LONG post alert!
This past weekend, I visited Mohegan Sun.
I had no intention of making a formal / detailed report the way some people here do, but here's some notes about both facilities and casinos.
Connecticut has two casinos, Foxwoods
and Mohegan Sun
, situated about 8 miles apart in Eastern CT. For whatever reason, the MGM at Foxwoods
has it's own website, even though it is connected and uses the same casino chips.
My family tends to prefer Mohegan Sun. The architectural design, right down to the floor tiles, is like night-and-day between the two casinos. The hotel lobby, retail areas and casino have very free-form design with no right angles except where a wall meets a floor.
I tend to descibe them this way:
Foxwoods is very industrial looking, like it was designed by someone who designs shopping malls and coporate headquarters. Don't get me wrong. Foxwoods uses a lot of Indian influences in it's design. But, and this comes from somebody who has no knowledge on the subject and did no research, Foxwoods always gives me the feeling of New Mexico / Arizona / Navajo Indian designs that were added almost as an afterthought.
I do recall reading somewhere why the Mashantucket Pequot tribe uses the lone fox and tree with fire in its logo.Admin note: removed image: www.djteddybear.com/images/foxwoods_logo.JPG
Yet, I do not see any of those design elements used architecturally. Heck, there's a statue of an archer, but no fox!
Mohegan Sun, on the other hand, is what I call "the white man's opinion of what an Indian resort should look like." While it too may use some Indian designs that are not native to the Mohegan tribe, nothing strikes me as being such. Quite the contrary.
I have read that their logo is supposed to be a stylized sun:Admin note: removed image: www.djteddybear.com/images/mohegan_sun_logo.JPG]
That sun logo, or creative versions of it, are used all over as design elements in the carpeting, wallpaper, even the ceilings.
I have photos, somewhere, which shows some of this amazing design work. I'll post them here in a couple days.
The differences in Foxwoods' shopping mall/corportate HQ feel vs Mohegan's Indian feel can even be seen in their property maps.Foxwoods property map
, shows how angular everything is, and how little imagination, or artistic license is used:Admin note: removed image: www.djteddybear.com/images/foxwoods_property_map.JPG]Mohegan Sun property map
, clearly shows the free-form design used, both architecturally, and in the map design itself:Admin note: removed image: www.djteddybear.com/images/mohegan_sun_property_map.JPG]
Sorry for the bad resolution. click here
for the original PDF.
Personally, I think the Foxwoods map should be rotated 180 degrees, since that is the orientation when approaching by car. Mohegan sun needs to be rotated clockwise about 60 degrees to get the correct approach orientation. But because the map is so stylized, I'll let that go.
But there's more. About two years ago, The MGM at Foxwoods expansion opened. It's not indicated at all on the property map. Not even something that says "This way to MGM at Foxwoods." Even the website makes little mention of it. Oh, there are links back and forth, but the websites two seem to be for seperate facilites, even though they are under one roof and use the same casino chips. Interestingly, the MGM at Foxwoods website, doesn't offer a property map. Then again, it's just a small casino with a limited number of tables and slots, some retail and restaurants, and convention space which lines the walkway to Foxwoods.
Also, note that on the Foxwoods map, there appears to be four rooms labeled 'Casino'. The Great Cedar and Festival Slots casinos are just slot rooms.
By contrast, there are three casinos at Mohegan Sun. But to the casual observer walking thru the facility, there are only two casinos, on opposite ends of the retail area. Casino of the Wind is the newest addition, and is more like an extension added to the Casino of the Sky. Each casino has design and decor that matches it's name.
Now on to some personal observations from my trip to Mohegan Sun this past weekend.
Hotel rooms and Pool:
The beds were excessivly comfortable. What I mean was, they were SO soft and luxurious, I felt that the lacked support. The pillows were equally soft yet fluffy.
The result was, while I enjoyed laying on the bed, I found it difficult to fall asleep.
I checked my brother's room and his bed and pillows were the same.
The room ammenities were fine. There was a hair dryer, coffee maker, plenty of towels and soaps, etc. It also had a fully stocked honor bar type fridge, but no extra fridge for out own stuff. The only unexpected items were two water bottles next to the ice bucket.
