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Players Clubs/Casinos

New Gila River Casino on Pace to Open November 20

Wednesday, November 5th, 2008
Workers recently installed this sign at the new Gila River Casino, Lone Butte.

Workers recently installed this sign at the new Gila River Casino, Lone Butte.

The new Gila River casino, Lone Butte, at Loop 202 and Kyrene Road in Chandler, Arizona is coming together nicely for the scheduled November 20 opening date.  I am really looking forward to playing in this new Phoenix-area casino which is slated to have 850 slot machines, a 750-seat bingo hall, new high-limit player areas and exciting table games including Fortune Pai Gow Poker Progressive, Let It Ride Three-Card Bonus and Three-Card Poker.  And, for a non-smoker like me, the thought of a state-of-the-art smoke removal system built right into the facility makes me swoon.

In grand opening promotions, casino customers can play their favorite games for cash and prizes including a new Pontiac Soltice which will be given away on December 4th.  Prior to the main event car giveaway, the “Luck Has a New Home” promo will award cash prizes to players from 6 – 10 p.m., November 5, 12 — at the current Lone Butte location —  and on the 26th at the new casino. (more…)

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How To Turn a $25 Coupon into $1200

Saturday, October 25th, 2008
While maybe not a fortune, Fort McDowell had $1200 waiting for me.

While maybe not a fortune, Fort McDowell had $1200 waiting for me.

Sounds like an infomercial, doesn’t it?  The funny thing is – it’s true!   It happened to me this week at Fort McDowell Casino in Arizona and it proves – again – why you should use your player’s club card.

Earlier this week, P.B. and I decided to head out to “The Fort” to take advantage of some coupons that came in our quarterly “Fortune Club” mailers – one for $25 in cash, another for free dinners.  After we turned in our cash coupons, we sat down to play at a couple of All-Star Poker™ machines.   I chose the Spin Poker™ option – my favorite game – playing Double Double Bonus in the 10¢ denomination and, on my third hand, hit for a couple hundred dollars with four 2’s and a kicker.  About 10 hands later, I was dealt the ace, king, queen and ten of spades…held the four cards… held my breath…and YES!  Got the JACK for royal flushes on three lines and $400 x 3 = $1200 (and a W-9!) 

With the free dinners thrown in, this turned out to be a profitable trip for us and all because of a $25 coupon.  I think it’s more than we made in the stock market this week and a lot more fun!

There were a lot of people at the casino that same night, many of whom were cashing in coupons so The Fort’s promotion is paying off in terms of getting people in the door.  It would be nice to think that they – and casinos everywhere – would continue to offer decent incentives to frequent players, especially in this economy.  Jean Scott has a couple of really good articles this week on her blog at Anthony Curtis’ Las Vegas Advisor.  In an interesting post from October 18, she talks about the different ways casinos can react to the economic downturn and in a second post from October 23; she outlines some “Slot Club Changes.”  You’ll see, when you read them, how the two articles are related.

From my own perspective, while local casinos have no where near the competition that Las Vegas, Reno or Atlantic City casinos have, I would like to tell them that offering decent club incentives would keep frequent players coming in – good economy or bad.  Don’t give me $5 or $10 to show up – at midnight – or other ridiculously-low, crazily-limited “bonuses.”  You’ll weather the storm and build player loyalty to boot.  Win, win.

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