Harrah's Kansas City Hotel and Casino
Harrah's Kansas City Hotel and Casino
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The hotel-casino is located nine miles from Kansas City International Airport, a $20 to $40 cab ride, depending on traffic conditions. A casino host can arrange transportation (which may be comped based on the customer’s level of play). Transportation is included with the Annual Retreat should you choose Harrah's North Kansas City.
Hotel overviewHarrah’s Kansas City Hotel and Casino might arguably have the prettiest entrance drive of all the Caesars properties.
Taking the well-marked exit from the highway brings you to a winding drive through beautiful wooded property with the Missouri River on the left. The first turn from the drive takes you to the casino and the second to the hotel.
NOTE: All shows, events and deadlines are subject to postponement or cancellation due to temporary casino closings and/or safety and health measures implemented by the state.
■ There is a $12 daily "amenity fee" (which is waived for Seven Stars and Diamond cardholders) that includes Internet access for up to two devices, local phone calls and admission to the fitness center.
■ If you opt out of housekeeping services during your stay (minimum two-night stay), Harrah's will give you a $5 per night food and beverage credit. You still can request additional towels or other amenities, but your bathroom will not be cleaned, bed made, etc. If you didn’t get a pre-arrival email asking you to opt-in, just let the front desk know when you check-in.
■ The ATM fee is $5.99 per transaction, plus whatever your home bank charges.
■ If you're exchanging Reward Credits for free play, just go to the Caesars Rewards Center to conduct the transaction.
■ All the food outlets are located in the casino tower. Since room service is not an option, if you're staying in the hotel you'll have to walk quite a distance to the casino to find a restaurant or take-away food.
Even by Caesars standards, this may be the friendliest crew you’ll ever meet. Everyone from the limo driver to the hotel front desk to the custodians have a genuine smile and will go out of their way for customers. The two-tower hotel complex (a non-smoking Kansas City tower and a Las Vegas tower which has smoking rooms) is separate from the casino complex. It's a bit of a walk either outdoors or indoors to get from the hotels to the casino.
While public areas seem to be generally updated and in very good shape, guestrooms are a bit tired and in need of some sprucing up. Carpets are worn/stained, furniture is dated, and walls/ceilings could use some paint.
Unless you are staying in a Boulevard Suite or higher category, your room will not have a safe. Even junior suites and VIP suites do not have safes. The lack of in-room safes seems unusual for a casino property.
The hotel no longer offers room service.
A "fitness center" has two treadmills, a Stairmaster and a stationary bike. It also has a LifeFitness pulldown machine, yoga pads on the floor, weights, towels, and a cold water dispenser. There is a window to the outside entrance which lets in light.
There is no swimming pool.
Meeting rooms are located in both towers and in the walkway connecting the hotel to the casino.
There is a 24-hour Business Center right off the main lobby with two computers which are free to use to check email, print boarding passes, etc.
Parking - Hotel self-parking is a surface lot directly in front of the hotel entrance. The hotel also offers valet parking. (Note: Valet parking is always free for Seven Stars cardholders, and sometimes free for others.)
The Las Vegas tower has two floors of suites (10 and 11) with key-restricted access. The Kansas City tower has suites on the fifth and sixth floors.
Rooms have a view of either a river or a parking lot.
Rooms in the Las Vegas tower have walk-in showers and a separate tub. Rooms in the Kansas City tower have only tubs, but they have high sides.
The hallways and rooms have a friendly brown motif.
This "show-and-tell" information card in each guestroom helps take the confusion out of signing up for Wi-Fi at Harrah's.
The two-level casino has nearly 1,400 slot machines and 60 table games. All of the newer slots such as Wonder 4 Tower, Game of Thrones and Dragon Spin are here as are single-line reel games. Machines are well-spaced so the casino floor does not have a crowded feeling.
There are two very small high limit areas, one for slots and another for table games. The four craps tables offer 100X odds behind the line and Harrah's boasts the largest mini baccarat action in the region.
There is a small non-smoking area on the upper level. However, the ventilation system works adequately so there is no excessive smoke smell in the casino.
Per Missouri regulations, there are no free alcoholic beverages on the casino floor. Casino patrons must pay cash, with no discounts for Seven Stars cardholders. A middle-shelf vodka is $5. However, drink service is frequent and efficient. In addition, there are refreshment stations on each level of the casino which provide complimentary self-serve Pepsi products and Folger's coffee.
