There are quite a few Indian casinos in Southern California, with many of them boasting locations that are poised to take care of the huge population base here. In the case of the Spotlight 29 casino, it actually is in an area which does get quite a bit of tourists so to speak, people from the greater Los Angeles area, who come to the Palm Springs area for a number of reasons, and may want to do some gambling while they are there.
The Coachella Valley in Southern California is east of both the metropolitan Los Angeles area and the San Bernardino-Riverside-Ontario area, in the area of Palm Springs, which is part of the valley. Palm Springs is a hugely popular spot, and overall the area gets over 3.5 million tourists a year, mostly from conventions, and these people do tend to like to gamble.
The Spotlight 29 Casino is located in the small city of Coachella, the easternmost city in the Coachella Valley, 28 miles east of Palm Springs. This provides easy access to all the folks who visit the area, as well as being within easy driving distance for millions of people who live just to the west of here.
It is owned and operated by the Twenty Nine Palms band of Mission Indians on their reservation here, which is where the number 29 in the casino’s name comes from. This is one of the largest casinos in California, and the United States as well for that matter, at least in terms of square footage of gaming space.
Having 1,600 slot and gaming machines and 22 table games spread across such a vast space does allow for a very uncramped setting where players are free to enjoy their favorite casino games while still enjoying some great personal space, much like the more rural nature of the area contrasts with the densely populated cities to the west.
The Spotlight Casino was built in 1995, and have undergone several renovations and expansions since to bring it to its current size and popularity. At one time, the casino was called Trump 29 Casino, in the time between 2001 and 2006 when they partnered with Donald Trump.
At the time, the Spotlight 29 was one of the smallest casinos in the Coachella Valley, but Donald Trump saw potential in it, and stepped up to invest in the project. Many worried that the savvy Trump would exploit the tribe, but now the feeling is that the tribe got the better part of this deal in the end.
The partnership with Trump was later dissolved by the tribe and they returned back to the original name of Spotlight 29, and have not seen their success slow down since.
The Features of the Spotlight 29 Casino
Spotlight 29 Casino, as the name suggests, is pretty much just a casino. There’s no big hotel, or any hotel, there’s no spa or other resort features, and although they do have a few restaurants and a showroom, this is a far cry from a Las Vegas strip resort or even some of the bigger Indian casino resorts in the state.
Indian casinos in California, and especially those in Southern California, tend to be mostly casinos anyway, and there are so many people here that there’s generally no need to have a hotel or resort to bring in the traffic, they just drive there and gamble.
Casino players do get hungry though and their needs are taken care of here with 5 different restaurants to choose from. Those in the mood for steak can check out the JEM Steakhouse and their mouth watering selection of steaks, open Wednesday through Sunday from 4 PM to 7 PM.
The Café Capitana is open every day and features several buffet specials, including a BBQ buffet on Monday, a Mexican one on Wednesday, a seafood and prime rib buffet on Friday, and a prime rib buffet on Saturday. They offer reasonable prices in a casual dining setting.
Pizza 29 is open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and offers both full pizzas and pizza by the slice. Chava’s Mexican Grill brings a little piece of Mexico to the casino. Kitchen 88 delivers Asian inspired dishes from Wednesday to Sunday.
Groups can also take advantage of the Medjool Room, offering full service banquets and seating for 300.
The Spotlight Showroom is a large one with a capacity of 2,200 and has regular live entertainment, featuring both tribute bands and the real thing, and many big names of yesteryear perform here regularly.
There are 3 bars and lounges on hand as well. You can dance the night away at either the Blue Bar or the nostalgic Groove, or enjoy sporting events on huge screen TV’s as well as enjoy your favorite drinks at the Hot Spot.
The Casino at Spotlight 29 Casino
The casino is the real reason people come here, and they do come here in large numbers. Like just about every casino, there’s a rewards program, and the one here is called Club 29. New members get treated to a free $40 in gaming credits, $20 up front and $20 more after they have had a chance to better experience the casino here.
There are three membership levels, gold, platinum, and titanium, and even the gold card members are well taken care of with a numerous amount of promotions, free play, and other perks, as well as access to the casino hosts here.
While a lot of casinos have casino hosts on hand to ensure that their VIP players are kept happy, at Casino 29, everyone is in this category and their several hosts work hard to ensure everyone gets the most out of their stay with them and are kept wanting to come back.
The casino here also offers quite a number of general promotions, including slot tournaments and plenty of giveaways, and it’s important to their business that people are kept satisfied and excited here.
There are 1,600 of the hottest and most popular slots on hand, and there’s also plenty of jackpots to be won at them. Even the smallest players are important to this casino, and they have the most penny slots of any casino in the area. In addition to slots, you can also enjoy video poker and video keno machines, as well as bingo style slots.
The 22 table games on hand include single and multi deck, Blackjack, Spanish 21, Ultimate Texas Holdem, Fortune Pai Gow, and Mystery Card Roulette, played with a deck of cards to conform with the state’s preference for cards only casino gambling.
Minimum bets range from $5 to $25, making them the most player friendly you’ll see at any casino anywhere. $5 is pretty much the lowest bet that a casino can take and still make money at, and they do have them here. You can always find a $5 table running here.
While there’s no poker room or sports book here, and thus the casino gambling is limited to just slot and table games, what they do have is of good quality, and the customer service and friendliness here really has them standing out. Expect to be well taken care of here and don’t expect to be disappointed.