of 50,000 people to their “iMagine” players club since opening on March 1.  Considering that their goal for the opening month was 25,000 members total, the casino has blown that estimate completely out of the water.  Casino officials said that additional windows and venues were opened to meet the demand of guests wishing to sign up for the players card.

The M Resort’s iMagine Rewards club members may use their points for dining, cash back, complimentary rooms and suites AND free play. Members can also redeem points at M Resort’s on-site gas station, car wash and pharmacy. ($1 played = 1 point. 333 points = $1 and the resort offers 1,900 slot machines and 64 table games.)

In regards to the overwhelming success of the new resort, Chairman and CEO of the M, Anthony Marnell III, earlier this month said,  “The response has been exciting.  We knew we had a great product to offer our guests and the last few days have confirmed it.”

The new $1 billion resort opened with a bang earlier this month in a grand celebration featuring fireworks, celebrities and a “Who’s Who” of Las Vegas faces.  Located on South Las Vegas Boulevard and St. Rose Parkway, the M features 390 guest rooms and suites, nine dining venues, a state-of-the-art spa, meeting and convention areas and more than 92,000 square feet of gaming space.  The resort’s highlight is a lavish pool and outdoor entertainment plaza with commanding views of the Las Vegas Strip and the surrounding mountains.

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Deep-Stack Extravaganza Kicks Off at Venetian Poker Room

Friday, January 30th, 2009
Check out the "Deep Stack Extravaganza" poker tourney at The Venetian in Las Vegas.

The "Deep Stack Extravaganza" poker tournament starts soon at The Venetian Las Vegas.

The highly successful “Deep Stack Extravaganza” poker tournament returns February 2 to The Venetian Las Vegas poker room.  Appearing on many “Top 10 Poker Rooms in Las Vegas” lists, the 11,000 square-foot Venetian room will host this well-attended event for the third consecutive year.

– Starting chips for the $330 NLH event will be $10,000 and an additional $2,000 in chips with an optional $10 staff bonus.

– The $550 and $1,070 NLH events will begin with $12,500 in starting chips and $2,500 additional chips with an optional $10 staff bonus.

– The $2,500 NLH event will begin with $15,000 in starting chips and $5,000 additional chips with an optional $10 staff bonus.

Total cash prize: Payouts are based on the number of participants that enter the tournament. 3% of prize pool is withheld for poker room staff.

All participants must be at least 21 years of age and have a Venetian players club, “Club Grazie,” card.  You can find all the details plus the results from both the 2007 and 2008 tourneys here on the Venetian’s website.

The poker room offers a special hotel rate available to anyone who plays in a DSE event or plays at least six hours of live play in the poker room. Rates are based on prevailing rate and availability.  Contact The Venetian Poker Room to inquire: 702-414-1000.

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Phoenix Casino Guide for Valley Bowl Game Visitors

Saturday, December 27th, 2008

Check out our new “sister” site:  AZCasinoTravel.com for all your Phoenix and Arizona casino news, information and more!

Among all the visitors coming into Phoenix for the upcoming Insight and Fiesta bowls happening here in Arizona next week, there are bound to be a lot of casino gaming fans.  For those who like to play, here is a list of our Phoenix and Scottsdale area casinos along with casino-related info on dining, lounges, shows, golf opportunities and more.

Harrah's Ak-Chin is one of several Phoenix-area casinos.

Harrah's Ak-Chin is one of several Phoenix area casinos visitors can choose from to play slots, poker and more.

Casino Arizona:  Two locations, both of which are just off the Loop 101 freeway making them very accessible to all the major hotels and resorts.  Free limo service available by calling 480-850-7790. (more…)

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Casino Promotions in Over-Drive to Attract Gamblers

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

Has your mailbox been as stuffed with casino offers as ours has lately?   Thanks to the downturn in the economy, P.B. and I are hearing from every casino we ever stepped foot into over the years.  Stacks of promotional flyers for free room stays – now for three or four or more nights at a time! – and invitations to tons of slot, video poker, live poker and black jack tourneys inundate us.  (My mail carrier, Veronica, must think Doyle Brunson’s living in my guest room!)

We’re also being showered with bigger and better coupons for “free slot play.”  Even our local Indian casinos here in Arizona are not only joining in the marketing fray but upping the ante with $100 for Diamond members at Harrah’s Ak-Chin in Maricopa and $25 from Fort McDowell in Fountain Hills, just to name a couple.  Those same offers usually come with food coupons as well.  Free buffets, free dinners, free food vouchers – if you’re hungry they’ve got you covered.

Email offers?  Check.  Offers by phone?  Check again.  Leather jackets, Dooney & Bourke handbags, gift cards?  Check, check, check.

So what really gets us into the casino and sitting at a machine or table?  Locally, coupons for free slot play or cash are number one for us with merchandise giveaways a close second.  But only if the item is something we want like the Sony PSP® we got last year at Harrah’s Ak-Chin.

