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TheCooler's Sunday jaunt to the Horseshoe in Hammond, IN.

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Trip Reports' started by TheCooler, Jan 26, 2015.

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  1. TheCooler

    TheCooler Professional Gambler and the Best Football Handica

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    My Trip Report

    I live about 90 minutes from the Horseshoe in Hammond, Indiana. I make it up there pretty regularly for poker and every year for the Chicago Poker Classic and the World Series of Poker circuit events. The poker room there is almost second to none. The only poker rooms I think are nicer are are Aria, Bellagio, and maybe Venetian. I don't however spend much time there playing tables there like I do in Vegas.

    Sunday morning I woke up and checked the board like I always do, but today was different. Today, I really felt the need to do some gambling. So I decided to make a quick day trip up to the Shoe. Being that it was Sunday I couldn't go to the bank, so I had to improvise. Thankfully I'm in the pawn business and always have access to quick cash. After I stopped by work and grabbed a modest $5k bankroll I was on my way. When I got there I decided to play some baccarat. The casino's close proximity to Chicago allows it to have a shuttle that runs all day to different parts of the city. The biggest stop for the shuttle is the stop in Chinatown. I'm an incredibly outgoing and friendly person among groups. I can make conversation with just about anyone. However is soon as I entered the Asian gaming area, Le Cheng, I felt incredibly unwelcome. It was clear that everyone was betting against me, regardless of my efforts to bet with the table. At the table I was at I was the largest bettor, and still everyone bet against me. Unlike Vegas, I was in the super-minority playing baccarat here. Yes, Vegas baccarat is dominated by Asian players. But here, I was one of three or four non-Asian players in a room of about 60. About 45 minutes in I just wasn't feeling it here. I colored up it was only down 400 bucks at this point. I decided it was time to go play some craps.

    Unlike the CET properties in Vegas, this place isn't too bad for table games players. There's no 6:5 blackjack and craps tables have 100x odds. My basic craps strategy is passline with full odds, place the 6 and 8, and sometimes the 5 and 9. I didn't play craps for too long because we never really got a good roll going. I had a few losses and was now down about $1300 overall. Now, I don't ever play full odds here because of the 100x. On what I had decided would be the last come out that I stuck around for I decided to play full odds on a $10 pass line bet if the point was a six or an eight. And sure enough if it was an 8. Next roll.....7 out. Shit. Now down $2300 on the day. But hey, they just gave me a free buffet. Things are looking up.

    The Village Square buffet here isn't bad, but I wouldn't call it great either. I'd say it's pretty comparable to the Mirage buffet. I usually only go to one buffet when I'm in Vegas, and lately it's been Bellagio. I'm only gold level with Total Rewards because I never go to CET properties in Vegas. And when I come here, I only ever play poker. This status relegated me to wait in line with the plebes. I was none too happy. The last time I was here they had this fried lasagna that I really liked, and of course it was nowhere to be found this time. I stuck with some Asian food and Italian food, as those seem to be harder to mess up than some of the other things.

    I decided I was going to have a session at blackjack before I called it quits. I hadn't had anything to drink all day, and decided it was time to loosen up. Call me a tightwad, but this place doesn't have free drinks like everywhere in Vegas. So that really sucks. I saw a guy drinking a piƱa colada and decided that would be a good choice for a blistery January day. When the waitress brought it to me I reluctantly paid the $7.50 plus tip and ended up really enjoying the drink. I enjoyed it so much that I ordered two more throughout the evening. I sat at a table with some people that I thought would help me enjoy my time, college girls. I'm only a few years removed from college myself, so I had no trouble making conversation and teaching them basic strategy. This was their first time at a casino, so to them I probably looked like Doc Holliday, or at least I hoped I did. They were flat betting the table minimum of $25 and my base bet was $300. They couldn't believe someone was betting that amount on one hand. When I told them how $300 per hand was peanuts in Vegas, they thought I was joking. Now, I can count cards, but I really don't do it. I do however pay very close attention to what cards have recently come out of the shoe. I played for about 3 hours. I went on about a five shoe hot streak ranging in my bets from $300-$800 or so. I was doubling down and splitting what felt like every other hand. And I kept winning and winning. When I decided it was time to color up I had about $14k in front of me. So that put me up $9k for the trip. Great. The table I was playing at was right next to the cage. As I got up to cash in, I decided to play one last hand from the new shoe. So I made what was my largest bet on a single hand of blackjack ever. $5k. First card, aces of spades. Next card, king of something! Blackjack! I finished up $16.5k. Considering my bankroll for the day this was one of my largest winning days ever percentage wise. Time to go home. I'm officially up for the year.

