Sign Up For Total Rewards Online

Caesars set up an online sign up for Total Rewards last week and, at first glance, it looks nice and easy. However, if you’re familiar with the problems Cosmopolitan has had with their database management for Identity you may have to sign up twice.

Total Rewards is the most successful casino player loyalty program in the world, and for the first time ever, enrollment in the program can now be done online. Sign up now.

One of the biggest benefits of the new online Total Rewards sign-up is that players can now skip the longer, more involved sign-up process at their favorite casino. Once a membership number is issued online, it’s just a matter of presenting the number at a Total Rewards Center, and a new card is issued immediately.

I don’t imagine Caesars will have the same database management problems that Cosmopolitan had with Identity, so don’t expect any issues.  I’m all about online sign up for players clubs (and pretty much anything else) but this really only saves a few minutes.  That said, once I’m in the casino every minute in line is time not spent having fun.

I Thought I Received this Grazie Offer Because I was a Member

Last week I received what looks to be a strange offer from Club Grazie offering me 5,000 points if I stay at the hotel and sign up to be a member.  I can’t figure out what this offer is.  I’m on the Venetian and Palazzo mailing list because I signed up for Grazie a couple years ago, so why the offer to sign up again?

This kind of offer also proves that Las Vegas Sands didn’t cut comps as everyone (including me) has reported.  Rather, they are refocusing their “normal” members on gaining points a la Total Rewards.   Caesars has been running point promotions forever in Atlantic City and while I haven’t seen this in Las Vegas, this seems to be very similar.

It’s interesting that the folks at Vegas Tripping received a similar offer, but weren’t asked to sign up but were just presented with the 5,000 points.  Besides having poor presentation about the comps these awkwardly worded offers are poor reflections on a hotel that tries to present itself as a high end property.

It seems as if Las Vegas Sands is trying to combat the bad press from the no comps talk.  While that makes sense it’s just plain sloppy.

MLife Starts Today (Updated)

MGM Resorts M Life Players Club
M Life

MGM’s new players club, Mlife, starts today in Las Vegas with a slew of contests.

I can’t find any information on how to enter the contests, so check the Mlife site for details.  For further info, you can check the Mlife youtube channel.

***UPDATE: Enter here. Thanks Mac71830

I hope to do a little gambling at MGM properties in the near future to see how Mlife actually works.

MLife: Think Club Grazie 2009

MGM Resorts M Life Players Club
M Life

MGM(RI) is making a big public push for MLife, which comes to Las Vegas in the next couple weeks.  It will replace Players Club as there errr, players club.  They’re doing a huge PR push this week and there’s news everywhere, like this article in the Las Vegas Sun today.

Las Vegas casinos pioneered the concept of comps — freebies, discounts or special treatment for gamblers to soften the blow of gambling losses and make regular folk feel like VIPs. As loyalty programs spread to nearly every corner of the consumer products landscape, Las Vegas and the gaming industry have been behind the curve in including all forms of spending in the reward equation, however.

And today, with 60 percent of Strip revenue derived from nongambling activities, tracking a customer’s spending off the casino floor has become vital to a rewards program.

Yes, I can mock MGM for taking 2 years to do something they should have already done, but kudos to MGM for catching up with the competition.  This seems to be no different from what the other properties started doing a few years ago when Sands reskinned Club Grazie.

MGM owns half the properties on the strip, so this is a welcome addition.  Just remember that comp rooms aren’t free when a resort fee is involved!

M Life Getting Closer

MGM Resorts M Life Players Club
M Life

As the year ends, we look forward to what the new year has in store.  The long wait for MGM(RI)’s M Life will soon be over according to their tweets.

Our pal Mr. Pappagorgio from Vegas Chatter just had a problem with an MGM Players Club offer and I’ve run into problems every time I try to book an offer – especially a free offer.  The only offers that I’ve been able to secure are discounts.  I smell bait and switch here, but I can’t prove that.

While we’re at it, I’m making a New Years wish that M Life allows each property to book for the others.  This is one of the best features of Total Rewards.  Sometimes one hotel doesn’t have an offer available, but I can save time and money because they can book cross property.  MGM cannot.

The cynic inside says nothing will change, but I’m hoping.

MLife On Hold In Vegas

MGM Resorts M Life Players Club
M Life

Vegas Tripping noted last week that MGM Resorts International was delaying the arrival of, MLife, their new players club in Las Vegas.

The club, which has already been implemented at MGM Grand Detroit, Beau Rivage and Gold Strike Tunica was originally planned to make its way to Las Vegas in the 4th quarter of 2010. As of this week, the M Life website predicts “early 2011” as ball park date for its debut.

Well, that’s lame.  MGM’s forray into mass marketing a la Harrah’s Total Rewards will have to wait.  Postmen across the nation are stoked.

Seven Stars Insider – November Edition

Here’s the latest edition of Seven Stars Insider.  This is an easy read and an excellent resource for Harrah’s players.  Head over to Seven Stars Insider to sign up for the newsletter.  There is lots of new and useful information in this edition (some of which I’m going to reference in future posts), so read on for all the goods.

Seven Stars Insider – November 2010

Question Of the Month
My companion cardholder has misplaced her card.  It was issued in Las Vegas.  I’m based in California, but she is a Diamond cardholder who lives near, and plays in, Atlantic City.  How does she go about getting a replacement card?  Do I have to be present?  This shouldn’t be a problem and, no, you don’t have to be there.  Her record should indicate that she is your companion cardholder (and vice versa).  Don’t go to Total Rewards, though, for the reissue.  She will need to go to VIP check-in at one of the Harrah’s properties in Atlantic City.  If they give her a hard time, she should ask for a host on duty – assuming she doesn’t have her own.  He or she should be able to straighten this out.