Until last year, I never used the pools at casino resorts before. Seemed to me to be such a waste of limited casino time. But I started a year ago, and kinda enjoy it.
So I used the pool at Mohegan Sun. It's an indoor pool with, as expected, a somewhat unusual shape. I went at 6:15am - trying to get in and out before it got overrun by kids. There was also an outdoor patio area. There was a bar with snack available. There was also a small table with coffee, tea and fixings, complimentary. I thought that was a nice early morning touch.
Then I jumped into the pool. YIKES! It was an indoor pool, but NOT heated! I lasted about 30 seconds before going to the hot tub. I normally don't even bother with the hot tub, but since I was determined to get wet...
While in the tub, I was talking to people who repeated some things I had been hearing for a while: Mohegan Sun beats Foxwoods older facilities, but is neck-and-neck with the new MGM facility. Maybe we'll go there next time.
Like I mentioned, I didn't plan on writing a review, so I didn't take notes.
I only played craps, poker and a few minutes of BlackJack. At the time I looked, Monday around 10am, $15 BJ was the cheapest I saw. My wife was playing $15 BJ, but grandfathered at $10. Almost every craps table at that time was $5. On Sunday, the craps were all $5 when we got there at 10am, but steadily, all but one rose to $10.
I planned to play Pai Gow Tiles, but when I looked, Sunday around 4pm, the cheapest was $50. Yeah, I know there are a lot of pushes, and the dealer advantage is minor, it was still too much for me. Besides, the Asian gaming section was packed. I don't think I would have gotten a seat.
While walking around the Asian area, I noticed a mini (midi?) Bacarat table that was reserved and empty. It had a sign saying "Macau Style". I also saw an empty large / dogbone table that also said "Macau Style". I started a thread about this: http://wizardofvegas.com/forum/off-topic/general/1917-what-is-macau-style-bacarat/
We only had Sinday Dinner and Monday Lunch together.
I had some granola bars, so I didn't need lunch on Sunday, but instead got an item that I've had before and love.
Michael Jordan has a small line of restaurants. At Mohegan Sun he has the MJ Steakhouse, and next door the MJ Sports Bar. Even though they use the same kitchen, the menus are different - except the one item I was interested in was on both, but with different names, and 50¢ cheaper at the sports bar. Go figure. I verified that it was the same item before I sat down.
Garlic bread, cut and stacked like Jenga blocks, and drenched in a Bleu Cheese sauce. When I got it Sunday, it wasn't as drenched as I remember, but they brought more sauce when I asked, and it wasn't served hot. Whatever. It was still great.
For dinner, we went to Bobby Flay's Bar Americain (Yeah, that's how it's spelled). It's an upscale place. Entrees were in the $35-$50 range. Side dishes were al carte. They were out of a few menu items. We got one of the last bread baskets that included rolls and cornbread sticks. The cornbread sticks were GREAT. Then they ran out of rolls. How does a restaurant run out of rolls? Our reservation was only 8:20pm. I think the last seating is 10:00! But we were able to get more cornbread sticks, and that's what they served people seated after us. We also felt the food was adequate, but not worth the price.
Monday morning, I had breakfast alone. I wanted something simple and fast, and decided to get something I get all the time. A croisant sandwich at Dunkin Donuts. The DD was on the far side of one casino. The poker room that I would be going to next was on the far side of the other casino. Whatever. I could use the walk. The DD only had donuts and beverages! So it was back to walking, where I ended up at the Chief's Deli - right outside the poker room. Sigh. I had a sausage, egg and cheese on a bagel. Cooked fresh for $5. It was quite good. Another patron recommended I get the potatoes for another $2. Those were rather dissapointing.
Lunch with the gang, we ended up at Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana. We ordered a chicken & garlic pizza for $26! I think it was the most expensive pizza we ever ate. But it was quite good, and worth the price. And after 4 of us ate it, there was still some left over.
All in all, we had a great time. And I'm down only about $120. (I still didn't get a financial report from the wife....)
Superstitions are silly, childish, irrational rituals, born out of fear of the unknown.
But how much does it cost to knock on wood?