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Harrah's, Horseshoe Dominate Survey

22 October 2003

The results of Casino Player's eighth annual "Best of Gaming" survey conducted among casino gaming enthusiasts nationwide was the highlight of the magazine's July issue.

Rather than make Illinois and Indiana two separate jurisdictions, Casino Player grouped the properties located in the two states under the heading "The Best of Chicagoland".

Even though Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. enjoys the luxury of owning and operating two properties in the survey area, it is amazing how Harrah's Joliet Casino & Hotel and Harrah's East Chicago Casino & Hotel dominated virtually every category.

Between the two of them, the casinos swept first place honors in 33 of the 47 categories as well as sharing a 34th first place honor for having Harrah's Total Rewards voted the Best Slot Club.

The Harrah's casinos in the Chicago-area swept the hotel and associated amenities categories, with East Chicago garnering 18 awards, including Best Hotel and Best Suites, and its sister property in Joliet earning the top spot for Best Overall Hotel Casino and Best Rooms.

In all fairness, it must be noted that the Hollywood Casino in Aurora, The Grand Victoria in Elgin, and Jack Binion's Horseshoe Casino in Hammond do not have hotels on property.

Whereas some of the awards won by the Harrah's properties came in minor and obscure categories, such as Best Sign and Best Costumes, gaming fans cast a huge vote in favor of Jack Binion's Horseshoe Casino Hammond in the all-important table games categories.

"The Shoe" earned honors for having the Best Blackjack, Best Craps, Best Roulette, and Best Baccarat of all the casinos in Chicagoland in the Casino Player survey.

The Hollywood Casino in Aurora won one of the most coveted of the categories for being honored for having the Best Slots, Best Casino, and Best Steakhouse (The Fairbanks Room).

The only other casino to win a first place award was Argosy's Empress Casino in Joliet, which was voted for having the Best Gourmet Restaurant (Alex), the Best Coffee Shop (Café Casablanca), and the Best Nightclub (Oasis).

Ironically, the Grand Victoria Casino in Elgin, Illinois' most successful riverboat operation, was shut out of awards, as were the Majestic Star and Trump Casinos, which share the same pavilion in Gary, Indiana.

For subscription information to Casino Player and its sister publication Strictly Slots, log on to www.casinocenter.com

CASINO NEWS: Playback, the e-newsletter in which casino players are invited to voice opinions, comments, complaints and suggestions directly to upper level casino management at properties throughout the country, went monthly beginning last August.

Norma Foote, the newsletter's editor, said that she had originally planned to make it a monthly publication in 2004, but that the quality and insights of contributors, as well as very positive feedback from subscribers, made her move the launch date up.

"If you are a player who has something to about your casino experience, Playback and its more than 100 casino manager subscribers are willing to listen," Foote said. "Tell us about your positive experiences, especially with your favorite casino. If you have had negative experiences, please tell us about them, too, with constructive ideas on how to improve the situation."

Playback accepts articles (800-1,200 words) for which players are compensated if the article is used for publication. It also accepts letters and comments.

"Even if it has been a long time since you have done much writing, feel free to send your thoughts and ideas to Playback," Foote added. "If you need any assistance, we'll be happy to help with that, too.

Send your submissions to playback@mgci.com

John G. Brokopp

John G. Brokopp's gaming column appears in Chicago Sun Times (Chicago, Illinois), The Times (Northwest Indiana), The Quad City Times (Davenport, Iowa), The Courier News (Elgin, Illinois), The Gazette (Southwest Suburban Chicago) and Senior Wire (Denver, CO). He's also a regular contributor to The Colorado Gambler, Midwest Gaming & Travel, Casino Player and Strictly Slots. John possesses 28 years of experience as a professional handicapper, publicist, freelance writer, and casino gaming correspondent. He is also the author of two very popular books, The Insider’s Guide to Internet Gambling and Thrifty Gambling.

Books by John G. Brokopp:

> More Books By John G. Brokopp

John G. Brokopp
John G. Brokopp's gaming column appears in Chicago Sun Times (Chicago, Illinois), The Times (Northwest Indiana), The Quad City Times (Davenport, Iowa), The Courier News (Elgin, Illinois), The Gazette (Southwest Suburban Chicago) and Senior Wire (Denver, CO). He's also a regular contributor to The Colorado Gambler, Midwest Gaming & Travel, Casino Player and Strictly Slots. John possesses 28 years of experience as a professional handicapper, publicist, freelance writer, and casino gaming correspondent. He is also the author of two very popular books, The Insider’s Guide to Internet Gambling and Thrifty Gambling.

Books by John G. Brokopp:

> More Books By John G. Brokopp