Manitobans hit the jackpot with South Beach Casino & Resort: By Brandi Parnell
Despite the drop in temperatures across the prairies, there is a warm atmosphere resonating 30 minutes north of Winnipeg on Highway 59.
South Beach Casino & Resort is where Manitobans are going for quick getaways, “Simply Irresistible” food and an atmosphere that rivals Florida. This tropical paradise even has an address to match, 1 Ocean Drive.
In fact, they have thought of everything – loads of parking, a friendly face to greet you upon arrival and clear signage to guide you wherever you may wish to go. The attention to detail is evident in their art deco décor. Their amenities are luxurious, yet comfortable. And, what is even better, is that now you can stay the night.
What was once a stand-alone casino has recently become a casino and a resort. To entice guests to stay the night, South Beach is offering room rates for $47.00 per night Sunday through Thursday. It’s pretty hard to beat that, just ask their management.
“I just returned from a forced vacation,” laughs Tick Rowson, director of marketing. “I love it here. South Beach is where service sets us apart. We pride ourselves on service. We have a warm feeling climate and our staff is fantastic.” And that, Rowson feels, is what really makes their casino and resort a destination.
It is evident their goal is to make guests as comfortable as possible. The gaming floor offers complimentary coffee, Pepsi products, South Beach branded water and even café mochas. There is free live entertainment that features country and classic rock music along with a weekly poker tournament.
Truly, South Beach has it all. Their amenities include a meeting and conference centre, a 5,000 square foot grand ballroom, junior and deluxe suites, a Tropical Pool, The Coral Reef Gift Shop and a full gaming floor. In fact, if you can try your luck at any one of 600 slot machines, or a multitude of game tables. What’s more is they offer Best Hand of the Month cash prizes, and better still, progressive jackpots.
After you’ve played yourself out, Rowson encourages guests to stop and enjoy some of the delicious dishes being prepared on site by Chef Dave MacPherson. MacPherson has returned home to Manitoba after being out West where he apprenticed at Chateau Lake Louise, worked in Vancouver, and was working in a fine dining restaurant in Winnipeg when an executive from South Beach scooped him up.
“Over a conversation or two, we got to know one another. We got along well and the rest is history. I just love being back in Manitoba. I love cottage country, fishing and boating,” he states.
Happily, he brings his Manitoba pride into his kitchen where he slices, dices, sautés and simmers as much local product as is available. “I believe in using food that is as fresh as possible. Everything here is prepared in-house from scratch,” he says.
That includes his signature dishes, which are indicative of their First Nations’ guests. “We incorporate bison meat and bannock into the menu.” “Our biggest focus here though is giving people outstanding value for their money,” says MacPherson.
Monday night is all you can eat ribs for $9.95, Tuesday is a 16-ounce certified Angus beef T-bone steak plus the trimmings for $9.95, Wednesday is Surf & Turf for $14.95 and their best deal yet ... Thursday is Manitoba’s Finest Seafood Feast Buffet for $19.95.
However, do not let the prices fool you. The food is mouth-watering, fresh and served hot all throughout the day. “We want to bring people out to the casino and make them happy,” he says. Judging by their loyal following, South Beach Casino & Resort has done just that. Their Seafood Feast offers 13 to 15 different seafood dishes, including lobster and crab.
“We often have more people than staff and yet each week we not only pull it off, but we have people eagerly coming back for more,” laughs MacPherson.
Perhaps it is the warm atmosphere or maybe it is the fact that walking in the door makes you feel as if you are leaving your worries behind, either way South Beach Casino and Resort is a place where you can play, stay and eat your days away. With a chilly Manitoba winter still in place, this is a destination that should be top of mind for those eager to rest and relax. You can bet on it.