Thursday, February 20, 2014
Off-Strip: The Gold Coast
The Gold Coast is on West Flamingo, with the Palms across the street on one side of it, and the Rio across Valley View on the other. It's held its own against these behemoths for decades, as a favorite locals joint. It's especially dear to me because, while free room offers from other casinos would dry up as years passed between my visits, the Gold Coast would faithfully keep sending me offers for two free nights, plus a $25 food credit and a free $30 bet each day. They never lost faith in me, bless their heart. It's an older hotel (you can open some of the windows on the higher floors, in case things don't go well at the tables) but the rooms have been fixed up real nice. They have a bowling alley, and, like the Orleans, on Super Bowl day they hosted a free viewing party in their ballrooms. There are low table minimums ($5 blackjack, $1 roulette with a $3 minimum total bet), the double-deck rules are generous, and I can point you to the $1 Wheel of Fortune machine where I once hit a $500 spin on the Wheel. Like The Orleans, it's part of the B Connected player's card program, and your card gets you a discount on the buffet, so for Friday seafood night (piles of crab legs and crawfish, peel-and-eat shrimp, shrimp cocktail, shrimp ceviche, shrimp salad...) it's $19.99, but the next night's New York steak buffet is only $9.99. It's a perfectly good buffet. Other dining options are a T.G.I. Friday's, the Cortez Room for fine dining at moderate prices, a Subway, Java Vegas (for coffee and ice cream), Noodle Exchange, and Ping Pang Pong, which some consider the best Chinese restaurant in town...and if you doubt the Gold Coast draws heavily from the local and imported Asian population, check out the racks by the men's room full of Chinese-language newspapers. The Gold Coast can also take the credit for my achieving an upgrade to Sapphire status on my player's card, due in no small part I'm sure to the $1000 bet that let me break even at the roulette table.