bj4fun
bj4fun
Joined: Dec 18, 2013
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September 5th, 2014 at 6:57:26 PM permalink
We headed to the Tropicana in AC on Tuesday 9/2. We went this exact same week (week after labor day) last year so I'll draw some comparisons. We arrived about noon and headed to the check in at the Havana tower. We were told no rooms were currently available but to check back after 2PM. No big deal we headed to lunch. (note last year we arrived at a similar time and we were able to get our room immediately). As we walked to lunch it was very clear why our room wasn't ready, it was busy, VERY BUSY!

We decided to go to Hooters for lunch. We chose a table so my wife could watch the tennis while we ate (Serena and Venus lost). After lunch we headed to the casino, they have a new $1000000 safe cracker give away. If you earn 5 tier points (per day) you get an chance to crack the safe for prizes. My wife, the slot player, easily qualified each day. I only qualified one day (guess I need to move up from red chips). More on this later...

I started my vulturing runs on Venice Nights/Money Works and Ultimate X. Actually started with a couple of losses but would turn that around later in the week. I then headed to the tables and my wife the slots... She soon came back up $285!!!! The red chip games at the Trop are 8 decks, H17, no Surrender, DAS, NoRSA, Pen is 75% - 80%. They have marks on shoes, but some dealers don't use them (making the pen worse), others always use the mark (shop around). I was quickly down 26 units :(. My wife went off to collect 2 bottles of wine she earned from slot play and get our room key. The room was now ready (right around 2PM) and we headed to the car to retrieve our stuff.

We stayed in the Havana tower. The room was nice with a view north of the ocean, up the boardwalk and toward the marina. Quite sad to see Revel dark. Our major complaint with these rooms are the old TVs (but we knew that going in, we prefer the Havana Tower). But it was neat and clean with a nice view. After we settled in it was time to hit the casino again. This resulted in an even bigger loss than my first session (29 units). Losing double after double, (I very much felt like AoS). My wife qualified for the safe cracker and it didn't open...

We had dinner at RiRa's Irish Pub in the Quarter. We've eaten here before and enjoyed it, but this evening it was not as good. They were having trouble with their sound system but kept trying to fix it causing loud popping sounds. Ughh... They did take 20% off the bill but it may be a while before we return there. (I did enjoy the Irish Stew!).

After dinner I played for a few hours. Lots of ups and downs. At one point I was up quite a bit but then after a dealer change lost it all back. Ended the session even so after day 1 I was down 54 units.

On Wednesday,I started then day vulturing and had a nice win on a $3 spin on Venice Nights. We then headed to the beach. The water was quite nice but there was quite a bit of seaweed. We headed back to the room to shower before lunch and I did a quicky blackjack session while my wife was taking hers. Got back a quick ten units and the comeback was starting! After lunch, Pizza from the market place, we headed back to the casino for some vulturing and BJ. An up and down session that ended even.

We hit the boardwalk for a bit but missed the Miss America contestants by a few minutes. The news crews were still there and the band was still playing. I played another quick session before dinner and things started to kick in, gaining 20 units in about 30 minutes play. Dinner was at the Taco and Taquila bar in the Marketplace. Very good! Great homemade tortilla chips and various salsa dips. We had the chicken Enchiladas with drunken beans and ride. Highly recommended. After dinner, I hit the tables again, and had another up and down session. By far the hand was of the night (and the trip) was the following. With a mid-size bet out, I get A A vs dealer 8... Split and pull A A!!! OMG... Fortunately dealer turns over a 4 and then a K to bust! Yes, I won both hands with 2 :-) Ended the session even, trip down 25 Units.

Of note, the casino, and the entire place was hopping on Wednesday night. We remember last year (same week) and while it wasn't empty it certainly wasn't busy either. Good to see someone is coming to AC.

Thursday started much the same as Wednesday with some vulturing and beach going. Great day for the beach, nice and sunny, warm but not too hot. We spent a bunch of time in the water (not as much seaweed). Very relaxing! After a quick deli lunch in the Market place I headed back to BJ tables and finally caught a good run and was up 25 units bringing the trip back to even!

