Saturday, October 27, 2012

Horse Poo At The Horseshoe

I admit, I enjoy gambling. I think more cultured people refer to it as gaming. I love roulette, craps, black jack and my personal guilty pleasure at the Horseshoe Casino in Cleveland is the Clue video slot game. Usually, I call out slot players for being whimpy, but it really is a great game.

The last few trips to the Horseshoe have been less than fun. Last trip, I had to endure Rosie & Rocco's Meatball Fiasco. I need to add, that after reading my blog post, Chef Rocco contacted me, apologized for my sad meatball tragedy and wanted to make it right with his restaurant. Perfect and fair response.

Today however, I am frustrated beyond belief with the Horseshoe and the lack of customer service.

After brunch, I stopped by to partake in some Clue. Seriously, it is a fun game. After playing for awhile, I realized I was there well past the 30 minute mark for the "free buffet" and thought it would be great to invite my aunt down. I played for another 20 minutes or so, and wandered down to redeem my voucher for a free buffet and to call my aunt. I stood in line, swiped my card and nothing. I swiped again and it sneered that I needed more tier points. I finally found someone downstairs to explain it to me and she said that it may not register yet and I could go up to one of the Total Rewards lines. So, up I went to the first line that snaked around and around. A staffer told the line that there was another counter upstairs. Silly me, I figured that line might be shorter. Imagine my surpise when the line upstairs was twice as long as the one downstairs. Ugh.

I went back downstairs and stood in line again. After a few minutes another staffer walked the line and was calling for different levels and told everyone to have their ids ready. This was the point that my eye started to twitch. I followed her, and when I caught up to her, I rattled off the issue with the tier thing to which she told me I could check it myself.

Looking at her like a deer in headlights, she took pity on me and showed me how to check my own balance, to which she said yeah, you are 2 points short. The look on my face showed my confusion and she explained I needed to spend another ten dollars or so.

Taking a deep breath, I explained that I played for about 50 minutes and the signs and billboards said it was 30 minutes. Her response? "Yeah, that is really misleading and people complain about it all the time." I tried to fight my case but she said it was just how they did it and walked away.

Let's stop for a minute here. At this point, my frustration rolling off me in waves of alternating annoyance and crankiness, the staffer could have tried to make the situation right. Call for a manager, apologize, sympathize with my frustration, anything. But instead she walked away.

Not the best move in my opinion. I have worked in the service industry the majority of my life and the one thing I know for sure is if you are crappy to people, they will not come back. Whether gaming, tacos or car parts, there is always somewhere else to go.

At this point, it was not about the buffet. My goal was to have a piece of cheesecake and chat with my aunt. I walked away, trying to find someone else to talk to and when I came back there were now two different staffers at the end of the line. I politely asked for a manager, and the woman responded, that is me.

Oh boy.

I started the conversation by saying I was a little ticked, and went into the story again. The manager's counterpart turned away and wanted no part of the conversation, which was not cool, but I'm sure she told him as such later.

The response from the manager was that it was easier to market the promotion by just saying play 30 minutes get whatever free than to go into the additional requirement of tier play 9the amount of money you are spending). My right eye started to bulge a little and I could hear the blood pump through my head. I pleaded my case at how ridiculous and misleading it was that the ads say one thing, but the requirements are another. She again told me how it was easier to market the promotion and that it "usually works out" because if people are playing for 30 minutes that they will spend a certain amount.

Taking a deep breath, I repeated what the ads said and she again repeated what the marketing department did.

The end result was her looking at me repeating the line of what regular game play was and me asking why bother come to the Horseshoe when I can go to one of the slot places in strip malls.

I walked away, frustrated and I may have even flung my arms in the air in frustration.

Once again, this all could have been solved with an apology. Maybe saying, "I can see how that would be frustrating" something. But instead, they did nothing.

Now I have to ask myself, why deal with the headache of parking, the drive downtown and crappy service when I can go to the Lucky Penny in Brunstucky where they will at least give me a hot dog? This isn't really about the buffet or free parking or a tshirt or other knick knack. This is about treating people appropriately and doing what you say you will.

At the very least, the Horseshoe needs to either change their marketing or arm their staff with the tools they need to take care of customer service issues.


  1. I haven't made it to the Casino yet, but this certainly isn't encouraging me to run down there. I'm already complaining about the cost of parking downtown now. Think I'll give it a pass. Shame on you, Horseshoe Casino!

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