Report: #174143

Complaint Review: Harrah's Cherokee Casino

  • Submitted: Tue, January 31, 2006
  • Updated: Tue, March 06, 2012
  • Reported By: Knoxville Tennessee
  • Harrah's Cherokee Casino
    777 Casino Dr
    Cherokee, North Carolina
  • Phone: 828-497-7777
  • Web:
  • Category: Casinos

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

Iplay at harrah's in Metropolis, and in Tunica, as well as Atlantic City. I have always had a good time until I started going to Harrah's in Cherokee, NC. The first problem is the coupons they send, you can never use them. This is so bad that our local news reporter Don Dare from WATE Channel 6in Knoxville done a consumer story on the complaints.

This Harrah's is actually owned and operated by the Cherokee Indian tribe and they pay to use the Harrah's name as well as some Harrah's management, but mostly indians. The food at the market express is horrible in taste, texture and quality. A very small Cheeseburger by its-self is over 6.00 with tax. A dinner buffet is close to 20.00 and its hard to earn complimentaries.

They only have slots and digital machines that are hard to understand at times and are different than any other casino I have ever been too. The hotel is fairly new and nice but they tell you they have no availability when you try to use one of their coupons but you can call right back and get a room for 159.00 if you pay for it.

They oversell their rooms and try to put you in a Best Western or some other cheap hotel miles from the casino. Then if you complain they tell you that you have a choice that you don't have to come here. They are the only casino for miles and miles around.

If you try to get a hold of a manager to complain you are directed to Bonnie Garlock and you always get her voice mail and she never returns calls. Even though the lady named Madge in Total Rewards was a real sweethart and propably had the best attitude in Cherokee, she really had no authority to handle any complaints.

The bus lobby had two nice employees I had to mention, Margaret and Linda, they were super nice. If you don't ride a bus tour to the Casino, I guess your screwed. My experiences at this casino were so bad insted of driving the 110 miles from home in East Tennessee, I drive 254 miles to one of the casinos in Indiana, or drive 330 miles to next closest Harrah's in Metroplolis, Ill.

I cannot beleive that Harrah's corporate in Las Vegas lets these greedy indians in Cherokee ruin their good name. When I spoke with a lady in Corporate they told me they strive to handle customer service issues, but informed me that Cherokee location was actually handled in house because its operated by the indian tribe.

In short if you want to be screwed by the indians, and spend alot of money ...this casino should be your destination. Oh by the way take your own alcohol, its dry up there on the indian reservation, and after your visit you'll need a few drinks.

Knoxville, Tennessee
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 01/31/2006 05:40 PM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment

Not Changing

AUTHOR: Chris - ()

Not changing at all. Only in atmosphere, payback percentages are the lowest of any casino because profits have to be split between Cherokee Indians and Harrah's who operates. You don't stand a chance here.

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#2 UPDATE Employee

Things are changing,.....

AUTHOR: I live here.... - (United States of America)

Since that persons report, the casino has gotten alcohol. They are working very hard to have live dealers and games and are almost there. It does have something to do with the state. So if you need to complain about something like that. Check the state laws beforehand. We are working very hard to become resort statis. I do work there so I know how some people are. Say they do lose some money, they come in to the area I work and take it out on me. They are hateful and demanding. It isn't our fault you lost your money we only work there. We try to be kind and helpful to everybody but some people simply refuse to be nice. It isn't that we don't want to help you, sometimes you just make it impossible. I know before I worked there, I only played penny machines and I would win 30.00 and quit. I got free meals so it isn't all that hard to get comps. You also get a comp meal for your birthday. The hotel is mainly for high rollers. There will soon be other restaurants so it won't be limited to what we have now. We will have a spa in the hotel also. You just have to be patient. As for the casino putting people up in other motels, those motels have shuttle to the casino. Probably a lot easier then parking in the garage or parking lot and having to find your car. As for the casino, they got it to make their reservation more self sufficient. They don't depend on welfare and things like that to help them. They try to help themselves. The casino has health insurance for all the kids until they are 18. They didn't have that before. They help the community and give back. They help the surrounding counties also. They provide year around jobs for a lot of people and that didn't used to be. In the winter, they had to go on unemployment. They don't now. I think it is a great place for entertainment. It is for entertainment, not spending all your life savings. They even have great concerts and entertainment at the bars during the week. Oh yes, and they have since built more hotel towers.   
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#3 General Comment

I agree Harrah Cherokee took me to the bank! AGAIN AND AGAIN AND AGAIN

AUTHOR: The real thing and i am sorry - (U.S.A.)