Read the Fine Print I
You’ve really got to read the fine print when trying to redeem offers from Harrah’s.  Planning to use your 30 percent Seven Stars discount on an NCL cruise to Hawaii?  Forget it.  Check the bottom of the Web site (www.harrahs.com/NCL) and note in tiny letters: “Total Rewards Tier Discount is not valid for Hawaii cruises.”

Read the Fine Print II
Do you ever just pick up the phone to book an offer you received in the mail?  If it’s from Caesars Palace and involves a room reservation, you might want to think twice.  According to one offer I received, “[a] $10 surcharge may apply to reservations booked through our call center”.  Unlike the NCL Web page, however, there was no asterisk (*) directing me to this disclaimer.  It was in much smaller type than the offer and totally disassociated from the offer itself.  Other offers may carry this same fee, so read everything very carefully.  Oh, by the way, when’s the last time Hilton (or Marriott or Hyatt, etc.) charged you a fee to book a room at their hotels?  In this economy, most are grateful for your business.

Donny and Marie Heading To Broadway
Don’t plan to see Donny and Marie at the Flamingo in Las Vegas next month if you’ve scheduled a trip between December 9 and 19.  They’ll be playing Broadway at the Marriott Marquis Theater.  Currently, at least on the Flamingo Web site, no tickets are being sold past November 27.

Caesars Palace Updates
·         Texting Options – Check-out by sending a text message.  At the end of your stay, send a text message with your name and room number.  In return you’ll get an e-mail confirming all the details.  Another feature, “Text To Request,” allows you to request extra towels, housekeeping service, etc.
·         munchbar Happy Hours – My new favorite casual dining spot has dropped the entrée I enjoyed most (and wrote about in the September newsletter), the grilled tuna.  However, they now have a Happy Hour (4 to 7 p.m.) and Reverse Happy Hour (9 p.m. to midnight).  Draft beer and all appetizers are half-price.  The pizzadilla [$6.50] is a good choice if you’re by yourself, but don’t even think about ordering the nachos [also $6.50] unless there are two (or more!) of you – it’s gigantic (but delicious).  A Miller Lite cost $3, so, for less than $10, you can have an inexpensive – if not particularly nutritious – early evening or late night snack.
·         In-Room Coffeemakers – The Augustus and Palace Towers are testing in-room Keurig coffeemakers.  These single-serve systems are great, but they’re not cheap – $12 for a four-pack of individual “K-cups” (available through the minibar).  Consider bringing your own cups from home (they retail for approximately 50¢ each) – or, if you’re staying in the Augustus Tower, just take the elevator down to Seven Stars Registration after 8 a.m. and serve yourself from their complimentary coffee service.  You also can pick up a free copy of USA Today.
·         Total Connect – After you check-in be sure to see the concierge to get a Total Connect sticker for your room key card.  Throughout your stay you can check for special offers by swiping the TC sticker on specially designated signs throughout the casino.  After about 24 hours, all I had was $5 off a Café Lago buffet and a free dessert with the purchase of two entrées at the Augustus Café.
·         Seven Stars/Diamond Registration – If you arrive on Sunday through Thursday after 10 p.m., the Seven Stars and Diamond Registration desks will probably be closed.  If there is a huge line at the “regular” registration desk, look for the small “Diamond Registration” sign at the far left of the front desk, next to the concierge.

Continue reading “Seven Stars Insider – November Edition”

Ventetian & Palazzo Sign Deal with InterContinental Hotels

Yesterday Venetian and Palazzo announced that they signed a 10 year partnership with InterContinental Hotel Group (Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, etc.) to partner their Priority Club members.  This gives IHC a foot into Las Vegas where they previously didn’t have a property and gives Sands corp (Venetian and Palazzo) access to a new database of potential visitors.

Guests at the Venetian and the Palazzo will be able to earn points and redeem them for stays at any of IHG’s 4,500 hotels worldwide, while IHG’s Priority Club Rewards and Ambassador members will be able to use their own points for stays at both resorts.

I would never have found Planet Hollywood years ago if they weren’t a Starwood Hotel.  My friends and I use Starwood often.  Now that I’ve found Kimpton, I’d love for them to have a property in Las Vegas but I doubt that will happen as they’re more boutique focused.

As it relates to Venetian and Palazzo, this probably means that more families will visit the hotels.  This locks that I won’t be returning to Venetian as it’s already packed with too many families.  I’m curious to see how Palazzo handles any overflow that may occur.

This continues the copycat marketing in Las Vegas as Cosmopolitan previously signed a partnership with Marriot to access their customers.  As the ducks line up we’ll probably see Harrah’s expand their relationship with Starwood.  Who will MGM Resorts International partner with next?  They’re next in line.

Cosmopolitan Announces Players Club: Identity

The Cosmopolitan has been slowly ramping up operations as we head closer to its grand opening in December.  Today they announced their players club called “IDENTITY.”

I love a players club I can sign up for and view online and I’m happy to see all clubs moving this way.  I’ve signed up and I’ll be ready to roll in December! I’ll have a giggle every time I see this name because it makes me think of the Carrot Top and FANTASY commercials I used to hear in every cab ride in Vegas a few years ago.  Whisper with me…IDENTITY!  Additionally, it sounds like a men’s fragrance.  OK, I’m done giggling.  Thank you.

New Tropicana Players Club: Trop Plus

Tropicana in Las Vegas continues its makeover with an update to their players club.  They recently introduced “Trop Plus” with chock full of new bonuses.

There’s nothing special here, but it’s been fun watching the Tropicana catching up to the competition.  There isn’t much incentive to visit Tropicana as opposed to any other casino.  If you plan on going here, this is a nice perk.

The changes at Tropicana are great to watch, but I’m looking forward and wondering what happens after they catch up to the competition.