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Blackjack Insider Newsletter, April 2005, #63


By LVBear

Las Vegas blackjack player, casino critic, and frequent contributor LVBear offers his opinions on things that sometimes go wrong in the world of casinos. He can be reached at

Praise, not a growl, for new management at Binion’s

The management contract with Harrah’s has expired, and owner MTR Gaming is now managing Binion’s in Las Vegas (formerly known at the Horseshoe).

My observations there have been a pleasant surprise.  Instead of continuing the Harrah’s business model of offering terrible games and trying to fleece the patrons as quickly as possible, Binion’s has reintroduced a half-dozen real single deck blackjack games (though two 6 to 5 ripoff tables remain) and otherwise improved playing conditions dramatically compared to the wasteland created by Harrah’s.

The popular snack bar, which was closed by Harrah’s, has been reopened.  The steak house on the 24th floor is excellent.  Parking is again easy to validate, as it was before Harrah’s made it a hassle.

Though management has already demonstrated intolerance of skilled blackjack play, at least there are decent games to play, and so far management has shown that it understands the wisdom of not slowing down the games by constant shuffling.  I hope this enlightened management style does well for Binion’s.  If they stay the course, it will.  The crowds of patrons that Harrah’s chased off are returning.  Good to see. Good for downtown.  Good for Binion's.

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