    Today I checked my Total Rewards account to see what I had earned. They afforded me an underwhelming 494 tier points. Hooray me.
     
  2. pleepleus

    pleepleus 2016 - The monkey is back

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    Nice. Do they still keep a table reserved for Michael (Hoardin) Jordan there?
     
  3. TheCooler

    TheCooler Professional Gambler and the Best Football Handica

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    Not that I know of, probably because he doesn't live in Chicago anymore. There is an area off of the high limit section with a few private tables, so I assume that's where it would be. It's interesting to hear stories from someone about what a tightwad and asshole he is. I have played with several Bulls and Bears in the over the years though.
     
  4. Scottndindy

    Scottndindy Low-Roller

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    Nice win! I have played here probably 10 times and on each trip spent the majority of my time in Le Cheng. For anyone who hasn't been here there is no Baccarat room I have ever been in anywhere that has the number of players that Le Cheng has playing Baccarat. This includes every strip casino in vegas. The big difference between Horseshoe and a vegas baccarat room is that the majority of players are not betting huge amounts. I have been here on a friday night and spent 45 minutes trying to get a seat to play baccarat. Most tables have players backbetting. They have about 20-25 tables. I am a white guy and when playing here it is me and the floor personnel and everyone else is asian. I think there is definitely some cultural differences but I never felt like they were discriminating against me. It definitely feels like you are in a different country when in there. Just a warning if smoking bothers you stay out of this room.

    A bit of trivia about this casino. This is the #2 casino of all CET casinos behind Caesars Palace. It is the closet casino to Chicago and is always busy.
     
  5. pleepleus

    pleepleus 2016 - The monkey is back

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    I played with him at the Mirage once and a butler brought out a bottle of Jordan (How appropriate right?), but was a more expensive vintage than he had requested. He then proceeded to throw a tantrum screaming and yelling saying that the casino was always trying to rip him off. The butler politely said, "We are comping the bottle. We have always comped your alcohol Mr. Jordan." The butler walked off without an extra dime in his pocket. What a jackass.
     
  6. pleepleus

    pleepleus 2016 - The monkey is back

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    Hmm. Sounds like you found a small slice of Macau in Indiana.
     
  7. TheCooler

    TheCooler Professional Gambler and the Best Football Handica

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    I was actually surprised to see a sign right at the entrance of Le Cheng that said it is now non-smoking. They do still allow smoking in the regular high limit area where there are some baccarat tables. I wonder what effect this will have a business question.
     
  8. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Beat me to it. I noticed that sign last month as well. And you're right about the poker room being very nice there. I just wish they ran mix games for less than $50/$100 limits... :(

    Good report Cooler and great win!!! As for myself, I pony up $5 each for craft beers outside of the poker room there...meh...but at least they are pints I guess.
     
  9. TheCooler

    TheCooler Professional Gambler and the Best Football Handica

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    When I playing poker I like to have a Gumball Head or two. They actually serve those in the poker room.
     
  10. pphold

    pphold pp Park Place Degenerate

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    Great job on Blackjack. I like that place. I was in Chicago a few years back and started at The Rivers Casino. I lost a 8k and the Drove to the Horseshoe in Hammond. I won it all back and plus 13k.

