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Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Sun Jul 21, 2019 6:58 pm
by treblehook
This trip report is a little late, but I was wondering if Resorts went out with a bang or a whimper.

Night one: I booked Hollywood for Friday night with my host who works out of St Louis but is really helpful for Tunica. Fairbanks was absolutely great as usual. Incredible filet and incomparable service....and comped doesn't hurt.

I got lucky and was called for a drawing for $325 in free play. Also had a couple of nice VP hits.
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Night two: Every casino hotel was sold out or wanted exhorbitant prices, so I took a chance on the Royal Inn and Suites in Tunica for $75 and boy was that a chance. Worst hotel I've ever stayed in. They should be ashamed of themselves. I can understand that they don't have a ton of business and probably can't reinvest but the egregious stuff could've been fixed with a little time, dedication, and elbow grease.

If I had enough room or tools to bring this back safely from the Tunica flea market, I'd have gladly spent the $100 they asked.
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Had one good hit at the Fitz:
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After watching the Xfinity race at Sam's Town's ultra comfortable sports book, I went on a "hot roll":
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Then I went to collect my $15 in fp with the intent on just blowing through it and going back to my hotel of horrors, but boy was I surprised:
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Day three: Comped night at Good Strike. Had some good hits but I gave most of it back on a stupid James Bond slot. This was by far, the best.
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Horseshoe held an Indy 500 / Coke 600 party in Bluesville which was very poorly attended, but I had a great time lounging and watching the NASCAR race. It was so comfortable that I even took a nap during the second stage.

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Day four: I checked in on a comp at Resorts for my last night and the last night I'd ever be able to stay there. The room was plenty nice and the comped supper of hamburger steak (three patties!) from the snack bar was excellent. The casino kicked my butt as usual, so I said goodbye and good riddance as I made my way back home to Oklahoma. I made a nice stop in North Little Rock at "Arkansas Record-CD Exchange" and picked up a couple of rare George Jones and Merle Haggard albums.

Even though I've hated Resorts after it was Harrah's, it's still a shame to lose another Tunica casino. Hopefully the last one for a long while. I hear that Roadhouse's barge had problems that CET didn't want to spend to fix, especially since they knew the buyout was coming. But does anyone know why Resorts closed? Simple lack of business or something else? Did they do anything special on the last night, or just lock the doors? Between them and Bally's, I figured they would have survived, but Penn really turned Bally's aka 1st Jackpot into what appears to be a profitable venture. Maybe I shouldn't be surprised since they were right next door and Resorts became Hollywood's ugly sister.

Re: Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Sun Jul 21, 2019 7:56 pm
by WILynn
I think once Penn took on Resorts, the writing was on the wall. I hadn't been there in awhile, and, in retrospect, had I known it was closing when we were over at Hollywood in April, we probably would have stopped in for one last time. I have never had much luck there. I think they were declining for years-they got rid of all of their hosts several years ago, and had some of the rudest employees in Tunica IMO (Except for possibly the Fitz employees at the check in desk.) I'm surprised 1st Jackpot is doing ok being all by itself and having no hotel. One of the group of us that tries to meet in Tunica a couple of times a year really enjoyed staying there. He will miss it.

Have you gotten the new card from Hollywood yet? Can you tell the differences in the cards? I have been curious about that. Make sure to cross the Royal Inn and Suites off the list. Was your last night at Resorts the last night it was open, or is it the end of June? I can't remember.

Thanks for the trip report!

Re: Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:18 pm
by treblehook
I haven't gotten the MyChoice card from HW yet, but I did receive a mailer from them yesterday for 3 free nights at M Resort or Tropicana in Vegas w $300 dining credit and $120 in free play. I'm thinking about taking them up on it and staying at The M during the National Finals Rodeo in December. I played a couple of times at Ameristar in Kansas City when it was owned by Pinnacle and under the My Choice player's club umbrella and they always sent nice Vegas offers like that, so maybe My Choice will be a positive change for Penn National's customers.

I stayed at Resorts on Memorial Day and it was pretty dead. I hope to hear from someone who was there on their last day which I believe was June 30th...just curious if they did anything special. To be honest, I just never really liked the joint. I guess my best memory there was seeing Mickey Gilley play their ballroom a couple of years ago.

There are rude employees everywhere, but sadly Tunica has more than it should. I can tolerate ignorant and/or grumpy, but there are too many outright rude, completely apathetic, and hateful associates there, spread across every property.

Re: Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Wed Jul 24, 2019 1:10 am
by Brianzz
That Royal Inn is definitely a last resort to stay at, better off sleeping in the car. We stayed there years ago and it was a dump then, I'm sure nothing changed. There's another one there, I don't recall the name, but I think the place is pink, it's along the same lines as Royal Inn.

