Chicago Trip in June

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    cheetahwind

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        cheetahwind

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        So I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions of any good places to play?  Like as in a good place for player rewards and what not.

        I will put this little note, I will not play at any Harrah's, Caesars, or Horseshoe properties.  This is just my preference tho.

        Yet I'm open to any other suggestions tho.
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        Feelin froggy

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        Very cool that you will be in Chicago cheetahwind!

        You must try Rivers Casino. They've stolen most of the business from the casinos just over the border in Indiana like Horseshoe etc. The Rush Rewards program is pretty good. They give free cash and tons of promotions. They usually have some sort of perk for new members like a free buffet or something. Not sure what it will be in June. There is no hotel on site but they offer shuttle service to those nearby, and there are plenty of hotels nearby.


        Ameristar Casino and Hotel is good too but the rewards program is not as good. You get nothing as a new member but there are lots of games and they have the latest ones to hit the market, something that Rivers is a little slow on. It's actually a boat with 4 floors. I loved it!

        Those are my suggestions. Where will you be staying?
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        cheetahwind

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        I'm looking on staying in the Waukegan or Gurneee area.  You would think being within 8 hours of Chicago my whole life I would have been there once.  I never have.  I'm a real big roller coaster enthusiast.  So I'm going to ride some of the coasters at Six Flags there.  Then decided I want to take in a museum and possibly some of the gaming action of the area.
        I'm going to be booking my room within the next week, am looking at doing the second full week of June.  I figure it should be a fun little trip.
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        Lipstick

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        Hi Cheetahwind,

        Welcome to the windy city come June! I'm with froggy i definitely recommend Rivers Casino. They are absolutely the best in the Chicagoland area. It is the closest Casino to downtown Chicago besides Horseshoe which is in Indiana. It does not have a hotel attached but it is in a hotel district and they lined up all around the Casino that will offers free shuttles to Rivers should you decide to spend the night.

        You will definitely get some kind of perk. Every month it can change so hard to tell what will be up for grabs in June either a free buffet or free cash most likely.

        I hope you enjoy our city and the Chicagoans treat you right! You absolutely have to try Chicago style pizza while you are here! My recommendation is Paisanos Pizza! There are two locations in the city and it was rated number 3 for best pizza in the US!

        If i can be of anymore help or offer any suggestions don't hesitate to give me a holler!

        Lips
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        tinker

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        Oh my gosh cheetahwind I'll be flying into Chicago on June 3 and coming right back home on the 7th. Not enough time to get myself into trouble:) LIpstick I'm writing down Paisanos Pizza right now in my planner, my husband and I are big, big, big, pizza lovers.
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        Lipstick

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        Oh wow another visitor to Chicago! You're gonna love the pizza! You give me a hollar too if you need any more tips for your trip to Chicago 
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        It's good stuff tinker! Just a few days can get you into a little trouble Enjoy!
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        cheetahwind

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        So I just got back from my little trip to Chicago.

        Nice City, lots of traffic, and lots of accidents.  The only day I wasn't stuck in a traffic jam was on the way home today.

        My review of a few of the local casinos as follows.

        Rivers
        Honestly I can't see what all of the hype is about.  I mean the buffet was really good, but honestly that was about the only plus I really could get from this casino.
        The penny slot selection was practically non existent, you had to play 2 centers or higher.  I maybe saw like 10 to 15 penny slots on the whole floor.  Otherwise they really were greedy for your money.  The machines were configured to not let you bet off your remaining cents, you had to play certain minimums to play the machines.  Otherwise you had to take your pennies home.  Plus the slots paid barely next to nothing for me.  The fastest 5 minutes on a slot floor of my life.
        Tables were practically for the you had to be a high roller to play blackjack.  Minimum of $25.00 to play a hand of blackjack.  Way out of my regular betting routine there.
        Beverage service was non existent, plus apparently in order to get a soda you have to ask for one from the cocktail waitress.  Otherwise if you went up to the bar, you had to pay for one.  I'll pass.
        I also didn't get a new member perk of any sort.  Other than here you get 15% off of your buffet.  So instead of paying $20.00, I paid $17 instead.
        Maybe if you can earn some points or have some money besides $30 to lay down.  This casino might be ok, otherwise really I really have no desire to return here.

