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Two December One NIght Stands - Blue Chip and Ameristar

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Trip Reports' started by leo21, Jan 10, 2016.

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  1. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    My Trip Report

    Figured it was time to chime in on some of the offerings in the NW Indiana area hotel wise. Right now the Chicago area hotels aren't keeping up so these are some of the places I look to for a "staycation".


    I stayed at Blue Chip in Michigan City, IN at the beginning of December. I normally stay in the Spa Tower and even pay to upgrade to it if I wasn't offered it on comp. This time, I went with a newly renovated Blue Chip Tower room. The decor is very modern and inline with things Boyd has done at Gold Coast and Orleans. However, it wasn't the biggest investment and I won't be shocked if it's shabby again in a few years. Despite the reno, the Spa Tower is the better choice - rooms are more comfy with a larger bathroom, they are quieter and more lux. It would still be my first choice but I won't be disappointed if I have to take room in the Blue Chip Tower.

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    The gambling was okay but the real star of the trip was the new menu at the Willam B's Steakhouse. They've added menu items, many of the old school variety. I tried the Asian Pork Belly which was good if not a bit too salty and the coq au vin which was a nice treat but was blown away by the Lyonnaisse salad, which had bacon and croutons and a poached and was topped with warm bacon dressing. I am hoping this winter is not chock full of lake effect snow so I can get back to have the salad again!

    A few weeks later, I popped into Ameristar in East Chicago, IN. This property has changed hands several times with Harrah's being the most notable previous owner. Harrah's built the hotel on property and Ameristar renovated a few years ago. I love coming here for the sunken tub.

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    Gambling was okay again but the difference was there was a real attempt to have the hottest new games on the floor here. Blue Chip is good about keeping some of the older games untouched while Ameristar has focused a long time on hot and new. It's been hard for me to stay loyal here because of all the ownership changes but because of the hotel, it's been worth it not to write if off completely. At this point in time, these are the two of the best casino hotels in the region. I haven't stayed at Four Winds yet, so I don't know how it ranks in comparison.
     
  2. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Nice report!

    The reno at Blue chip doesn't look bad, but yeah, Spa Blu still looks nicer. And yeah Ameristar has always tossed in the newest games. St. Charles is the same way. It's gotta be really popular to last there. I also don't like that East Chicago not a barge. I'm lazy, I don't want to go up and down stairs multiple times. Haha
     
  3. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    I hear you on the boat vs. the barge. But the East Chicago boat is one of the nicest I've seen. They've got escalators so I don't mind changing floors. Each section of the boat feels different and I like the change of pace.
     
  4. bluesdude

    bluesdude Low-Roller

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    Thanks for the TR Leo. We haven't been to Blue Chip for quite a while. Have they done anything about improving the buffet? We tried it one time and it was the worst! BTW, how is the VP?
     
  5. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Buffet isn't bad. But I dunno when the last time you had it was. If it has been in the last 3 years, not a lot has changed.

    As for VP, they used to have my favorite game of all time 9/6 JoB w/STP (99.82%). But that got downgraded to 9/5 (98.72%) in 2013. After that downgrade, no 99%+ VP left. :( But there are a reasonable amount of games "one notch" below full pay.

    Best multiline game left, 98.91% Deuces. Best single line game left is 7/5 Super Aces (98.85%), they also have 7/5 Super DDB (98.61%). They also have 9/5 Red and Black DDB (98.57%) which is the same payouts for DDB, but also gives 200 coins for an Ace High straight of the same color, so it's always better to play that over regular 9/5 DDB.

    Some strategy adjustments for red and black ddb to squeeze out more payback. I'm Vman96 in the thread.
    http://forum.videopoker.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=7902

    Quarter level STP is also 9/5 DDB (98.14%). There is also a 25 play nickel STP with 7/5 Bonus (98.29%), but I'm often playing for much fewer lines than that.

    Also decent craft beer selection at a reasonable price. But sometimes their taps are suspect, especially at the B bar. You may want to ask for a sample before buying any.
     
  6. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    Yeah, the buffet lineup hasn't changed. There's nothing to get excited over. The lack of consistency is the real problem. There are clearly times when the quality is way off and the service is inconsistent. But they give out free buffets pretty easy so its hard to pass on at least for breakfast/brunch. Otherwise, I prefer to go to Nelsons.
     
  7. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

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    Yeah Nelsons is pretty solid, imo.
     
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