FleaStiff
FleaStiff
Joined: Oct 19, 2009
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October 18th, 2011 at 3:12:30 AM permalink
Bartender, two aspirin please ... and don't slam the lid.

I was in Fort Liquordale, Florida and sober enough to realize that many of the signs were mis-spelled as Lauderdale when I decided the dueling pianos show would be great. Undeterred by the information that the show had recently closed, I continued to follow the printed directions and got lost half a dozen times, ending up by covering the ten miles in about thirty miles.

Finally turned into a parking structure that was the darkest most foreboding place ever and a maze of great difficulty. After asking directions from two equally puzzled Canadians I finally realized that this dark puzzle I was in had to be the parking facility for thefHard Rock hotel rather than the Hard Rock casino. So finally opting to ignore the printed directions I chose the Valet Parking line that seemed to move fast. Handed my keys and two dollars to some guy who looked like he might work there, got the teensiest little piece of green paper in return and staggered into the casino to be greeted by the usual new cars on display and some slot machines.

Ignoring the Players Club table that was half a football field distant, I opted to proceed into the casino only to discover that all table games pits are located "behind me" or "on the other side of the casino" but no one actually seems to know where. There was a 'low' BJ pit of five and ten dollar games: good signage at each table about 6:5 and Dealer Will Hit Soft 17. Crowded. Some screaming about "We missed the bus" and quite alot of screaming about cocktail waitresses being more likely found in Siberia than in Florida. Drinks were for sale and empty glasses were never removed from tables, particularly if the glass had a tall straw in it over which subsequent players had to reach with the predictable results. Dealers refused to "deal basic strategy" and insisted on signals from those in doubt but did often mumble something about you have XX. One table expert had a tiny card in his palm and helped keep the pace up. Dealers were polite enough when being tipped. For some reason the frustration of the driving caused me to lose all sense of what to do when confronted by a pair of Aces or a pair of Eights. Florida booze seems to have a quality of its own.

After some seat reservation disputes I decided to head to the other BJ pit where signs abounded about no mid shoe entry and limits seemed to start at 20 or 25 or higher. I didn't play here, I don't think, but I did see empty seats and assumed this was the 3:2 zone.

There was a mini bacc pit of 25.00 minimum and I did well there playing Banker until I suddenly decided to shift to Player. I was down about a hundred from my BJ experience and soon got up to the plus 125 or plus 150 mark at mini-bacc when I switched to Player and nose dived.

Wandered around in an undecided manner (ie, staggered) and visited the no smoking alcove which offered no great bargains. Orange juice, as befitting a casino in Florida, was available but those tiny little half pint or pint containers were three dollars plus tax, however water bottles were a bargain at 2.95 plus tax. Only two girls in line ahead of me but they had to buy something like eight items that they ordered individually driving the clerk mad and the drunk in line behind them almost to the point of homicide.

Casino was crowded, noisy, lacked maps or decent signage. Cell phones did not work at all thus making communication with strayed companions not much use. Finally found my companion amidst the thousand dollar Seminole skirts that were on sale in one of the perimeter stores. She wanted to stay for one more loud speaker announcement about a drawing of player card numbers I don't know if she ever swiped a card or merely had been issued one. Anyway that next drawing announcement was as about as helpful as those directions to "the next pit" so we decided to sit in these dark couches at the bar. After nearly awakening one sleeping drunk we chose a different dark couch and drank their watered down orange juice with their virtually non-existent Vodka at three dollars a drink or about six dollars every fifteen minutes. No waitress, no glass removal ... just walk up to the bar and then carry the drinks to a couch. Lots of gorgeous women around the place, very noisy casino.

Finally found that teensy slip of green paper and the far distant desk. Inadequate signage about Valet Parking and Valet Pick Up. Inadequate by about a half mile! In order to get to Valet Pick Up must run the gauntlet of over priced shops. After a small fortune on some silly little flip flops and after fifty bucks on some tiny little three inch guitar pin, I became convinced that this woman who looked a bit like my companion and who spent money like my companion had to in fact be my companion so I decided to drive back to the hotel with her after ransoming my car for an additional paltry four dollars that only required a half hour of waiting in line.

Overall: Noisy, crowded, unhelpful employees, poor signage, no maps, weak drinks, mostly surly dealers. Screaming loud speakers, screaming players, screaming wives accusing husbands about missing buses, screaming players screaming about seats, people fainting at the snack bar's price list... my overall impression: It was okay.
DJTeddyBear
DJTeddyBear
Joined: Nov 2, 2009
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October 18th, 2011 at 5:10:00 AM permalink
C'mon Flea...

Tell us hot you REALLY feel!
Superstitions are silly, childish, irrational rituals, born out of fear of the unknown. But how much does it cost to knock on wood? 😁 Note that the same could be said for Religion. I.E. Religion is nothing more than organized superstition. 🤗
FleaStiff
FleaStiff
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October 18th, 2011 at 5:51:13 AM permalink
Addendum:
After a bit of the hair of the dog, I have the following additions and corrections to make:

It seems the town I was in is officially named Fort Lauderdale and is only unofficially known as Fort Liquordale. The casino itself is actually located in some other town or city or something.

