Seven Stars Insider – October 2012 Edition

go. Renovations will be completed in phases through 2013. Changes will be made to the exterior facade, porte cochere, front desk, bell desk, hotel lobby, retail area and dining levels. The casino also will be remodeled in phases and expanded by 15,000 square feet to include the former Imperial Palace entrance. The Quad will have a new entrance on the north side of the building with access off Koval Road or a tunnel next to Harrah’s off the Strip. A pedestrian walkway will be constructed adjacent to Harrah’s Carnival Court through to the south side of The Quad into the Linq. The hotel rooms are currently not scheduled for renovation.

Planet Hollywood

Pregnant Pause
Holly Madison will leave “Peepshow” October 21 rather than the end of this year. (On August 28, Madison announced she was pregnant.) Nicole “Coco” Austin, co-star of the reality series “Ice Loves Coco”, will replace her starting December 3. Until then, the show will be performed with an ensemble. Austin is currently scheduled to perform through spring 2013.

Atlantic City

Giving New Meaning To ‘Mystery Shopping’
Hard to believe we’re just days away from the Holiday Shopping Spree and all we know are the dates and the “prices” of only three items. What if there was some item I really wanted? Maybe I would have played more last month to get those extra points. I also might be a little upset to see I’m just short a few points for some item I might want. (Perhaps there will be an option of paying cash or using Reward Credits.) And what about combining points from two or more accounts? (The Great Wrap Up in Las Vegas allows this if all parties are present.) Again, it would have been nice to know this.

Dance Of The Hours
Last month, after announcing a change in the hours for the Seven Stars Lounges, the hours have been revised again:

Caesars Harrah’s
Thursdays – 5 to 9 p.m. Thursdays – 5 to 9 p.m.
Friday and Saturdays – 1 p.m. to midnight Fridays – 1 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Saturdays – 1 p.m. to midnight Saturdays – 1 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Sundays – 1 to 8 p.m. Sundays – Noon to 8 p.m.

Note, too, that “last call” is now 20 minutes prior to the posted closing time.

Revel ‘Promotes’ Total Rewards
They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Much to my surprise, I looked out the window while dining at Arturo’s last month and saw that the colorful animation on the Revel’s signature roof-top ball was almost identical to that of the Total Rewards logo – except with a different color scheme.

Bally’s

Bull Is Back
As I was crossing through Wild Wild West on my way to Caesars the other day I noticed that the mechanical bull ride was being reinstalled outside the Mountain Bar.

One Closes, Another Remains Open
Pickles has closed for the season, but Gold Tooth Gertie’s will remain open. Hopefully, someone will update Bally’s Web site. Clicking on Pickles from the Dining page takes you to this description: “Hunger pains got you ‘in a pickle?’ Well, if you’re on the Atlantic City Boardwalk then look no further because Pickles deli at Bally’s Atlantic City on May 18.” Huh?

Virginia City Buffet Gets Second Life
The former Virginia City Buffet at Wild Wild West is now serving as an employee cafeteria for Bally’s and Caesars workers.

Caesars

Diamond Lounge Lizards
I was in Atlantic City on business one Friday last month and decided to try the Diamond Lounge for a quick lunch. By 1:30 there already was a line, and the lounge didn’t open until 2. Even though I knew I could jump the line, I figured I’d return about 2:15 or so; however, as luck would have it, it was just 2 as I showed up at the entrance. When the door opened a little after 2, several Seven Stars cardholders already were at the head of the line, and, I must admit, the Diamond cardholders were very patient and polite, but the way everyone crowded inside reminded me of those “Running of the Brides” sales at Filene’s Basement.

Once checked in, I nabbed a small table by the window overlooking the ocean and placed my drink order. Fortunately, I had the presence of mind to put my player’s card on the table because, when I returned from the buffet, two ladies were pulling another table up to mine to make one larger table for four. When I told them it was my table they were adding to, one of the ladies indignantly stated, “Well, I didn’t see your name on the table!” I politely pointed to my card and said, “But it is!” She and her friend huffed and moved the other table back to its original position.

That’s not all, though. As I was walking to the buffet, I was practically tackled by a man who must have thought he was running the ball to the goal line. Maybe he was afraid they would run out of food? Back at my table, I witnessed some of the most atrocious table manners I’ve ever seen. One man had his sandaled foot up on an adjacent chair; another lady – I swear – never put her utensils down for a solid 20 minutes. The way she was attacking her food, you’d think she hadn’t eaten in five days; either that or she was in training for an eating contest somewhere. And the stacks of food! Shrimp piled on top of salad, fried chicken and pasta piled on top of that. (Don’t these people know you can go back as often as you’d like?) Some were spending more time making sandwiches to take out than eating their lunches; others were quietly wrapping up cookies and pieces of cake to stuff into their shopping bags. All in all, it was pretty disgusting.

Morton’s To Remain 1:1
Good news for steak-lovers. Morton’s The Steakhouse will continue to accept Reward Credits on a 1:1 basis through the end of the year.

Harrah’s Philadelphia

Senior Discounts Every Wednesday
Every Wednesday in October seniors will get 30 percent off at Harrah’s restaurants, as well as complimentary valet parking. Since “senior” is not defined on the postcard I received, I asked a server at BarleyQue, and he told me that seniors were “65 or older”. No one seems to check IDs, though.