We headed up the boardwalk and paid our respects to Trump Plaza. Wow this place looked and felt like a funeral parlor. Not at all surprising this place is closing. For those not familiar, this look and feel wasn't any different than it had been on previous visits. Of interest was the BJ table limits, 10 min 50 max! Yes that's not a typo, 50!

Next was Caesar's. They were quite busy as well (good to see). They were dealing single deck BJ (6/5), but their shoes games are still 3/2. My wife does get the whole 6/5 thing. At one point the dealer (who kinda sounded like she was dissing 6/5, said to the player, you get $18 for your $15 bet). I shook my head and my wife said what should he get? I said 22.50! I think she is beginning to understand how bad 6/5 is for the players.

Again we had time before dinner for some BJ. This was an interesting table. I sat down just as another guy was sitting down. There was already a young couple at the table. Now I know what the young ploppy does makes no difference, but the table vibe was just all wrong. I rarely, if ever, get up from a table especially when other seats are in short supply (yes, late afternoon, and the BJ table were all full), but I really wanted to this time. Note to self, next time, GET UP... Ughhh, less the 30 minutes later I was back down 30 units. Dinner was not that much fun!

While dinner was not fun, it was very good. We ate at the Seaside Cafe (next to Fin). Service was very good and the food quite nice. My wife had Shrimp Scampi of linguini and I had the turkey dinner. We both had the chicken tortilla soup. Everything was very good.

Ok, time to hit the tables and make this a winner trip. Sat down at what turned out to be a fun table. The dealer was fun (Maria) and the players all played reasonably well. A few hours later I was up the 30 units I lost earlier in the day and the table began to break up so I cashed out as well. One interesting thing occurred. A player was dealt JJ and the dealer after checking for BJ (A up), paid the player as if she had a BJ. At least 4 of us noticed, and glanced at each other but nothing was said. Not sure what I would have done if it was my hand (I probably would have stopped the dealer), but I certainly wasn't going to say anything on another persons hand.

I checked my comps and wow I had an entry at the safecracker! My wife had tried 3 times now and failed. I walk up, use a variation of my daughters birthday and winner!!! A safecracker special (whatever that is). So we go wait in the players club line to redeem the prize. Its surprisingly busy for a Thursday evening but we have fun in line talking AC with other folks. Everyone has their own ideas of how to fix things, but universal in that thinking is do something other than Revel did! My "special" was tickets to the current show running in the showroom ($25 each for 2 tix), but we have seen the show and were leaving before the next show. We gave the tickets to a nice couple who could make use of them.

So there was still time to make this a winning trip so I sat down at another table. A nice little old lady was there who had been playing since 2PM in hopes of getting a comped breakfast... She got it, but I think it might have been cheaper for her to just pay for breakfast... The cards were running good with 3 of us as the main stays at the table with others coming and going. One guy in particular was really kinda rude to the dealer after she pulled a few 21s in a row. He stormed off, and we were all glad to see him go! Anyway I ended the session and the trip up 20 units! Nice comeback after being down so much early.

As always the dealers at the Trop are quite friendly as are all the employees. They are worried about there jobs though. Much talk of the other closings and how they are not sure the players from those other casinos will stay in AC or head to other places. Only time will tell, but if this week is an indication, business is up at the Trop.

My vulturing resulted in one decent win and several small wins and losses. I ended the 3 days up 26.68 (not sure how I ended up with .68 rather than something a multiple of 5 but it is what it is. A good fun profit.

New at the Tropicana is the 6 card bonus on 3 card poker. I didn't play, but watched it quite a bit. Its interesting and keeps you in every hand. Saw one lady get a nice payoff on a 5 card flush. But at 5 (min) a pop even the dealers were calling it the sucker bet. In fact, one dealer was almost yelling at the player telling him he just lost $100 betting 10 ever hand on the bonus. I think it may be affecting their tips! I wonder what pushing 2 pair would do to the pay table? That comes up quite off and might be a way to keep players interested.

