Cook Group takes control of casino

Full story: The Indianapolis Star

The Indiana Gaming Commission on Thursday approved changes in the ownership structure of the French Lick Resorts & Casino, giving the Bloomington-based Cook Group 99 percent of the development and a ...
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Concerned

Indianapolis, IN

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#1
Dec 7, 2007
 
I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news but, I think the French Lick Casino was a big mistake, everyone I've talked to here in Indpls says they just don't like it down there and I clearly didn't care for the place. They spent a lot of money to put it together and that money could have been donated from jump.

Besides, they weren't paying off any good hits. I think it may give the locals there something to do, but as far as traveling to and from for gaming, Not happening.
Old Guy

Noblesville, IN

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#2
Dec 7, 2007
 
Concerned wrote:
I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news but, I think the French Lick Casino was a big mistake, everyone I've talked to here in Indpls says they just don't like it down there and I clearly didn't care for the place. They spent a lot of money to put it together and that money could have been donated from jump.
Besides, they weren't paying off any good hits. I think it may give the locals there something to do, but as far as traveling to and from for gaming, Not happening.
Hmmm...
Not what I've seen. A group of well-to-do retireees took a bus trip down this Fall and had a good time. They were touring the area and made a long stop at the casino. I'm not a gambler, but I look forward to going just to visit the area and see some shows.
Jay

San Francisco, CA

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#3
Dec 7, 2007
 
Couple friends went there and said they'd never go back. Too small, too long a trip.

Good to see the Cook Gruop, the casino, and the state all working out the most convoluted possible ownership scheme again. I'm sure it's all on the up and up.

Why they would give one cent to IU is beyond me - there's people without medical care in Indiana, without decent housing, but it goes to IU ?
Orange County Cheerleader

Indianapolis, IN

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#4
Dec 7, 2007
 
We own property in French Lick, and see the hotels and casino on a regular basis. Drive through the parking garage and look at how many out of state and county tags there are.
Orange County is striving to become a vacation destination, not just a casino. The hotel renovations are beautiful, and there is much to do besides gaming at the resorts. Next year a hotel water park will open for even more family type entertainment.
I have personally watched the life long residents of Orange County struggle for almost 16 years. I hope everyone will give Mr. Cook and Orange County a chance to let this work.
Brad

United States

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#5
Dec 7, 2007
 
Concerned wrote:
I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news but, I think the French Lick Casino was a big mistake, everyone I've talked to here in Indpls says they just don't like it down there and I clearly didn't care for the place. They spent a lot of money to put it together and that money could have been donated from jump.
Besides, they weren't paying off any good hits. I think it may give the locals there something to do, but as far as traveling to and from for gaming, Not happening.
Not certain what Concerned is talking about, my wife and I love the resort and if I golfed, I would probably be in heaven. Unlike the other casinos down on the river this is the one that does not make you feel slimy or trashy while visiting. The friends of ours who have visited have also loved it.

I held a business function there a couple months ago flying in co-workers and employees from the east coast who marveled at the place.

French lick clearly is appealing to a different demographic group and a different set of tastes than the other casinos in this state. The goal of the riverboat casinos is to get low and fixed income people to drop their checks at their place as opposed to the lottery line at the convenience store.

French lick is a destination and getaway with a casino and three golf courses, two spas and great restaraunts on premises, not a floating ash tray with a bunch of slot machines in board.
Oldtimer

Bloomfield, IN

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#6
Dec 7, 2007
 
My family went there shortly after it opened last year. We stayed in the hotel one night. Understandably, it's no Vegas, but the visit was a pleasant experience. The situation will probably get better under total control by the Cook people. At least, I hope it does. The people down there need all the help they can get.
cup half full

Martinsville, IN

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#7
Dec 7, 2007
 
The casino at French Lick was never destined to be like the others in the state - yes, it takes an effort to get there but the point is that the casino is just one element of the French Lick and Orange County experience. It is part of a resort, and while it may not be popular with the weekend boat gamblers it is a nice addition to all the things you can do at the resort and in beautiful Orange County. This is such a beautiful and historic part of southern Indiana - don't sell it short. Thank God for Bill Cook!

JBM

“Look past the end of your nose”

Since: Nov 07

Indianapolis

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#8
Dec 7, 2007
 
Brad wrote:
<quoted text>
Not certain what Concerned is talking about, my wife and I love the resort and if I golfed, I would probably be in heaven. Unlike the other casinos down on the river this is the one that does not make you feel slimy or trashy while visiting. The friends of ours who have visited have also loved it.
I held a business function there a couple months ago flying in co-workers and employees from the east coast who marveled at the place.
French lick clearly is appealing to a different demographic group and a different set of tastes than the other casinos in this state. The goal of the riverboat casinos is to get low and fixed income people to drop their checks at their place as opposed to the lottery line at the convenience store.
French lick is a destination and getaway with a casino and three golf courses, two spas and great restaraunts on premises, not a floating ash tray with a bunch of slot machines in board.
Man, this is a clever post, and all true! I'm still laughing and nodding my head even as I type.
Legend

Carmel, IN

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#9
Dec 7, 2007
 
We visited French Lick last December and they were still experiencing difficulities related to their recent opening. We couldn't get drink or food service and the on site restarurant was always booked and very over priced. I compared it to going to a Walmart with slot machines and a Golden Corral buffit in the corner.
IPS graduates 52 percent

