The Blue Lake Casino and Hotel is one of many Indian casinos in the state of California, located in the northern part of the state, on in Indian reservation a short drive from the small city of Arcata on Arcata Bay.
This region is known as the Redwood Coast area of California, and this is real Northern California, not central parts of the state like the Bay Area which are known to be in Northern California but are really in the central area of the state.
So this area is indeed known for its redwood forest, a tourist attraction in itself as these trees can be massive. This is a truly beautiful part of the world, and while Blue Lake is a little inland, the beach is only a 15 minute drive away, for those who wish to experience its pleasures as well.
California casinos are very plentiful and not particularly large, there are no huge complexes run by Indians like you see in other parts of the country, like Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun in Connecticut for instance which are among the 5 biggest casinos in the world.
However, the Blue Lake Casino and Hotel offers guests a more intimate atmosphere that is plenty packed with gambling fun, which is the main reason of course people would want to visit.
California does have legal gambling outside of Indian lands, and is home to some of the biggest poker rooms in the world, particularly in the Los Angeles area, but gambling law here doesn’t look so favorably on other casino games.
In fact, the most prominent court case in the U.S. that led to the opening of Indian casinos in the country was between the state of California and a California band of Indians, and the Indians came out on top.
So the state still disapproves and disallows casino gambling other than poker, but the Indians are more than happy to exercise their sovereignty that the courts have recognized and offer their guests access to several other forms of gambling games.
Blue Lake Casino proclaims that they are the premier casino entertainment destination on the Redwood Coast, and they can make a pretty strong case for this in fact.
Blue Lake Casino Features
While this may not be a Vegas hotel by any means, Blue Lake definitely has a good hotel on their casino property, and it’s considered the finest luxury hotel in the region, although luxury is being used here comparatively.
A big appeal of Blue Lake is the nature, and the rooms here offer great views of the Mad River Valley in the heart of a pristine Redwood forest. Blue Lake itself is a very small town, with a population of only about 1200, so this is far from the big city and especially far from the Vegas strip, and guests get a much more rural feel from their stay here, which many people enjoy.
The prices are fairly reasonable, in the mid 100’s a night, which isn’t as inexpensive as some casinos, but it’s still pretty reasonable for a good hotel room these days, and you do get good value for the money. The staff here is particularly known for their friendliness, and personal service, and that alone factors into things quite a bit as far as the overall value of a hotel goes.
This really isn’t what most people would call a luxury hotel, it might be as far as other hotels in this neck of the woods, but don’t expect too much. The rooms are clean and comfortable though and the feedback from guests has been very positive overall. I don’t think that people are thinking this is the Wynn or the Bellagio, and they didn’t spend several billion on the place, but it’s a nice and fairly quaint place to get away and to gamble and also to experience more nature than you’d ever find in a city.
They also have a heated pool here, as well as an outdoor hot tub to relax in. Guests also get a free temporary membership at a nearby health club so they can maintain their workouts.
The dining options on site are fairly limited, although there are more options in Arcata, only a 10 minute drive away.
Blue Lake does have 4 different places to get food from though. Alice’s Sushi and Steak offers both sushi and American food, while the Lily Pad has more casual dining without the need to make reservations, specializing in Tex Mex.
You can also grab a quick burger or pizza at Play Station 777 and also fill up your tank with the best gas prices on the Redwood Coast. There’s also the Wave Pub, with pub style food and musical entertainment, including live acts and karaoke.
The Blue Lake Casino
The Blue Lake casino offers both smoking and non smoking slot areas, as well as a high limit room. There are 800 slots to choose from, which is a fairly impressive amount for a complex of this more modest size, and they also use the latest in air filtration technology to improve the quality of the air even in the smoking sections.
The Play Station 777 area also offers slots, in addition to the ones in the main casino.
Due to licensing agreements with the State of California, who have a strong preference for card games, all of the table games at the Blue Lake Casino are played with a deck of cards, although this does indeed provide more variation than just the poker that is permitted in non Indian facilities.
Blackjack is the most popular table game in America and it is played with cards, so they do offer that. They offer both two and six deck games, with a $1 minimum, and offer blackjack 24 hours a day. Their blackjack games offer two different bonus wagers where players can win up to $25,000 on.
They also lay out Spanish 21, a blackjack variant with more betting options, as well as Three Card Poker, Pai Gow Poker, and Ultimate Texas Holdem, a casino version of Holdem where players play against the house.
For those who like to play real poker, they have the largest poker room on the Redwood Coast, with both cash and tournament games running nightly from 6PM, 7 days a week, as well as having dealer choice games running from 12PM to 6PM on the weekends.
Overall, this is definitely a good spot to visit if you like a more intimate and laid back atmosphere, which is much more of a small town casino than most, getting back to nature and gambling at the same time, in a comfortable and friendly atmosphere.