        Grand Victoria Casino
        This was my first casino to visit in the area.  I was initially excited to see my reward points build up rather quickly.  To realize that it takes 1,000 points to get $1 of anything from here.
        Once again penny slots were barely existent here.  I'm starting to see a pattern here in Chicago of the slot bargain hunter.  Yet I did find a nice bank of colossal reels that actually let me play on my $30 budget for this casino.  For at least 2 hours before having me bust out.
        Also the table games were set for the high roller again at $25.00 minimum a hand of blackjack.  So once again I passed on the tables here.
        I did get a new member perk of my choice of a coffee mug, USB charger, or a water glass.  I took the water glass.
        Didn't get a chance to try the buffet, yet the smells coming from it smelled rather good.

        Hollywood Joliet
        This was by far my favorite casino of the 4 I visited.  Nice variety of penny, 2 cent, nickel and so on and so forth slots.  I didn't feel like I had to wanting to waste tons of cash just to get an experience here.  I tried a new Alibaba like machine, I can't remember the name of it by WMS.  Yet it was a pretty decent paying machine.  I stuck in a $20 and walked away from the machine with $250.
        Now silly me saw the hot shot progressive machines getting up there for the lower 2 progressives.  Mainly because the 3rd highest one had been hit.  Yet as I found out they weren't going to be easy to get.  $100 later I gave up on trying.  Just figuring it wasn't going to happen.
        I did try my luck on the new price is right game, just like any novelty game.  Lots of small line hits but nothing huge.
        Tables again as I figured out in Chicago, required a $25.00 minimum bet to play blackjack.  So my 3rd casino I passed on playing tables at.
        The players club I found a bit confusing, because I didn't get a pin set or anything.  Also I think a gift was advertised for new members, yet I didn't get 1?  Yet I figure if I do accrue something worthwhile points wise or comp wise I'll figure out the pin # system later.
        Otherwise this was my best time frame played in a casino.  Lasted 3 hours on $30.00.

        Hollywood Aurora
        Nice small selection of machines and table games, yet it had a clean atmosphere to it.
        The slots weren't doing too well this day, but had a nice variety penny, 2 cent, nickel, and so on and so forth slots.
        The first casino in the area that offer $15 minimum blackjack.  I still passed feeling the sting of loosing $90 at the other 3 casinos.  Plus I didn't want my money gone in 2 hand possibly.
        The buffet seemed a bit smaller compared to the other 3 casinos, yet it seemed cozy at least.
        I found out the same card I had from Joliet also worked at Aurora.  So I ended up not needing a new card, which I found to be rather neat.
        This was my last day casino, so I was rather tired and didn't take in much.

        Otherwise I had lots of fun at Six Flags, and enjoyed some of the area gaming.  Honestly I really liked the feel of Hollywood Joliet, I do plan on going back maybe in October.  With a bit more cash and try some table gaming for once.  Otherwise that was my experience on this trip.

        I might blog a bit more later about my experience.
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        Lipstick

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        Glad you found Chicago a nice city and i hope the locals treated you right! I agree the traffic here is horrific. What happened to "rush hour"? That simply doesn't exist here anymore because any hour of the day is backed up with non-stop traffic.

        Yes the table games at Chicago area Casinos are pricey and most are $25 minimums. That's why i usually don't play unless i am out of state with more reasonable minimums like $5.

        Crazy as timing would have it......after posting about how great the promos are at Rivers Casino they decided to completely change their marketing last month and to be honest i am really disappointed. Everyone was offered the free weekly gifts, now its for selected members and the fact they offer no incentive for new players is really bad PR. 