United States

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#10
Dec 7, 2007
 
Orange County Cheerleader wrote:
We own property in French Lick, and see the hotels and casino on a regular basis. Drive through the parking garage and look at how many out of state and county tags there are.
Orange County is striving to become a vacation destination, not just a casino. The hotel renovations are beautiful, and there is much to do besides gaming at the resorts. Next year a hotel water park will open for even more family type entertainment.
I have personally watched the life long residents of Orange County struggle for almost 16 years. I hope everyone will give Mr. Cook and Orange County a chance to let this work.
Most times of the year itís cheaper for me to FLY to Vegas and get a hotel than it is to stay in French Lick. That canít be good for business.
Kevin

Carmel, IN

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#11
Dec 7, 2007
 
The hotel is very nice but the casino is small and unimpressive. The casino revenue is last in the state and will continue to be because there is no interstate access to French Lick and it's too much of a roadtrip for most Hoosiers. Less than 25 rooms were booked during a recent weekend at the West Baden hotel. Not many people want to spend $300-400/night (weekend rates) for a hotel in French Lick, IN. Those are NYC/Chicago rates. Very nice facility, but I think it will continue to struggle due to its location.
Cheeta

United States

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#12
Dec 7, 2007
 
Rumor is another casino is being planned to be built in Freedom, IN. to help that economically depressed area,it too has a lot of historic background being the birthplace of the original Tarzan.
They plan on donating 50% of their profits to Purdue University, Butler, Indiana State, Vincennes University and all the zoo's in Indiana.
harsh reality

Colorado Springs, CO

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#13
Dec 7, 2007
 
Jay wrote:
Couple friends went there and said they'd never go back. Too small, too long a trip.
Good to see the Cook Gruop, the casino, and the state all working out the most convoluted possible ownership scheme again. I'm sure it's all on the up and up.
Why they would give one cent to IU is beyond me - there's people without medical care in Indiana, without decent housing, but it goes to IU ?
A person may give their money where they wish. Reality is that education is the key to lower poverty. Most people in these situations you describe made a choice at some point, and are now paying the price. Too bad. For those few who are unfortunate victims of cirmcumstance, the welfare system provides housing and food. If they don't like how they are living, they need to make a change.
Seriously

United States

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#14
Dec 7, 2007
 
I had a great time at french lick...

Spent the afternoon golfing, had a good dinner and lost money at the casino. Yet the facility was nice and the hospitality was outstanding.

The only other place like it in Indiana is Belterra...both are far enough out of the way that Joe Blow isn't walking in and cashing his weekly paycheck.

It would be nice if the Casino was bigger. If you're only going for the gambling, then you're going to be disappointed. It's not a Casino, it's a Resort and Casino...a destination not a stop over. Take in all it has to offer and you'll enjoy your time there.
Hopeful

Indianapolis, IN

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#15
Dec 7, 2007
 
We're going to there this winter -but not for the slots. Don't gamble -not for any reason than I can't figure out how the machines work. But.........I have heard from many people that the machines are too "tight." While the hotels are beautiful, and the golfing and spas are an attraction, if they want gaming revenue, Cook will have to lossen the payouts and do a lot of marketing to convince folks to come back. And.........now this will get a lot of laughs, it would be nice if the casino were smokefree -seriously. Now please don't start with the civil rights issue -I just wonder if more people would come in if they could breathe.
Cheeta

United States

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#16
Dec 7, 2007
 
Rumor has it that a new casino is being planned in Freedom, IN to help that economically depressed area. They too have a rich historic backgroun being the birthplace of the original Tarzan.
They plan on donating 50% of their profits to Purdue Universiy, Butler, Indiana State, Vincennes University and all the zoo's in Indiana.
BJB

Fairport, NY

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#17
Dec 7, 2007
 
Concerned wrote:
I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news but, I think the French Lick Casino was a big mistake, everyone I've talked to here in Indpls says they just don't like it down there and I clearly didn't care for the place. They spent a lot of money to put it together and that money could have been donated from jump.Besides, they weren't paying off any good hits. I think it may give the locals there something to do, but as far as traveling to and from for gaming, Not happening.
We went to the casino last October and loved the experience. In fact, we have already made a reservation for January. Yes, it is a pain to drive there, but they just approved the construction of two major highways to french lick. The construction is suppose to commence summer 2008 and will help with the commute. Benchmark management was really the only problem we encountered and now that they are out of the picture I can't wait to visit again. The casino is clean, the hotel is nice and west baden is beautiful. Oh, and the golf was amazing and they are working on two more first class courses.
Randy

Washington, DC

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#18
Dec 7, 2007
 
Once the Casino is up and running at Hoosier Park in Anderson why would anyone want to drive to French Lick from Indianapolis and Fort Wayne areas? This casino will be right off of I-69 at exit 26. Good Luck Cook Group.
Jerri

Lebanon, IN

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#19
Dec 7, 2007
 
Yeah!
I liked it

Indianapolis, IN

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#20
Dec 7, 2007
 
The hotel is great looking, needs some tweeking like any new place. And West Baden is excellent.
I don't gamble either, but it's a great place to visit and getaway. The casino seems goofy, but I guess jobs were needed.
Good job Cook's, I appreciate all the money youhave thrown at it.

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