Q&A - Valley View Casino & Hotel
When was the Valley View casino resort built?
Our original property opened on April 18, 2001. Since that time we have continually
made improvements with our first major remodel completed in December 2007, resulting
in the expansion of our property from approximately 43,000 sq. ft. to over 115,000
sq. ft. In December 2008, we completed a 7000 sq. ft. expansion of our non-smoking
casino resulting in a full service non-smoking gaming option for our guests. In
November 2010 we completed our 160,000 sq. ft., 108 rooms/suites luxury boutique
hotel. Today Valley View Casino & Hotel is 300,000 sq. ft. of fun and excitement!
When did you start and what brought you into this dynamic industry?
I began my journey in this fantastic industry in 2003. As a tribal member and former
Law Enforcement professional for over 25 years I had the opportunity to bring some
unique and varied skill sets to the industry and specifically to a gaming operation
that was near and dear to my heart. In 2004, our tribal community established the
San PasquaI Casino Development Group, Inc., a completely unique tribal corporation,
completely setting apart the tribe's gaming operation to be managed in all aspects
by the eight member Board of Directors which is a combination of tribal members
and gaming and financing industry professionals.
What aspects do you enjoy most about your role at the casino?
Watching our team members develop, mature and grow into expanded roles with additional
responsibilities that afford them the opportunity of taking on new challenges, step
for step with our building and our business growing and expanding concurrently.
From my perspective it is rewarding and comforting to know and see that decisions
made and actions taken have really been the right ones that have paid off for our
guests, our team members and their families, and our Tribal members and their families.
The Valley View website ValleyViewCasino.com,
is well laid out and provides easy access to information on player promotions, food
and beverages along with all the hotels facilities. Has the development of this
website been an important contributing reason for the casino's success?
We have substantial visits to the website seeking property information including
directions, hours of operation and other pertinent information they utilize to make
their entertainment decision. The competitive nature of the business dictates that
your website is attractive, easy to navigate, and loaded with great information
that educates and informs your guest. It is a key element to the success of the
overall marketing of the property with so many entertainment choices out there.
Our website provides just the right amount of content to build excitement about
our property and really makes the viewer want to come see all the fun in person.
With the relaxation in online gaming restrictions do you plan to operate an
online gaming site so that, for example, patrons can build loyalty points to be
used at the casino?
We are certainly staying abreast of the developments taking place in the area of
on-line gaming. We believe this issue has significant hurdles to overcome. Should
it become a reality we would certainly plan to benefit our community in the best
What percentage of the patrons to the casino are local versus tourist and business
The majority of visits come from the local areas - 150 miles to the north into Los
Angeles and 60 miles to the west and south. The loyalty that we have built has created
a frequency of these guests that is unheard of in the casino industry. This is a
result of very specific rewards, promotions, world class dining, a state-of-the-art
value driven casino floor and the finest guest service offered in North America
with 1,000 team members welcoming every guest into our home. We do however capture
many visiting tourists and vacationers and continue to look for ways to plug into
that part of the market through relationships with the convention center, hospitality
businesses, and publications that touch that segment.
Does the casino cater for conferences and exhibitions?
Currently our property has a beautiful, fully equipped Event Center that is dedicated
to solely taking care of our guests by offering one-of-a-kind events, concerts,
promotions and parties for groups up to 500. We continually look for ways to capitalize
on the well-appointed Event Center and the beautiful views and amenities.
What are the unique aspects of Valley View Casino & Hotel that distinguish it
from others in San Diego that have contributed to its award winning success?
Valley View Casino & Hotel has developed an incredible brand and reputation for
world-class service, a renowned lobster buffet, and the most current, state-of-the-art
gaming devices. We have set the standards for giving the most back to guests in
comps, promotions, and high end rewards like Charger and Padres luxury suite tickets.
We promise the world, and deliver the universe. Additionally, the level of individual
team member commitment and dedication to ensuring each and every guest has a positive
and memorable gaming, lodging and dining experience time after time I believe is
the key that sets us apart from all competitors.
How do you maintain your portfolio of machines and what is your policy on buying
We use a performance report that shows us what games our guests prefer based on
their popularity. The report will show what percentage of the floor all manufacturers
have and how much business each one of those games does over a 1- 30 day period.
We use that report and comments from our guests to decide what games are best suited
for our casino. We also use this report when purchasing new machines each year.
We replace approximately 10% of our floor each year which means we purchase approximately
200 of the most popular, innovative slot machines each year. These are the same
type of games that are used on the Las Vegas Strip and around the country.
What is your approximate breakdown of slot machines by manufacturer?
We have 5 main manufacturers that we use primarily starting with IGT with approximate
42% our slot machines followed by Aristocrat with 25%, Konami with 12%, Williams
with 9%, Bally with 7%. The remaining 5% is made up from a number of small manufacturers.
Valley View provides 26 Vegas style table games, which is impressive. Is that
to cater a more table gaming orientated market or simply to broaden the scope of
The table games selection is a reflection of Vegas-style gaming as a whole. The
promise is to deliver a product to our guests that makes them feel like they are
experiencing Vegas right in their backyard.
The games cover nearly all of the major games and have large dollar progressives
for added excitement and entertainment.
Poker is still increasing in popularity. Does the Casino host special events
to cater for this sector?
We currently have the table game Ultimate Texas Hold'Em which is an exciting poker
game designed to bring poker into the main table games pit. We currently do not
operate a live poker room, but look for future expansion products that would include
the games in the table games mix.
Does the Casino have auto roulette machines or is there a significant preference
The automated roulette machines are convenient and have come a long way in the business,
but live roulette with the guest service and interpersonal exchanges with a dealer
still continue to dominate the guest preference. Live roulette brings a sense of
excitement and thrills which are very hard or near impossible to duplicate on the
automated version. The live roulette game is the dominate choice of our loyal guests.
What of your latest slot machines are proving most popular?
The manufacturers have really come up with some great themes this year and our guests
are really enjoying them. "Paradise Fishing" from Aruze gaming, "Tarzan" from Aristocrat,
"Yahtzee" from Williams gaming, "Ghost Busters" from IGT, "Beat the Field" from
Konami and many other games are all very popular. They offer our players a fun experience
and a great chance to win money. We are the only casino recognized with "Certified
Loose Slots" in all of Southern California as judged by an independent publication.
We offer the best value to our guests and that is why we are the busiest casino
in Southern California with the highest loyalty rate in all of California.
Are all your slot machines linked and what systems software do you use?
The games all communicate through our IGT Advantage system.
Do you have TITO I Smart cards?
We have the most advanced Ticket In Ticket Out system in California on all 2,000
of our slot machines. At this time we are not looking into the smart card but we
are always open to taking another look when that technology becomes more advanced.
What is amongst your favorite piece of business advice?
Hire right! It all starts with hiring the right person and doing so in the spirit
of the "80/20 Hire the smile - train the skill" principle. Understanding that the
technical side of an individual's responsibilities, the 20% is more easily trained
and retained. The more difficult aspect to achieve is the personal side, the interaction
between our team member and our guest, what we like to call the 80%. Hiring the
personalities that display the qualities necessary to embrace and carry out the
guest service philosophy is key.
Have you any major ambitions left to achieve?
Native American Gaming, relatively speaking is still in its infancy and as a result
particularly in Southern California there remains a significant market that has
yet to experience what we have to offer. That vast market represents major ambitions
yet to achieve.