    One bit if information there is I was at a Blackjack table and Baccarat table and notice the table limit was $100 min to $100,000. max and $200 min to $200,000 max. I thought that was odd so I asked the pit boss if that was correct that anyone can bet $200,000. a hand? He said as long as you have the chips we will book the bet.

    Las Vegas won't let you do that.


    I have not been up there and would like to go. They have so many Baccarat Games going you can always find a place to bet plus the tables are set up for 3 deep on a single seat number so you can always find a place to bet.

    This was a few years back.
     
  11. TheCooler

    TheCooler Professional Gambler and the Best Football Handica

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    Thanks! Yea, the table I was playing at was $25 min to $50,000 max I first I believe. Later in the night they upped it to $50 min and then $100 min. They do advertise that they have the highest limits anywhere. I would absolutely spend more time there if they had a hotel. It's in a very seedy area and all the nearby hotels are low end chains. The nicest place nearby is a Ramada that I stayed at once...never again. Downtown Chicago hotels are about a 30-35 minute drive and if I'm making that drive I just assume drive an extra hour and be home.

    The thing that turned me off about baccarat is that I'm a really social person, and there was no one to talk to. I know not everyone likes to talk at the table, but it's nice to have someone to chat with. The room is extremely nice, so that's not the problem at all.

    I'll probably be giving them a bit more play at blackjack and baccarat, but I just feel like I get nothing for my play.
     
  12. wanker751

    wanker751 Dutch Rudder Enthusiast

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    Great trip.

    I am so close to all the NWI casinos, I like horseshoe a lot but at my level for VP I go to Majestic as they have 9/6 but when I take people out it is usually to the Shoe!
     
    Downtown - Wanker Returns after baby!
    Wanker Returns After Baby
  13. BeeeJay

    BeeeJay President of The Red Lobster Hostess Satisfaction

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    musta learned that move from his sidekick "No Tippin' Scottie Pippen" !

    would have been cool to witness that, I'm surely Chuck gets tired of tipping behind MJ and Tiger all the time
     
  14. pleepleus

    pleepleus 2016 - The monkey is back

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    Hoardin Jordan and No-Tippin Pippen are quite a crew. Apparently, these are the guys that taught Tiger how to be a bigger jackass.
     
  15. BeeeJay

    BeeeJay President of The Red Lobster Hostess Satisfaction

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    Nate is welcome to stay at my house if he needs to come to Chicago to make a decent-sized bet since MGM won't let him bet $200K. I will warn him the guest room is my daughters with the pink sheets and we'll send her to Nana's. And my wife is the alarm clock, she usually starts bitching with the roosters at the crack of dawn. On the plus side the comped tacos and sloppy joes are to die for. :evillaugh

    Oh, awesome trip report BTW, may have motivated me to make a trip to the Whore's Shoe sometime!
     
  16. RockyBalboa

    RockyBalboa VIP Whale

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    Congrats on the great session!

    Deciding to drop down $5k on a bet when you were walking to the cage to leave is ballsy. Getting a frickin blackjack on it too??! Awesome.

    My luck I would've gotten a 14 and hit it and busted and then the dealer flips a 16 and busts.
     
  17. PayTriple

    PayTriple The Cucumber King

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    Great session, thanks for sharing! Nice to win that $7.5k hand at the end. Were you tempted to bet the$2.5k part of your BJ win, and keep playing until you lost?
     
  18. TXactuarial

    TXactuarial Low-Roller

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    Oh man I didn't realize the HH didn't have a hotel. I was planning on tacking on a few days to a Chicago business trip in june. What's the best hotel casino in the Chicago area?
     
  19. TheCooler

    TheCooler Professional Gambler and the Best Football Handica

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    Thanks! After I was down early I really never expected to get back to even, let alone up so much. I guess it's just the degen in me.
     
  20. TheCooler

    TheCooler Professional Gambler and the Best Football Handica

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    You know, it did cross my mind. But at this point it was pretty late and I had a long drive home. I'm headed back up there at the beginning of March for the Chicago Poker Classic, so I'm sure I'll have some time to press my luck.
     
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