All in all, it was a great 3 day get away. The Trop was busy the entire time we were there. Whether that is just good marketing, the economy, or folks from other AC casinos, I can't tell, but clearly they are doing something right.
1BB
1BB
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September 6th, 2014 at 4:12:56 AM permalink
Very nice! My wife and I have been unabashed fans of AC since the 1970s. We are well aware of the dark side of the city as we have seen it firsthand many times. We also know it's good side and that has enabled us to enjoy ourselves every time we make the four hour drive south.

We've seen it all, the good, the bad and the ugly. We've "opened" our share of casinos on the Boardwalk and the Marina and watched them rise and fall. Due to poor rules I no longer play blackjack in AC unless I happen upon a special advantage. I'm fine with that because it frees me to enjoy some of the other things the city has to offer. I'm so glad you had a good time.

Have you tried the Irish Pub at St. James Place? It's a couple of streets down from Resorts and accessible from the Boardwalk. You won't be comped, obviously, but everyone should give it a try. There's always a guy with a sandwich board directing the crowds there and he often hands out coupons.

Does anyone remember playing tic-tac-toe against a live chicken at the Tropicana? Beat the chicken and win $10,000. The chicken rarely lost. If you had a players card you could play once a day without having to earn points or otherwise qualify. I believe other Tropicana casinos also ran this for a while.
Many people, especially ignorant people, want to punish you for speaking the truth. - Mahatma Ghandi
ECoaster
ECoaster
Joined: Apr 21, 2014
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September 6th, 2014 at 7:37:09 AM permalink
Quote: bj4fun

New at the Tropicana is the 6 card bonus on 3 card poker. I didn't play, but watched it quite a bit. Its interesting and keeps you in every hand. Saw one lady get a nice payoff on a 5 card flush. But at 5 (min) a pop even the dealers were calling it the sucker bet. In fact, one dealer was almost yelling at the player telling him he just lost $100 betting 10 ever hand on the bonus. I think it may be affecting their tips! I wonder what pushing 2 pair would do to the pay table? That comes up quite off and might be a way to keep players interested.



That's interesting, because most dealers at other casinos are pushing that bet with the ole "that's where the money is in this game" line. I feel like I'm tempting fate when I don't throw down 5 bucks on that one... and I had a little run where I wasn't playing it and hit three six-card three-of-a kinds in a row along with a couple straights here and there, but I probably wouldn't have done better than even in the end. I did see one person betting multiple greens on that game dealt a three of a kind and the dealer had the fourth for a nice extra 50:1... but that person kept going and gave most of it back.

I'm not crazy about the Trop, but no doubt it's a pretty busy place and sounds like they're about to get started on some upgrades.
GWAE
GWAE
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September 6th, 2014 at 7:40:38 AM permalink
Quote: 1BB



Does anyone remember playing tic-tac-toe against a live chicken at the Tropicana? Beat the chicken and win $10,000. The chicken rarely lost. If you had a players card you could play once a day without having to earn points or otherwise qualify. I believe other Tropicana casinos also ran this for a while.



my local casino ran this promo as well. I was pissed because I am an "expert" tic tac toe player and I couldn't beat him. I played about 15 times and only lost 3 times. Played to a draw all the other times.
Expect the worst and you will never be disappointed. I AM NOT PART OF GWAE RADIO SHOW
bj4fun
bj4fun
Joined: Dec 18, 2013
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September 6th, 2014 at 9:47:20 AM permalink
Quote: 1BB


Have you tried the Irish Pub at St. James Place? It's a couple of streets down from Resorts and accessible from the Boardwalk. You won't be comped, obviously, but everyone should give it a try. There's always a guy with a sandwich board directing the crowds there and he often hands out coupons.



No, but I'll keep that in mind on our next trip (end of the month I think). I never saw the tic-tac-toe chicken but I remember hearing about it.

