Hi Folks. It’s been a while since my last post. We’ve been busy traversing the country finding the best gambling venues for your entertainment dollar. Our last destination was Shreveport Louisiana on Labor Day weekend. All of the casinos in Shreveport are riverboat-style. 3-floors for gaming space in various sizes. Here is my take on the casinos they have to offer.
This is a Boyd Gaming property that uses the B-Connected loyalty card which is a plus because the points accumulated at any B-Connected property can be used at another. They offer a good mix of slot machines in various denominations. They are mostly older machines with a spattering of new machines here and there. There is a small video poker/keno section on the 3rd floor, but if you ask me there are better venues to visit if you are a video poker/keno player. Not a lot of selection here. Sam’s Town really excels with their table game offerings. They have a larger than usual selection and variety of table games for the square footage they have to work with. On the craps table, they award a $1000 bonus to anyone who can establish and hit all of the points in a single hand. I haven’t seen that anywhere else! Lots and lots of daily tournaments and a pretty darn good buffet. The rooms are very nice and updated. I recommend that you take a look at this place.
The Eldorado casino is right next door to Sam’s Town. It is a bit larger than their next door neighbor, but that does not make account for much because I think Eldorado is in the midst of an identity crisis. They don’t particularly stand out in any way to draw in serious gamblers. Their main drawing card is the “Treasures of Eldorado” kiosk where you swipe your player card which earns you entries into a daily drawing. Not a strong drawing card if you ask me. They work on their own loyalty program which means that points earned can only be redeems at this location. They do offer a fair cash-back program and have a very good buffet with a great variety for quality foods. The rooms are OK if you are staying on a comp, but not anything I would pay retail for.
Across the river from Sam’s Town and Eldorado is The Horseshoe, a Harrah’s property. As far a astetics go, this is the top offering in the Shreveport market. Luxury is the name of the game here. The down side is that the denominations of the table games are typically higher than at the other casinos in Shreveport. If you are a budget gambler that likes playing penny and nickle machines, there is a good selection on the bottom floor. But if you are a high roller and like the larger denomination machines, you’ll be in heaven here. There are lots of $1 slots and a dedicated high roller slot section with $5 – $25 and $100 machines. There are more restaurant offerings than at the other casinos and the rooms are top notch. The best part is the Totals Rewards program. Harrah’s has the best player loyalty program in the industry and with casinos in every major venue, you should be taking advantage.
Heading over to the south side of I-20 from The Horseshoe is Boomtown. Boomtown presents in my opinion the BEST VALUE of all the casinos in the area. They have an excellent selection of table games with $5 buy-in and slot machines, mostly of the 1 cent type. There is a large video poker/keno section on the bottom floor with 5 cent & 25 cent machines. I particularly like the 5 cent multi-card keno machines that are constantly full. They have a lot of new machines here. There have multi-game Cleopatra and Wolf Run slots where you are playing up to 4-games simultaneously. I have not seen these machines offered anywhere else! The buffet is great and the snack bar is open 24 hrs with some basic ‘gut bombs’ that wil get you through some late night runs.
Just a short car ride down the road from Boomtown is Diamond Jacks. This used to be the Isle of Capri. I can’t tell you why Isle of Capri abandoned this property, but what I can tell you is that it need a serious face lift. It looks like the new owners have focused their attention in the right place…updating the machines, but there is still a lot of work that needs to go into replacing the carpeting and the fixtures before they can create their own identity. So far, nothing special about this casino, but we’ll be keeping an eye on them to see what the new owners do with this place.
About 10 miles east on I-20 from the other casinos is Louisiana Downs, a racetrack that has been around for quite a while which has had a casino added. The casino is run by Harrah’s which is a good thing. The not so good thing is that there is not a new machine within 10-miles. Nothing but old school reels and 5+ year old video slots. There is NO VIDEO POKER or KENO and NO TABLE GAMES! They do have an OK buffet and a Fudrucker’s that works with the Harrah’s loyalty program. If you ask me, a can get better gambling entertainment at any of the other properties. Harrah’s needs to update this property if they want to attract players…period.
So there you have it. I’ll try not to take so long before the next post. We’ll see what we can tell you about TUNICA, MS next time around.