Rooms at the Showboat Atlantic City ("The Mardi Gras Casino") are located in two towers, Bourbon and New Orleans. Off the main lobby near the center revolving doors there is a special VIP check-in; however, it may not be open during certain days of the week, or after certain hours on weekdays.
Self-parking in an adjacent garage is complimentary for Platinum, Diamond and Seven Stars Club guests, but it's a long walk from your parking space to the front desk. Complimentary valet parking at the front door – about 10 feet from the front desk/VIP check-in – is available for Diamond and Seven Stars cardholdbers. [When you're ready to retrieve your car from valet go to the New Orleans Tower – not where you dropped off your car. Seven Stars cardholders get priority service, usually "guaranteed" at seven minutes or less.] Outside where you retrieve your car Showboat has installed a nifty video screen so you can watch the progress of your car. Each vehicle is assigned a number based on tier score, e.g., Seven Stars is 1, Diamond is 2, etc. Match the number on the screen with the number on your claim check.
Rooms in the older Bourbon Tower have been removated with flat screen TVs and new furniture, but many of the rooms in the newer New Orleans Tower look pretty threadbare. Furniture in some rooms is scratched down to the "wood" (particleboard?), and looks more like it belongs in a Motel 6 than a Caesars-owned casino. One recent visit found no hangers in the closet, one water glass in the bathroom and only decaffeinated coffee. (An initial call to Housekeeping went unanswered, but a subsequent call brought another glass and some "regular" coffee. However, on the second day of a two-day stay, at 5 p.m., the room still had not been made-up.) Decor is nothing special, but most rooms are relatively large, and some offer ocean views. All have small refrigerators and coffeemakers. The large suites in the Bourbon Tower are, well, large suites, but they offer balconies which can be most enjoyable when the weather cooperates. Special House of Blues Suites are located in the New Orleans Tower.
Atlantic City law requires all casinos to designate at least 75 percent of gaming space as "non-smoking." The large casino was renovated and redecorated about a year ago, and is a relatively tasteful monument to its New Orleans-themed roots. Much like Bally's Atlantic City, it attracts a less "sophisticated" clientele, possibly due to the busloads of daytrippers that come through the doors of its self-contained bus terminal. Complimentary drink service – in cheap, flimsy plastic cups – in the casino is relatively frequent; and dealers, slot attendants and servers all are extremely friendly and helpful. In addition to a full complement of slots and video poker (including a separate high limit room), the casino has table games, as well as separate high limit and Asian gaming areas.
Dining - Like Caesars and Bally's, there is an adjacent restaurant, Royal Noodle House. Other than Royal Noodle House, the casino offers Scarduzio's for steak and seafood and Casa di Napoli for traditional and contemporary Italian fare. There also is the extensive French Quarter Buffet offering several cooking stations that assure more freshly prepared food than many of its competitors. In addition, Showboat has the 24-hour Earl of Sandwich which offers sandwiches, pastries and other light meals, and Johnny Rockets on the Boardwalk. To the rear of the casino is the House of Blues restaurant -- rebranded Crossroads -- which features menu items developed by celebruty chef Aaron Sanchez.
Special Seven Stars Benefits*
Seven Stars cardholders have a dedicated entrance to the buffet, enjoy priority seating, and a complimentary beer or glass of wine with their meals.
Seven Stars Club
There is no Seven Stars Club, but the large Diamond Lounge overlooking the Atlantic Ocean offers priority entrance to Seven Stars members, and allows up to three additional guests (two more than Diamond members). If there are others waiting to get in, simply walk in the lounge and present your card to the host. At extremely busy times when there is often a long line – especially when the club first opens, a host will be stationed at the door monitoring "traffic." Again, simply show your card to him/her, and you will receive immediate entry. The line for the buffet (cold cuts, salads, desserts and at least two, if not three, hot entrées) is often lengthy, so priority entry to the club won't help reduce the wait inside. While not indicated as such, there are three distinct components to the buffet: hot items, salads and cold cuts, and desserts. If you're skipping the hot items, simply look for an opening and jump ahead to the cold items, or hit the dessert portion of the buffet from the very end. If you're not eating, there is a large bar which seats approximately 30 people. If you sit at the bar, look for Carl† – he's one of the friendliest, most knowledgeable and professional bartenders in town. Drinks may be taken out of the club, but only after being decanted into plastic cups available at the door. Hours (subject to change):
Monday and Tuesday: The lounge is closed, but Diamond and Seven Stars cardholders each can get two complimentary buffets, but no alcoholic beverages
Wednesday and Thursday: 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.*
Friday: 2 to 11 p.m.*
Saturday: Noon to 11 p.m.*
Sunday: Noon to 8 p.m.*
*last admittance is a half hour before closing
NOTE: There is a 10 comp dollar per person per admission charge for Diamond cardholders who did not earn a least 25,000 tier credits last year (January 1 through December 31) or have not earned at least 25,000 tier credits since January 1 this year.
Should You Choose This For Your Annual Trip?
Atlantic City is a premier destination for "locals" throughout New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Delaware. With three other Harrah's properties in town, The Pier Shops at Caesars, spa treatments, and relaxing on the beach (weather permitting), it would be easy to spend four nights (and $500) here – especially since you can "cross charge" to your room any meals, spa treatments, etc., even if they take place at Caesars, Harrah's or Bally's. Of the three Boardwalk hotels, as a base of operations, Caesars certainly would be the first choice over Bally's and Showboat, with Showboat's being second. (Harrah's Resort also offers first class accommodations and amenities, but it is not on the ocean and a bit away from all the activity and nightlife on the Boardwalk.) For those without other transportation, complimentary shuttles for Total Rewards® members run regularly among the four Caesars-owned casinos.
When you check-in, be sure to verify that your $500 comp account has been set-up. Alcohol charged to the room counts toward your $500 in expenses, but not gratuities for meals and spa treatments. Any taxes on food, liquor and spa services are waived, and are not counted toward your $500 in allowable expenses. Best advice is to keep all your receipts until you settle your final bill.
There are many direct and connecting flights into Atlantic City's local airport (15 minutes from the Boardwalk), but many guests fly into Philadelphia International Airport and either rent a car or arrange limousine service. One advantage to having a car is the ability to make a day trip to charming Cape May, or many of the other nearby Jersey Shore attractions. While round-trip airport transportation to your destination property is included as part of your Seven Stars Club trip, Caesars will not credit you the cost of this toward your rental car. Another option would be to take a limo from the airport, then rent a car in Atlantic City for a day or two, returning the car before your departure. Other than a Hertz outlet at Harrah's Resort, rental cars are available only at the Atlantic City airport.
*subject to change, revision or cancellation
†employee may no longer work at subject property or be unavailable due to his/her specific work schedule
"Apparently, Showboat has lost sight of 'customer service.' When I tried to 'round up' my $97.45 EZ-Pay with coins, I was told that cashiers could accept only enough change to round up to the next dollar, e.g., 55 cents. This is not only inconvenient, but insulting."
Additional information about Atlantic City and the Jersey Shore is available at
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