The 6:5 Blackjack also offered a Match-the-Dealer bet. One look at the dealer who was there when I sat down and I sure didn't want to match him but this silly little design on the layout seems to have referred to matching the value of the dealer's hand. I think it paid ten to one. From the whooping and hollering that went on every time someone won it, you would think it paid a few zillion to one. It was an annoying time waster and became a very noisy and annoying time waster every time it hit. I was putting chips out as tips to the dealer rather than monkeying around with that Match The Dealer stuff. A few of the dealers acknowledged the tips.

There was a pit of Three Card Poker, Pai Gow Poker, Stuff Like That ... I didn't linger or look at payouts or anything. No seats, so someone must have found the games to be okay. There were lots of tables, I think eight. A few people standing around but all seats were filled so either the offerings were good or no body much cared if they were good or not. I've no way of knowing which it was.

There was an alcove marked High Limit Casino: I stayed as far away as possible. Its not that they had any intimidating signs or anything, I just didn't bother wasting my time where I don't belong.

At the very noisy five dollar table, my companion and myself were the only ones tipping. At mini Bacc we were the only ones tipping too but then for most of the time we were the only ones at the table. Dealer seemed confused when my companion left the miniBacc table to go shopping and wouldn't pay her commissions. Finally dealer seemed to hear my "its okay, I'll take care of it" that I kept saying. It wasn't just the noise level, its that the dealers are not really all that attentive.

Poor layout, distances were very great, extremely high noise level, high prices for drinks, but overall the Hard Rock really wasn't all that bad a casino. As usual with Indian casinos: its not Vegas. As with any monopoly: it ain't cheap.
CrystalMath
CrystalMath
Joined: May 10, 2011
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October 18th, 2011 at 8:43:31 AM permalink
I stayed there once for work, so I wasn't liquored up. In fact, I checked in the same day as Ana Nicole Smith. The rooms were very nice, but they were also about $350 a night.

The part I remember most is when I was watching a man play video poker and I suddenly realized that it was bingo based because a fairy flew across his screen to fix his hold cards. As soon as I saw that, it all made sense why he could hold a jack 10 times and not draw another.
I heart Crystal Math.
teddys
teddys
Joined: Nov 14, 2009
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October 18th, 2011 at 9:07:31 AM permalink
Ugh . . . Florida gambling.
"Dice, verily, are armed with goads and driving-hooks, deceiving and tormenting, causing grievous woe." -Rig Veda 10.34.4
FleaStiff
FleaStiff
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October 18th, 2011 at 11:39:09 AM permalink
Quote: teddys

Ugh . . . Florida gambling.

Yeah, you sure are right about that but cheer up, the Seminole's may not have a monopoly much longer and once other casinos start opening, the really hideous situations will end.
sunrise089
sunrise089
Joined: Jul 12, 2010
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October 18th, 2011 at 12:12:47 PM permalink
Really great review!
FleaStiff
FleaStiff
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October 19th, 2011 at 2:54:03 PM permalink
Further observations surfacing from an alcohol sodden brain:

In truth, if you do go there, get a players club card right away. Its obvious at the snack bars that most transactions seem to involve some sort of comps.

Do arrange meeting spots with your companion that are far away from the very expensive stores.

Do play the 3:2 No Mid Shoe Entry Blackjack if you are going to play any Blackjack at all. Its simply a quieter and more relaxed, less crowded and hectic area to be in. Much easier to get seats in too, much less adjacent seats. I don't know if the dealers are better, but they can't really be worse, that's for sure!

The casino is a maze that would drive a little white rat to its alcohol teat. The noise level is excessive. I was hoping to get back roomed so I could have some peace and quiet.

Knowing the difference between a large sign that says "Valet Parking" as you are leaving the casino and a teensy sign that reads "Valet Parking Pick-up" really does indeed make quite a difference in distance, time and interim temptations on the wallet.
FleaStiff
FleaStiff
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December 9th, 2011 at 6:24:17 AM permalink
Quote: CrystalMath

I stayed there once for work, so I wasn't liquored up. The rooms were very nice, but they were also about $350 a night.


The rooms are still amazingly high priced. Does anyone have any authoritative or even semi-authoritative information as to just how much money a gambler has to put in action to get his room comped there?
hook3670
hook3670
Joined: May 17, 2011
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December 9th, 2011 at 8:43:43 AM permalink
I go there 2 or 3 times a year but do not stay there. I have heard from pit bosses and just my own experience it is very hard to get comps. Now my best advice is find a sympathetic pit boss who has been around other places and ask for some help in getting a room. My parents live about 30 minutes away so I have never asked. I have started getting some low level offers and free plays about 4 months after I lost my ass there.

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