When we travel several times each year to Las Vegas, we do look at the offers we’ve gotten when planning the actual dates.  We especially enjoy slot and video poker tournaments and try to play in a couple of those each year.  Oh, and cash and free slot play and gift cards are good, too.  Merchandise doesn’t really get us to go to Las Vegas – too far for a leather jacket with “Caesars Palace” emblazoned on the back.

We’re curious.  What are your favorite offers?  What gets you to make the date?

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Harrah’s Casinos Team Up with WMS Gaming for New Hot Slot Game

Monday, December 8th, 2008

Here’s a very smart move from Harrah’s Entertainment.  They’ve collaborated with WMS Gaming, makers of the wildly-popular Wizard of Oz machines, (you know, the ones I can never play!) and will introduce a special TOTAL REWARDS® version of WMS Gaming’s new Star Trek machine beginning this week in Las Vegas. 

Here’s the skinny from a joint press release dated December 1, 2008 (Emphasis mine) – “Players who are members of Harrah’s TOTAL REWARDS® program will be able to use their cards to create a personalized and differentiated gaming experience on the STAR TREK themed gaming machines at most of the company’s casinos in North America, as Harrah’s moves forward with a market-by-market implementation plan, subject to additional jurisdictional regulatory approvals.

“This server-enabled, networked gaming platform provides players with the unique ability to personalize their game play, allowing them to save their play status and unlock additional bonus rounds and game episodes over time.(more…)

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Black Friday Shopping? No, This Was Way More Fun Than Shopping

Monday, December 1st, 2008

So it’s now the Sunday evening after Thanksgiving and I haven’t set foot in a store all weekend.  (Well, except for the grocery store and that was just a quick stop for bread to make turkey sandwiches!)  No Christmas shopping, no bargain-hunting, no “Black-Friday-up-at-o’dark-thirty-to-hit-the-mall” stories, nothing … nada.  Instead, P.B. and I headed out to Harrah’s Ak-Chin in Maricopa for Black Friday where we played our favorite video poker game, Spin Poker.™ 

Harrah's Ak-Chin in Maricopa, Arizona.

Harrah's Ak-Chin casino in Maricopa, AZ.

Harrah’s was actually pretty crowded Friday, probably due in part to people using the free slot play coupons — good for the holiday weekend only — like the $100 ones P.B. and I had just received in the mail.  (Way to get people in the doors, Ak-Chin marketing!)  Plus Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are when the qualifying drawings are held for the $1,000,000 giveaway finale coming up on December 28 at Ak-Chin so I’m sure lots of players came out for that, too.

We had a fun day at Harrah’s — much more fun than slogging through the stores looking for some Holy Grail of gifts.  We each started out playing Triple Double Bonus games on nickel Spin Poker Deluxe™ and not hitting much at first but then the cards started coming and we each hit for some aces, some deuces, and then threes with a kicker.  I even hit for a Royal Flush in hearts.  P.B. had the “best pay of the day” (we always have a fun competition going between us) with his four aces and a kicker on two lines which paid a little over $440.  We stayed most of the afternoon and left with a little more than we walked in with so a good trip in more ways than one. 

Oh, and on a side note, the bank of new Wizard of Oz™ slot machines was crazy-crowded with people gathered around watching the players and rooting them on during bonus rounds.  People love these new Wizard of Oz machines!  Guess you have to get there early to snag a seat at one. 

The rest of the weekend I’ve spent pulling together the holiday “Gift Guide” along with the other gift suggestions you’ll find here on our site — all for you to give to the players on your holiday list.  The Internet is a wide and wonderful place if you know where to look!

And how did you spend your holiday weekend?  Get any gaming in you want to tell us about?

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Great Gift Giveaway this Week at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas

Sunday, November 30th, 2008

Just a quick reminder for Harrah’s Total Rewards® club players — this week is the 2008 Great Gift Wrap Up® at Caesars Palace.  From December 1 through December 7, redeem club points earned throughout the year at Harrah’s Las Vegas properties for a wide array of gifts including jewelry, electronics, luggage, kitchen gadgets plus sporting goods, accessories and more.  Great brand names in electronics include Sony® and Apple® with high-end accessories like Dooney & Bourke® handbags and Movado® watches also well-represented.

To view your points and the gift selection catalog, visit the Great Gift Wrap Up  site here.  Also, while you’re in town, check to see if The Mirage is previewing it’s new Volcano show yet.  A recent video posted at You Tube gives us this look at the fiery new attraction.

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Las Vegas Strip Heats Up with Re-Opening of Mirage Volcano in December

Tuesday, November 18th, 2008
The Mirage Volcano reopens this December.

I LOVE that The Mirage Volcano will reopen in December.

UPDATE:  The Mirage Volcano opened December 8th to thunderous applause.  See the Mirage Volcano video here.

I don’t know what I’m more excited about — The Mirage volcano returning to the Las Vegas Strip this December or the $33 a night room rates in my player’s club offer! 

I have to say, we have really missed seeing the volcano explode at The Mirage during our last couple of trips to Las Vegas so reading that it will “thunder back to life” next month is pretty cool.  And, not only is it back, but it sounds like it will be better than ever.  Here, let me just quote from the mailing — (more…)

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