From the name, you might think that the San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino would be just a bingo hall with perhaps a small casino attached, but this is about as far from the case as you can get. This is the biggest casino in California and the fourth largest in the United States, bigger than anything they have in Las Vegas in fact as far as the size of their casino goes.
The bingo hall and casino is owned and operated by the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, with their reservation located in San Bernardino County, California. There are over 2 million people that live in this county, with another over 2 million in Riverside County to the south, Orange County’s 3 million people to the southwest, and to the east, Los Angeles County, the largest county in the U.S. with over 10 million people.
So the San Manuel Reservation is within easy driving distance of a great many people, and a lot of people in Southern California love to gamble, and if you’re going to gamble at casino games in California, you are going to have to do it at an Indian casino. So it’s not a surprise why this casino is as big as it is, being located in such a prime area.
The San Manuel Reservation is located just outside of Highland, California, a suburb of San Bernardino, at the foot of the San Bernardino mountains. The tribe have been governing themselves since back in the Gold Rush days, and they have extended their sovereignty to offer casino gaming now, like several other California tribes.
It was the California Indians that broke the first ground on Indian casino gaming, and in particular, the Mission Indians, which the San Manuel band is a member of. A nearby band started to offer casino games in addition to bingo, and were sued by the state, and won in federal court, opening the door for Indian gaming across the country.
With so many people so close by, there isn’t even a need for a hotel here, this is a pure casino, although they have no trouble attracting a lot of people to it, over 2 million guests per year in fact. Who needs a hotel when that many people can just drive up for the day.
The Amenities of the San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino
With this many people coming to the casino, they are bound to be hungry, and the San Manuel Indians offers several places to eat on their property, and is home to some of the best restaurants in the Inland Empire, the metropolitan area of 4 million people in which this casino is located in.
With all the money that changes hands here, the San Manuel Indians don’t fool around with their dining establishments, as they realize that if you offer people both great food and great gaming, they will keep coming, and they certainly do.
The Pines Modern Steakhouse may be the best restaurant in the area period, with the freshness of farm to fork cuisine, featuring wet aged premium beef and fresh from the sea seafood, along with the finest wines and spirits. They also offer ultra modern décor as well as popular DJs nightly from 5 to 10 PM to provide musical entertainment to go along with your meal.
The Serrano Buffet offers guests an unforgettable all you can eat dining experience, with prices ranging from $14.99 to $29.99 per person. The food at this buffet is outstanding and not the usual fare you would expect at a buffet restaurant.
Other dining options include the Snack Shack, the Sportswatch Grill, Street Tacos, and Tutu’s Food Court, with sandwiches, a burger joint, as well as a Mexican and an Asian fast food restaurant.
The Turkit Lounge offers free entertainment every night of the week, including comedy and musical acts, salsa dancing, and karaoke.
While there is no hotel on the premises, they do provide a free shuttle to the nearby Hampton Inns and Suites, and guests of the casino receive a 20% discount on room rates there, as well as other promotions geared toward the many visitors of this huge casino.
There are also quite a few in house promotions, on the casino games, on bingo, and on dining.
The Gaming at the Sam Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino
The casino here is certainly the centerpiece of this property, much more so than at other casinos, because this really is just a casino with a few restaurants attached to it. It’s a very big casino though, with 220,000 square feet of gaming space.
This bingo hall and casino has been in operation since 1986, first just offering bingo but later expanding into casino games as well. They have certainly expanded a lot and are now one of the premier gaming destinations in all of California.
If you enjoy slots, you will find 3,700 of them here, which makes their slot area one of the biggest in not just the state, but in the world. This includes 220 video poker machines.
Whatever you want to play, they have it here, including the very latest. They have both smoking and non smoking slot areas, whatever your preference. There’s also plenty of progressive jackpot machines which regularly pay out big jackpots to their players.
The table games are limited to card games, as is the case everywhere in California, but they do have 7 different types of games here, including Blackjack, EZ Blackjack, Let It Ride, Three Card Poker, Four Card Poker, and Fortune Pai Gow, in addition to both roulette and craps played with cards.
Their spacious 38 table poker room offers a variety of both cash and tournament poker, along with food and beverage service. They run a special promotion with their poker here where you can win your share of $100,000 in extra prize money.
Bingo has always been at the center of the action here, and it still is, and if you like to play bingo you surely will be delighted here. Their state of the art 1,400 seat bingo hall offers plenty of bingo 7 days a week.
The casino also has a high limit room, with 5,000 square feet filled with luxury as well as 8 gaming tables and 68 high limit slot machines, in addition to premium food and cocktails.
Overall, this is certainly one of California’s better Indian casinos, and offers players non stop action within easy driving distance of a very large population.