I agree with you in so many ways,I was compelled to gamble for over two YEARS,I lost over 5,000 (I know I am lucky) lol... It could have been more but I was lucky I learned to walk away,How does a person take 100 one night turn it into a thousand then POOF! The next week,play the same game and loose it all again: Well it's really simple: rigged games.. AND STUPIDITY.. lol the author is right,they NEVER have rooms yet you call? they do if you PAY.. yet they still say they don't have "comp" rooms aval. I went in July (my bday) and was offered $50 IN FREE FOOD. I got the WORST ROOM SERVICE EVER! The grl stole money from m... ect I am one THAT WILL NEVER EVER GO BACK.
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#4 Consumer Comment

Response to Diamond Member Likes Harrah's Cherokee Just Fine

AUTHOR: Chuck - (United States of America)

I have gambled at casinos all over the world and without question Harrah's Cherokee is the worst value I've seen anywhere.  The person who reported that they're a Diamond True Rewards member and that they never, ever have a problem getting treated well didn't reach Diamond status by playing nickle slots.  You become Diamond by selling your house or blowing your life savings.  Of course the Diamond level players are treated well - they're dropping off a tremendous amount of money on each visit and getting trinkets in return.  I made the mistake of stopping there again last weekend.  (I know - nobody's putting a gun to my head.  I keep telling myself that surely it won't be this bad again.  Wrong).  Another $300 lost, but I did score about $2 worth of comp credits!  The problem is that there's no competition, and that Harrah's properties are generally stingy with their comp policies.  Compare ANY Harrah's anywhere to Island View in Gulfport, MS, for example.  It's independently owned and you never feel like you're being taken advantage of.  Add the huge burden of providing significant subsidies to tribal members, and you can see why it's like it is.  In fact, if you or I owned a casino and people continue to come regardless of the value, why would we do any more than we had to?  A few years ago a gambling magazine rated Cherokee as the worst odds of any casino in North America.  Play there once and you'll understand.  The antidote is more competition and just plain not going there until it starts providing value.  They have absolutely no reason to change.
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#5 UPDATE Employee

Harrah's Cherokee is regulated by state and Fed's.

AUTHOR: Pissed Off - (U.S.A.)

To be completely honest, this is the only casino I have ever set foot in. However, I do see customers throughout my entire shift. Most are very happy and know that gambling is a form of entertainment. The odds are in the favor of the house...everyone knows that!

Now, the Qualla Boundary (The 'reservation") is dry (no alcohol sales) as is the county it is in. That has been the law for decades. Local are trying to change that, but for now, Cherokee is dry.

We definitely want "live card" games! However, again, the state has the casino regulated by laws. I don't remember the wording, but basically, the casino can only have digital games. Something about the difference between games of chance and games of skill. This is not the doing of Harrah's OR Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI). The last time the tribe approached the governor about allowing real card games, the state decided they wanted a HUGE chunk of the earnings from those games....more than was ever discussed in prior meetings. Rightfully so, the tribe said, "No!"

Maybe now that there is a new governor coming into office....and the casino is in the middle of a huge expansion....we can agree to get on with being a REAL casino.

I have to confess, being an employee, I don't want alcohol sales to pass. If you really need alcohol to enjoy yourself, maybe you need to rethink drinking. Besides, if we give/sell alcohol, those who gripe about losing will surely swear we plied them with alcohol to get more money from them while they were drunk and vulnerable!

This is NOT how the EBCI wants things...the state has all the power.
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#6 Consumer Comment

The truth about Harrah's in Cherokee !!

AUTHOR: Christopherhill - (U.S.A.)

Harrah's Cherokee is getting a raw deal here. I have been a Diamond Member/Player since 1999. I have never, not once had a problem useing my coupons. I have never had nothing but great service from the time I drive up at Valet, to checking into the great hotel, to being greeted every time I've entered the casino, from the Total Rewards Center, to VIP services, or from guest safety, or from the Casino Hosts. These are all professional employees at Harrah's Cherokee. There are too many to single out. I will tell you from experience that Ms Bonnie Garlock and Kendra in the Customer service Department really do care about any complaints they may receive. I have never had a problem reaching anyone at this Harrah's Property. The Cherokee Indians do benefit from this casino. Harrah's does have top notch management in place. I would like to point toward Tom O'Donnell who is the GM he is from the s****..
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#7 Consumer Suggestion

State Gaming Laws?

AUTHOR: Roy - (U.S.A.)

There is a possibility that state gaming laws only allow the casinos to provide slot machines. I know in Arizona they were that way for a long time until the state approved additional games. Just a thought but check into the laws in the state before you bash the casino for not having additional games. They make plenty of money off each game so why else would they not want additional money makers.
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#8 Consumer Comment

have the gall to call it a "Casino"? Slot machines are the most lucrative for any casino

AUTHOR: Adolph - (U.S.A.)

The Casino in Cherokee, NC. No gaming tables, only slots, and they have the gall to call it a "Casino"? Slot machines are the most lucrative for any casino. At least at some of the gaming tables the patrons (still play at a statistical disadvantage to the house) but have much better odds in their favor. After the first stop there for a "look-see", I never even entered the casino on subsequent trips.
At the risk of offending some, any dummy can play a "slot". Gaming tables require some degree of sobriety and intelligence to be played at the patron's best advantage. Slots? Drunk, sober, frontal lobotomy, makes no difference. Skill is not a factor.Most people don't realize the winning status (if any) is determined as soon as the money is put in the slot machine. All the spinning wheels and bling-bling is pure hype and cosmetics.
Actually, I can highly recommend the Cherokee casino parking lot- as a good stop over to park my motorhome for a couple of days after a ride through the Smoky Mtn. N'tl.park and motorcycling on the Blue Ridge Parkway!(THAT'S living!).But...... then it soon gets boooor-ing!
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