        It is definitely a more high roller casino especially for tables and Video Poker that has a quarter minimum coin denomination on three lines or more. I had a very lucky run there for about a year but now that my luck has run out it's a bit to rich for my blood and am reconsidering a new spot to spend my money!

        I like Hollywood Aurora but have not had a chance to check out their new location in Joliet and hope to visit there soon.

        When at Grand Victoria Casino were you able to see there newly revamped buffet located right outside the Casino? By far the most beautifully designed buffet i have ever seen.

        Lips

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        cheetahwind

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        I saw the outside of the buffet, but I didn't get a chance to look inside.  I did go to there little cafe.  The food as usual for a casino cafe was overpriced, but was pretty decent.
        The main thing that surprised me about Aurora, and maybe it's because they don't want people just parking there for downtown things.  Was the fact if you didn't have a marquee card, you had to pay for valet.  Luckily I had one, but just took me by surprise was all.
        Also yes, most of the locals were real friendly and always got excellent service whenever we went.
        However the Country Inn in Gurnee, IL.  I would so not recommend for a hotel.
        The outside looks nice, but you can tell there slowly letting it slide.  I'm guessing the only time of the year that hotel makes money is when Six Flags is open.  Otherwise the first night my lamp broke, the second day my bathroom light flickered off.  You could tell the tiles and grout in the floor were in much needed TLC. The pool area was kept a scorching warm 90 degrees to keep the pool warm they said.  Then on my final day the lights tripped off again while I'm showering.  Not a hotel, I would jump on right away again.
        Plus everything in the city from where I was at, was hell of a drive.  So I think for future reference I'll plan on staying a bit closer to the action than in Gurnee.
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        The Grand Victoria Buffet does things differently too. Most of the food comes in little dishes so rather than scooping it onto your plate, you take the dish.

        Very cool that you got to check out all the local casinos cheetahwind. I agree about Rivers. They are pricey. I went with someone there a couple of months ago and they could not believe that there were almost no pennies. You have to play 2 cents or more more. They definitely cut back recently so you can't even get a free buffet with your new membership. They'll learn when we all stop going there.
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        cheetahwind

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        Feelin froggy wrote:

        The Grand Victoria Buffet does things differently too. Most of the food comes in little dishes so rather than scooping it onto your plate, you take the dish.

        Very cool that you got to check out all the local casinos cheetahwind. I agree about Rivers. They are pricey. I went with someone there a couple of months ago and they could not believe that there were almost no pennies. You have to play 2 cents or more more. They definitely cut back recently so you can't even get a free buffet with your new membership. They'll learn when we all stop going there.


        Interesting, than for sure I'll have to try there buffet the next time I'm in town.  That sounds like almost like the food than should always have that fresh taste to it then.  Than some places that serve in large dishes and everything tastes sort of luke warm, and sometimes not very tasty.
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        cheetahwind

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        So a minor update on some of the after math of my trip.
        It would appear that apparently Hollywood must have enjoyed my business.  Despite how small it was.  I got a coupon for a free buffet for both Aurora and Joliet.  I also got $15 free play from both casinos.
        So for sure I'll be giving more of my business to both of those casinos then if I get back to the area.
        Granted the free play and buffet is only good until the end of July, but hey it at least shows even though I won't be able to use it.  That they actually appreciated my business.
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        cheetahwind

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        Now today Grand Victoria sent me $10 free play as well.

        On top of the stuff I already got from Hollywood I'm also invited to a free night in there hotel in Joliet.

        For $30 I'm impressed with what I'm getting for offers.  Now the only one who hasn't jumped on board yet, which I'm highly doubting they will.  Is Rivers.
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        Lipstick

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        That's great so now that means you have to return to Chicago! How can you pass up a free meal, free play and a free room! We will have to wait and see if Rivers Casino jumps in with something.

        Lips

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