General

Question of the Month
Do guests at Paris Las Vegas who are Seven Stars cardholders have access to Le Rendezvous Lounge on the 31st floor without any extra surcharge? According to Erin, a concierge there, there is a $40 charge for up to two people, but you can use Reward Credits or sometimes a host will comp it. For those of you not familiar with Le Rendezvous, this concierge lounge on the 31st floor is open daily from 7 to 11 a.m. and 5 to 8 p.m.

Services provided in the lounge include:

  • continental breakfast from 7 to 11 a.m.
  • appetizers from 5 to 8 p.m.
  • two complimentary alcoholic beverages per person, per day.
  • additional alcoholic beverages available for a nominal fee.
  • daily newspapers.
  • free limited business services, such as photocopies, printing and faxing during lounge business hours.
  • free local telephone calls from lounge.
  • personal concierge services which include, but are not limited to, reservations for restaurants, shows, flowers, golf and transportation.
  • For additional details, contact the Paris concierge, (702) 946-4433.

Shopping For Answers II
Apparently, Atlantic City isn’t the only place where players have questions about their local casino’s fall shopping event. I heard from Seven Stars cardholders who play in Windsor and Reno and they, too, were having a difficult time getting answers to their questions.

Hype, Hype, Hoorah!
“Welcome to a new era of exclusivity. Welcome to experiences like you never imagined. Now, you might want to sit down, because the rewards you’ve earned. . .are quite exciting. You’ve earned exclusive access to private events, tempting cuisine, spectacular entertainment and oh so much more! We’re talking VIP, everywhere you go. Once you’ve experienced all the amazing amenities, exclusive invites and exquisite luxuries, you’ll never want to go back.” Sound like a promotion for Seven Stars? Nope, this is the introduction from Regional Vice President & General Manager R. Scott Barber to the first of the third quarter’s TR Insider events in Tunica, Miss. I guess I’m playing in the wrong market; this certainly hasn’t been my experience in Atlantic City as a TR Insider since the program began last year.

Survey Says. . .
Last month I asked: “What are your favorite types of promotions? Slot tournaments? Comp dollar multipliers? Slot dollar multipliers? Gifts (luggage, kitchenware, jewelry/watches, etc.)? Here’s a cross-section of the responses I received:

“Slot tournaments, comp dollar multipliers, slot dollar multipliers – any one of the three would be okay as my favorite promotion.”

“I prefer comp dollar multipliers because the multiplier is transparent and I already have and/or regifted nearly every gift available. How many times can I get a 15-piece kitchenware set? That being noted, I like – rather, my girlfriend likes – the occasional high-end gift like jewelry. I like gift cards. What I do not enjoy are sit-down dinner events because the dinner is invariably not as good as what I can eat at the property’s restaurants on comp.”

“Gas cards or Visa-type gift cards that can be used anywhere, not just in Caesars Entertainment venues. Slot tournaments, and comp or slot dollar multipliers are fine.”

“I like the free play offers best. My casino host always adds additional free play to the offer (which is almost always $300 for me as a Diamond), up to as much as $750 on one recent trip. Harrah’s Las Vegas is also permitting the hosts to let you double dip with your birthday offer. For my trip in two weeks I’ll get a minimum of $300 in free play plus another $200 ‘birthday’ credit toward food, etc. Along with other coupons I receive in the mail, I shouldn’t have to use any other comp dollars while I’m there.”

“Our favorite types of promotions are slot and comp dollar multipliers.”

“My favorite promotions are, in order: 1) Free cruises because often these are the most valuable offers I receive – only valuable if one likes to cruise, as I do; 2) free play – almost as good as cash; 3) playups, such as the ones Lake Tahoe often offers – one earns cash, free play or gift cards directly proportional to play; 4) comp multiplier days; 5) other gifts (electronics, jewelry etc.) and gift certificates to expensive malls; and 6) drawings. My least favorite promotions are: 1) hot seat – small players have the same chance as relatively big players like me; 2) slot tournaments; 3) concerts and parties.”

This Month’s Survey
In the last paragraph of his page 2 column in the Fall 2012 issue of Total Rewards magazine, Vice President of Total Rewards Joshua Kanter asks, “So how did we do? Let us know what else you want your [Total Rewards] card to bring you, and we’ll try to make it happen!” OK, so what did you – or would you – tell Kanter? Here’s an example from what one reader wrote me last month: “Some Seven Star players who, for whatever reason, choose not to, or are unable to, travel long distances. . .do not take their annual Seven Stars trip. They should receive another type of compensation in the form of slot dollars or cash. Also, it should be standard policy for those individuals who choose not to fly to be compensated for all travel expenses up to the amount allocated for airfare.” Well, that’s one thing. What else? Send me an e-mail (sevenstarsinsider@gmail.com) and I’ll share your thoughts – anonymously, of course.

Darryl D. McEwen, Publisher
Seven Stars Insider

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Las Vegas Writer, Marketer, Consultant. I love Vegas and everything about it. When in Vegas do 3 things: eat, drink & gamble.

Author: Marc

Las Vegas Writer, Marketer, Consultant. I love Vegas and everything about it. When in Vegas do 3 things: eat, drink & gamble.