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Guests make the most of their visits with resort packages

Casino resorts say that getaway packages are the best way for guests to get the most out of their visits. These packages are growing in popularity at some of the state’s resorts because they offer convenience by rolling room reservations and activities into one price tag and booking. Golf packages seem to be the ones most often requested.

“At Pearl River Resort, guests enjoy booking packages so they may take part in more amenities during their visits,” says Ryan Griffin, the resort’s public relations manager. “Two of our more popular packages are the golf package and the spa package.”

The resort’s golf packages now offer more choices. Guests may choose between accommodations at two resort hotels and the recently completed Hilton Garden Inn Choctaw located at the Dancing Rabbit Golf Course.

“Each package includes a night’s stay, breakfast and round of golf on one of the two championship golf courses,” he said.

Perfect trip a click away

At the Harrah’s Entertainment properties in Tunica, general manager Bill Wright said getaway packages continue to be popular with guests. One reason may be because the package options are easy to check out and order online. By clicking on the Grand, Horseshoe or Sheraton casinos, potential visitors can see what’s available with stay and play packages.

“We always do dinner and hotel rooms and sometimes have dinner, a room and a show,” he said. “Golf packages are the most popular, especially in the summer.”

Hollywood Casino in Bay St. Louis makes the most of its Bridges Golf Course by offering overnight golf packages, according to Bob Davidge, advertising and public relations manager.

“The cost depends on the number of people, days of the week and times of the year,” he said. “The costs and selection of tee times are available on our website as a convenience to guests.”

Taking center stage

Entertainment is the main attraction for getaway packages at the Beau Rivage Casino Resort in Biloxi. “We offer getaway room packages — most often in conjunction with entertainment as that seems to be a big draw for people to come back time and time again,” said public relations director Mary Cracchiolo-Spain.

She said the current show package includes deluxe accommodations, two tickets and two theater snack packs, which includes a small non-alcoholic drink, small popcorn and candy. There will also be a room and show package for the “Lord of the Dance” program, which comes to the Beau Rivage in April.

“In March, we will be offering a spa package that includes an ocean view room, spa credit and coupon toward additional services, Actique discount and turn down service.”

Consumer driven?

Lance Hopkins, former casino marketing director who now teaches casino marketing at Tulane University in Biloxi, says it is to consumers’ advantage to seek out and ask for packages. “Packages give consumers a better value and more incentive to come to a resort,” he said. “Packages are generally cheaper than buying everything a la carte.”

He says getaway packages are more in demand as casino resorts become more competitive and consumers become savvier. Players who frequent certain resorts also earn different packages according to their level of play.

“Consumers and players are looking for bargains and know how to find them these days. People will ask for packages,” he added. “Golf is the primary package as more resorts build golf courses or strike deals with existing courses. But whatever the casino has to offer — it may be fishing, entertainment or spa services — they will market as getaway packages and consumers should make themselves aware of these offers.”

Contact MBJ contributing writer Lynn Lofton at llofton656@aol.com.

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