Parking - Casino self-parking is located in a parking structure and has direct access to the second floor of the casino. The casino also offers valet parking. (Note: Valet parking is always free for Seven Stars cardholders, and sometimes free for others.)
'37 Steak was Harrah's fine dining restaurant, but it's been transformed into a Gordon Ramsay Steak.
Winning Streaks serves a variety of fast food and other options.
There is an Asian restaurant, Royal Noodle House, inside the casino.
For coffees, breakfast items, sandwiches, pizza, salads, burgers and more, there is the Bite & Bean across from the buffet.
All restaurants offer food to go.
Voodoo Lounge is the casino's nightclub.
Special Seven Stars benefits*
There is a special Seven Stars/Diamond check-in at the hotel, dedicated line at the buffet, priority valet parking service, and dedicated lines at the casino cashier. Seven Stars cardholders get complimentary access to the Laurel Lounge (formerly Diamond Lounge) and General Manager’s Club (see below).
Seven Stars Lounge
There is no Seven Stars Lounge, only a Laurel Lounge and General Manager's Club.
Both clubs are complimentary for Seven Stars cardholders. Otherwise, the General Manager’s Club is open only to Diamond cardholders who have earned 50,000 tier credits in the current or prior year. Management puts a stamp of the front of your Caesars Rewards card indicating that the bearer qualifies for access to the Club and limited complimentary cocktails in the Laurel Lounge.
Once you check in, you can return as many times as you wish.
The Laurel Lounge offers salad at 4 p.m. and, beginning at 5 p.m., a changing dinner menu that can range from spaghetti to tacos. There is a cash bar for Diamond cardholders, but drinks are complimentary for Seven Stars cardholders.
The smaller General Manager's Club is located next to the Laurel Lounge through a separate door to the right of the bar. Though the club is open seven days a week, food is served only on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
One person who was here recently found it "dingy, crowded and claustrophobic. The tables are set much too close to each other. It is far more pleasant to sit in the Laurel Lounge, either in the reserved Seven Stars area or the regular area."
The Laurel Lounge is open 3 to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The General Manager's Club is open Thursday through Saturday from 3 to 10 p.m. (Hours subject to change.)
On days when the General Manager's Club is open, in order to get a complimentary beverage, Seven Stars cardholders and General Manager's Club members must order from a server in the General Manager's Club or the Seven Stars section of the Laurel Lounge.
Inside are big-screen TVs, tables and chairs, and a video game. Drinks, from the bar in the Laurel Lounge, are complimentary, but are limited to four (eight if they bring a guest). The General Manager's Club has cheese and crackers, as well as a separate food offering beginning at 5 p.m. It's generally better than the offerings in the Laurel Lounge; however, there is no salad bar. On game days the food is usually tailgate fare.
When a casino or event drawing occurs, winners' names are displayed and/or announced in the Laurel Lounge and GM Club.
Should you choose this for your Annual Retreat?
If you want to visit Kansas City, this is a good way to do it.
Among the attractions Kansas City offers are the National World War I Museum and Memorial, the Shoal Creek Living History Museum, the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, the Arabia Steamboat Museum, Union Station, the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, the Kansas City Zoo, the Boulevard Brewing Co., The National Museum of Toys and Miniatures and SEA LIFE Aquarium.
Ameristar, Argosy and Isle of Capri casinos also are within a few miles. But you will need a car to go anywhere off property that is interesting.
As always, when you check-in, be sure to verify that your $500 comp account has been set-up. Alcohol charged to the room does not count toward your $500 in expenses, but gratuities may be charged to your room and settled at check-out with your credit card on file. Any taxes on food are waived, and not counted toward your $500 in allowable expenses. Best advice is to keep all your receipts until you settle your final bill.
*subject to change, revision or cancellation
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This Pony Express Statue greets guests at Harrah's. One of two original bronze sculptures by Avard Fairbanks, commissioned by William F. Harrah, it recognizes and celebrates the Pony Express. The statue at Lake Tahoe – 196 miles from the Pony Express Western Terminus in San Francisco – was dedicated on April 4, 1963. This statue, dedicated April 3, 2010, stands only 50 miles from the Eastern Terminus at St. Joseph, Mo.