The Black Oak Resort and Casino is one of Northern California’s largest casino resorts, with 164,000 square feet of gaming space, comparable to the biggest casinos in Las Vegas. It also features a 164 room hotel, and this is located in a rather isolated area of the state, about three and a half hours drive from the Bay Area. So they don’t get a lot of day players like many large California Indian casinos that are located near large metropolitan areas do.
This is in the Sierra Nevada mountains, near Yosemite National Park, and not a lot of people live anywhere nearby. It is located in the small town of Tuolumne, with a population of only about 1000 people, and the population of the entire Tuolumne county is only about 55,000, so the Black Oak pretty much caters to just tourists.
There are several other hotels and motels in the area though so not all their players stay here, but this is certainly the finest hotel in the region so a lot of players do choose their nice accommodations. It isn’t easy to get a room here actually, and you have to book well in advance.
Based upon that, the Black Oak could probably stand to be expanded, and their hotel was just built in 2013, so it might be a while before we see more rooms added, but in the mean time this is a very popular spot for people to both gamble and spend some time getting away from the city and do a little vacationing in the mountains.
The Black Oak Casino Resort is owned and operated by the Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians, on their reservation here. The reservation, or rancheria as they call it here, was established in 1910, and has a population of 168 Indians. The casino resort has certainly brought a lot of new prosperity to this small band of Indians, as casinos have generally to other Indian bands in this gambling hungry state.
This isn’t the biggest casino by any means as far as big California Indian casinos go, but the appeal of this one lies in the fact that they offer genuine vacations, in a place where a lot of people would visit if not for the casino gambling they offer, which does provide a very nice bonus to your stay though if you do fancy gambling.
The Features of the Black Oak Casino Resort
This is a new and very nice hotel, which features luxury rooms, with a modern décor and a good selection of amenities. Rooms are available in both king and double queen configurations, with rates starting at $129 per night, which is pretty reasonable given the fact that they don’t really have any competition out here and especially with their rooms being in such high demand.
This hotel is billed as an escape, and it truly is, with its rural setting and the beautiful Sierra Nevada Mountains in the background. The air is very clean here, a refreshing change from all the smog that many Californians have to deal with on a day to day basis.
Although there’s only five restaurants here, they provide plenty of good options for guests to enjoy themselves even on extended stays. The Black Oak Café offers a large selection of different meals, including a daily buffet. They don’t have a full time buffet restaurant but this one does a good job at substituting.
The Seven Sisters is the jewel of this casino resort, which offers award winning fine dining for those who don’t mind spending more for high quality food. It’s only open 5 days of the week, closed Monday and Tuesday, with limited hours on the days they are open, but when they are, you do want to sample their gourmet food, with main courses ranging from $32 to $75 a plate.
The Mains Sports Bar and Grill will allow you to enjoy some good food while catching your favorite sporting events, and also check out their extensive selection of sports memorabilia.
Kingpin offers a family oriented menu, located close to their Family Fun center. This resort really does cater to the whole family, and many guests bring their kids along for the trip.
Jumping Coyote is the resident coffee shop which also serves up fruit smoothies and even cocktails, in addition to their great coffee.
The bowling alley here features 24 lanes, and there’s also an underground arcade for the kids. They also plan parties for them which includes plenty of both as well as lots to eat.
For the adults, Black Oak features live entertainment every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights at their 250 seat, state of the art Willow Creek Lounge.
You can also pick up authentic Native American crafts as the Gift Basket. While there is no spa here, they do offer in room massages to help you unwind from all the fun you’ll have here.
The Casino at the Black Oak
Black Oak offers their guests entry into their Player’s Club, who are eligible for either a Classic, Gold, Platinum, or Diamond card, depending on your level of play here. Rewards earned can be used either at the casino, at their dining rooms, at the hotel, or at their gift shop.
They also run several promotions at their casino where players can get even more value out of their casino play by taking advantage of these. Among the things offered are cash and merchandise prizes, slot tournaments, 5 times the points on Thursdays, and special incentives for those 50 years of age and older.
There are 1,250 slot machines on hand here, with in house progressive jackpots of up to $75,000. Stakes go up to $100 a spin and have everything to delight everyone, from the smallest players to high rollers.
There are 26 different gaming tables here, which is only a modest amount, but they do have a fairly good selection of different games, including Blackjack, 3 Card Poker, 4 Card Poker, Ultimate Texas Holdem, Fortune Pai Gow, and Mini Baccarat. They have a weekly blackjack tournament as well as daily ones for those over 50.
There’s also a live poker room here, catering to all ranges of players, and featuring not only cash tables but a good selection of poker tournaments for a poker room this size, including their Super Sunday Deepstack Tournament that runs the last Sunday of every month, with a $100+$10 buy in.
Black Oak also has the largest smoke free gaming area in Northern California, with 384 slot machines.
Visiting the Black Oak really is like a breath of fresh air, set in beautiful country, with a nice hotel and some nice food and casino gambling, and even lots for the kids to do as well.