The Gold Strike Casino Resort opened back in 1994 and is a property of MGM Resort International, similar to the Beau Rivage Resort and Casino (See my trip report on that property here). This property has 1,100 oversized rooms that include 125 suites, a 50,000 sq. ft. casino, and a conference and convention center. Interestingly, this was the tallest building in Mississippi at the time of its opening and still is the third tallest today. The Gold Strike is only about 35 minutes from downtown Memphis and Memphis International Airport (MEM).
The World Series of Poker (WSOP) is a spectacle. And it happened at this hotel recently. One of the biggest highlights is being able to play in an official event where you can earn yourself a coveted ring or bracelet. I spent some time with friends visiting from Chicago; one of them had the opportunity to play in his first ever WSOP event.
To help keep costs down during this fun weekend, I was able to cash in on some free nights at Gold Strike Casino Resort. Here’s my review of the room at MGM Gold Strike.
How I Paid For My Stay At MGM Gold Strike
For my stay, I was given a comp rate for the two nights at the property as an elite status member. However, I was still on the hook for the $16.05 resort fee that was charged per night. We also used my $50 buffet comp for Saturday brunch without any issue. I charged this and the resort fees to my World of Hyatt Credit Card which earns 4 points per dollar at MGM properties.
Want to know how to earn a $50 buffet credit each month at MGM’s Mississippi properties? See my complete status matching guide.
Room Specific Ratings
Using the hotel room scorecard, I broke down the individual elements of my two non-smoking Queen Room on the 14th floor at the Gold Strike, which scored a rather mediocre 24 out of 40 points.
Hotel Location (1/5)
For those that are in the area, one of the biggest misconceptions of Tunica is that the casinos are close together similar to Las Vegas. That is the case for only three properties: Gold Strike, Horseshoe Tunica, and Tunica Roadhouse (recently closed, except for the hotel). The doors of these properties are only a few feet from each other. This makes it easy to bounce between them as we slept at the Gold Strike and played cards at Horseshoe Tunica.
However, beyond those three properties there is nothing else within walking distance. This makes it difficult if you do not have access to a car. Even then, there isn’t much else in Tunica County to do or restaurants to eat at, besides visiting the casinos.
We did end up at the Ten10 Bar and Lounge at the conclusion of each night located within the Gold Strike. We went here mainly due to the fact that they have an above average whiskey selection. This bar is also tucked back a bit from the casino and provided a decent place to hold a conversation away from the noise. Prices for whiskey were reasonable and the service at the bar was very good. I didn’t give the bartender any reason to remember me, but he greeted me the second evening by name.
In-Room Lighting (3/5)
Overall, this room was moderately bright and had a few different choices of lighting. I enjoyed that there were multiple lamps throughout the room including a few by the desk which would provide enough light to work at. However, a big downside was there was no overhead light, except in the entrance way. I did really appreciate the dark curtains that provided plenty of darkness that allowed us to sleep in late after being in the poker room until the wee hours of the morning.
In-Room Window View (4/5)
Overall, I wasn’t expecting much from the view, but when I drew back the curtains of my room on the 14th floor I was pleasantly surprised. I first noticed the top of the parking garage which met expectations, but what surprised me was the stunning view of the Mississippi River in the background. The negative from before, of not having a lot of things around Gold Strike, now provided a beautiful landscape to wake up to each morning. Unfortunately, the window was high enough that I couldn’t see while sitting in a chair and there were no balconies to on either.
Bed Comfort (4/5)
Similar to my review of the Beau Rivage, beds at the Gold Strike bed were overall fairly comfortable. I also liked that at this property I had no trouble getting two queen beds as I am a bit taller and being stuck in a double is not something I enjoy. Being able to get two beds allowed me to have one of my friends share the room and save him the $129 rate that was being offered for six hours of poker play at the Horseshoe.
Knowing that they were trying to limit their expenses, and had already cashed in some Southwest Rapid Rewards points for the flight, I was glad to be able to save one of them additional expenses. My friend commented that he found the bed comfortable, but not quite as comfy as the ones we had during our stay at the Borgata.
The bathroom in the room at the Gold Strike was nice and had good finishes throughout. However, the bathroom didn’t have have a separate shower and tub, which was different than the Beau Rivage and Bellagio properties. I liked that the walls gave it a modern feel throughout even if the fixtures didn’t quite match. The extra counter space next to the sink is always appreciated and the bathroom amenities provided were the same MGM brand found at other properties. When I got home, my wife commented that they smelled “like boy” and wouldn’t touch them, which is probably why I enjoyed them more than other hotel brand shampoos and conditioners.
In-Room Decor & Furnishings (3/5)
This was an area that I felt was lacking, especially after all of the space I had in the last three MGM properties which included Borgata, Beau Rivage, and Bellagio. In all of those rooms, I had some extra space to set my things. They all had an extra table and chairs. Sadly, this was not the case at the Gold Strike as there was just one desk chair and desk. The desk had some space lost to the items that were on it.
The desk chair provided was of good quality and was comfortable to sit in for a while. Another thing that I liked was the modern artwork that was in the room and in the bathroom that matched the rest of the decor in the room. The included safe was large enough to hold multiple racks of poker chips that we brought back to the room to avoid the long cashier lines.
In-Room Electronics And Entertainment (4/5)
Between my friend and I, we brought more devices with us than I can count. Thankfully, there was more than enough plugs and outlets for everything due to the fact that each of the lamps had contained an outlet (some even contained two!). The TV in the room was decent and worked fine. The alarm clock that came with the room provided additional outlets. Apparently this alarm clock has the ability to be set for a specific day of the week. My friend and I didn’t touch it at all, yet on the second morning it went off around 6am. This was brutal after being up almost all night!
Snack & Minibar (2/5)
Snacks? What snacks? Anything here would have been a blessing, and after having some amazing welcome gifts provided at hotels around the world, arriving to basically nothing is never great. Thankfully, when I’m on a poker weekend, I bring a bunch of my own stuff to eat during the day. As far as beverages go, we were provided only two bottles of water at check in and they were not replenished after we drank them. The coffee in the room was an off-brand and wasn’t as good as the mediocre coffee we could get for free in the poker room. Like almost every other casino, there was no mini fridge to store anything cold.
Overall, the MGM Gold Strike room was mediocre, and it wasn’t the most glamorous casino resort that I’ve stayed at. I do realize I stay at a lot of nice casino properties though. My reality check came after talking to my friend who stayed at the Horseshoe Roadhouse. Let’s just say that that his free stay was the right price as lots of things were not up to snuff and made my other friend and I feel like we were staying at the Ritz. Therefore, if I’m looking for a respectable room in the Tunica area, I would still look no further than the Gold Strike Casino Resort.
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