Resorts closed because of revenue issues. Penn said in a press release that both Resorts and Bally's have barge issues, Bally's has been pumping leaks for probably 10 years, which I presume Penn is still doing. To fix the leaky barge they would have to close the casino, drain or lift the barge out of the hole in the ground with river water in it and do the repairs, probably cheaper to keep pumping. If Ballys were smart they would have latched on to one of the old Grand barges before they were knocked down, I'm sure CET would have sold them for cheap.

Resorts had some drawings the last night they were open, no great hoopla though. If the customer count was the same as a normal night, those would be been easy wins. Probably wasn't much left to play, all the participation games were already removed and in house progressives shut down, along with few to no table games left.

Tunica is losing market share to other states opening casinos. People aren't going to drive hours out of the way for the same result they can get closer to home. Tunica had a really good thing going for awhile, but alot of the casinos kept a stagnant casino floor, same games for years, hardly any changes at all. A few have decided to update the casino floor, become more active on social media (Fitz), but I'm afraid it's too little too late for the market, it'll die a slow miserable death. Even the fire department closed in April, leaving fire protection for the casinos up to the volunteer fire department, that speaks volumes about the decline in tax revenue from the local casinos.

Re: Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Wed Jul 24, 2019 1:52 am
by Brianzz
The current long term plan in place by the Tunica CVB is to get approval from the state for land based casinos, like in Biloxi after Katrina, in Tunica county and hope the existing casinos will reinvest (abandon their current properties) in new properties closer together, and I presume closer to Interstate 269, for a Las Vegas Strip type of resort area, or as I fondly refer to it, delusions of grandeur. This dates back to late 2016 and there's been no movement at all on a bill. Players and casinos alike know that Tunica is just 1 2011 flood away from being done. I just can't see the currents spending a billion dollars on a new property, especially when you consider Penn bought Ballys AND Resorts for 44 million. The revenue just isn't there anymore. When they opened casinos in the 90's, you could pretty much only gamble 3 places, Nevada, New Jersey and Mississippi, it's just not the case any longer. Most people in the US are within a 2 hour drive from a casino now, whether it be a destination or a rip off NA casino, like my 2 locals. There will still be the die hards that go to Tunica till the last casino closes, I'm one of them, but like most, I can't get there as frequently as I used to. Back in the early 2000's I was there 5 or 6 times a year, now I do good to make it once a year.

Even still, Georgia is gunning for a billion dollar gambling complex in Atlanta (MGM), eventually every state will legalize some form of casino gambling.

Re: Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Thu Jul 25, 2019 10:02 pm
by treblehook
Thanks for the information Brian, I had no idea that both Resorts and Bally's/1st JP had problems with the barges. It sounds like barge problems were the deciding factor in closing Roadhouse also. I hope someone finally walked out of Resorts a winner on June 30th. I was surprised and impressed that Penn demolished the hotel on the Bally's sight and hopefully they will do something with the Resorts property besides letting it sit.

The old Isle of Capri is an eyesore over at Sam's Town. I'd love to poke around in there. I don't think Boyd throws anything away...ever, so I'd bet it's full of old machines and promo material.

I hope Tunica hangs on for awhile because I really do enjoy going a couple or three times a year. That 8 hour drive home is tough though.

Re: Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Sat Jul 27, 2019 9:25 pm
by WILynn
I don't know if you'd like to poke around in there. They used it for Katrina Refugees and rumor has it it was torn apart. I'm not sure if Boyd ever put any machines in there, I think they used it for overflow hotel space prior to Katrina. Rumor has it it's full of rats and snakes, which wouldn't surprise me given the area.

Re: Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 7:03 pm
by treblehook
I had heard that some of the Katrina refugees were pretty rough on every hotel that was gracious enough to take them in, what a shame. I'd also heard that they closed that tower shortly after the refugees left. I'm sure you have it on good authority that it's full of rats and snakes, so I'll take your advice and stay away.

Since CET still runs some sort of operations out at the old Grand site, I wonder if they hold any hope of doing anything with any of that property. It was so sprawling....again, what a shame to see it sit and deteriorate.

Check out this video from an "urban explorer" of the old Grand/Harrah's. ... OD4xbU2nov

Re: Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 7:05 pm
by treblehook
Ok that link didn't work. Try this one:

Re: Memorial weekend - 4 nights in 4 different hotels

Posted: Tue Jul 30, 2019 8:52 pm
by WILynn
Interesting video. It is such a shame that people can't not only keep their hands off of what isn't theirs, but feel the need to destroy it. I think I might be a little afraid (or more than a little) to go into any of the abandoned casinos/hotels. Especially after hearing he heard others in there. You might walk into something you can't walk out of! That could ruin a fun gambo trip.