The rules are the one thing I don't get about AC. They constantly complain about PA, Delaware and Maryland but they don't seem willing to compete on rules. Really, offer S17 and surrender (which most folks get wrong anyway), and keep people happy while they are playing. Casinos used to be very willing to take your money "slowly". Now corporate greed wants to take you money right away. Problem is, you don't want to go back! Short term profits versus long term success...
Romes
Romes
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September 8th, 2014 at 12:18:21 PM permalink
Very nice trip report! Good to read a bit about things outside of the casino's as I haven't been to AC yet. Glad you had a good, and profitable trip =P.

I couldn't agree more on the rules. I feel like while the counters love surrender, it's a gold mine for casino's because people have no clue how to actually play it. I always see people surrendering any stiff hand to any dealer A-10-9. Amazes me casino's everywhere don't allow it.
Playing it correctly means you've already won.
sodawater
sodawater
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September 8th, 2014 at 7:01:36 PM permalink
Quote: GWAE

my local casino ran this promo as well. I was pissed because I am an "expert" tic tac toe player and I couldn't beat him. I played about 15 times and only lost 3 times. Played to a draw all the other times.



The way this promotion works is that the chicken is trained to peck at whatever square lights up. The computer determines the optimal move and lights the appropriate bulb.

Tic-tac-toe, of course, is a theoretically drawn game with perfect play. So in order to pay off once in a while, the casino operator sets the computer to let the player win (i.e., make mistakes on purpose) on a predetermined frequency. It might be 1 time in 10,000 or 1 time in 100, depending on how often the casino wants to pay out the promotion. The casino can adjust the win frequency at any time.
aceofspades
aceofspades
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September 8th, 2014 at 7:09:20 PM permalink
Great trip report. I have never even stepped foot in the Tropicana. The one time I Was invited there for a tournament I was told on the phone on my drive down there that entry into the BJ tournament required me to open a $10k line of credit. I told them what they could do with their tournament and called my host at the Revel and was given a room for the weekend.

Did the Tropicana have the bed bug issues a while backůsomething that always sticks in my mind when thinking of staying there

At the Taj, the 6/5 single deck is one table on the main floor, right?

Your TR was excellent, felt like I was right there along with you :)
bj4fun
bj4fun
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September 8th, 2014 at 7:27:42 PM permalink
Quote: Romes

I couldn't agree more on the rules. I feel like while the counters love surrender, it's a gold mine for casino's because people have no clue how to actually play it. I always see people surrendering any stiff hand to any dealer A-10-9. Amazes me casino's everywhere don't allow it.



Thanks Romes and I definitely believe casinos should allow surrender all the time. The majority of the play at the Trop was "adequate" with a few notable exceptions. One poor kid (I say kid, but he was somewhere in his 20s) with his girl. Best I could tell is he had no strategy. Just did what he felt. He didn't last very long, hope he got is $100 worth of entertainment.

Another guy was playing with a hand written strategy chart (good call!) except it was a S17 strategy. At least close and at least that meant he got >99% of the plays correct. But it did have surrender on it!

When I play in PA or CT I, like you, see people surrendering all sorts of "wrong" hands.
darkoz
darkoz
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September 8th, 2014 at 7:43:12 PM permalink
My daughter and boyfriend go to the Trop and I didn't understand why they were hopping so much until they explained it to me(Guess I'm not a party person)

The place has recently marketed itself as more of a party joint with a casino than a casino with places to party.

They have nightclubs, an oldies disco, live entertainment that you have to pass coming from the bus lobby/shopping areas, HUGE shopping outlet that's like a mini-mall and even has several stores dedicated to children's clothes, toys, a dedicated candy store combined with an IMAX theater (so lots of partying youngsters with families are coming there).

My daughter pointed out several "Wet Willie" locations which are like a Baskin Robbins with alcohol. MY daughter actually had a bad time with Tropicana one visit and said she was boycotting them but the next week she went in anyway because she said she needed her Wet Willies.
For Whom the bus tolls; The bus tolls for thee

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