We recently visited Pechanga Resort Casino, located just a 35 minute drive north of San Marcos, in Temecula, California. This is a ginormous casino, with a stunning lobby, a fun and exciting vibe and impeccable customer service. The casino boasts 5,400 slot machines, 152 table games, a poker room with 38 tables, including a high roller area, and a 700-seat bingo facility. It’s also one of the only smoke-free casinos in California, which is pretty amazing.
Our mini-suite, in the resort tower, was very comfortable and we were excited to have a beautiful view of the garden. The room had a ample sized bathroom and shower with a separate water closet and double sinks.
There was a TV in the main room with a pullout couch, a desk in case you need to work and a mini bar. My only complaint is that there is no separate fridge, so you really can’t save leftovers. And the fridge is fully stocked with a wet bar which charges you if you move anything. What made up for that however, was the fact that each room includes L’Occitane products to use during your stay! They smell absolutely amazing! Ooh La La!
My husband and I were celebrating an anniversary, so we had a wonderful Italian dinner at Paisano’s. My pasta was amazing, and they serve large portions. (Thus the leftovers) My husband had the chicken parmesan and it was equally as good. I found their wine list to be impeccable, which was perfect for our celebration. As usual, I forgot to take pictures of our food, but trust me, it was excellent and very well priced.
We also had appetizers and drinks at both Kelsey’s and at Umi Sushi & Oyster Bar during our stay. Both had exceptionally friendly service and we got to know the bartenders during our stay there. To the right of Umi restaurant had a bar and machines to play, eat and drink while hanging out. Kelsey’s on the other hand, is machine-free, so you can enjoy a conversation with your companion(s). We enjoyed the food, drinks and company at both. Everyone is genuinely warm and makes you feel like you want to stay and visit for a while.
Most convenient during our stay was the food court, which they call The Food Walk. We actually ate there a couple of times during our stay because the food was good and it was quick. We had a late night “snack” there our first night and the noodles at the noodle house were so good, I went back the next day for lunch!
There are a total of 9 restaurants in the casino, so there is definitely something for everyone and in every price range. You can’t go wrong. I also want to mention that room service is officially back and we took advantage of that one evening as well. There’s nothing better than enjoying a meal in bed while watching a little bit of TV.
We decided to treat ourselves to a cabana day out at the pool, called The Cove, and I’m so glad we did. The average temperature in the fall in Temecula is 89 degrees, which is when we went, so you can imagine how hot it is in the earlier months of the year.
Our cabana was a nice escape from the heat, as it had a fan going at all times and a fully stocked refrigerator with plenty of water. Of course, it was fully covered and there was plenty of inside seating, a TV and two comfy lounge chairs. The cabana fits up to 6 people if you’d like to invite some friends and there is a $100 minimum food and drink requirement, which was very easy to achieve, even for just the two of us.
We enjoyed our day cooling off in the adult pool and met a bunch of really nice people while enjoying our adult beverages. You can also rent a daybed for the day, if you’d like and those were shaded by umbrellas.
If you opt not to rent a daybed or cabana, no problem. There’s a full bar where you can sit and enjoy your drink in the shade or order and take them back to your lounge chair. They also have a good old fashioned swim up bar which always fun!
Going with the kiddos? Also not a problem. There’s also a designated family pool and a family jacuzzi to enjoy. There’s also a really cool slide for the kids and adults alike to enjoy. We saw it from afar, but didn’t check it out, as we were kid-free. But our friends with kids said it’s a great day out for the whole family.
Another thing to note is that you do have to be a Club Member to rent the cabana, which is just a card you gamble with so they can keep track of your winnings. When you check into the pool, there’s a full shop that sells sunscreen in case you forget yours, which we did, hats, sunglasses and anything else you may need during your time at the pool.
We really enjoyed the day of relaxation and being waited on. I highly suggest it.
The casino at Pechanga spans a whopping 200,000 square feet, the biggest of any resort and casino in the United States. It has a nice, comfortable flow, it’s very clean and after walking through a couple of times, it’s easy to find your way around. They just recently revamped a large part of the casino so everything feels fresh and new. As I mentioned before, it’s a non-smoking casino, so you don’t have to search for a place to sit and not inhale all of that yuckiness.
I would say our favorite part of the casino to play slots/video poker is The Circle Bar. It’s located close to the food hall and there is plenty of seating and TV’s. You can sit at the bar, or grab a seat on the comfy couches behind the bar and watch sports, chat with friends or just take a load off. We probably liked it the most because we actually took our first shot at Keno on a machine and won! We sat next to a gal who gave us the 411 on how she plays and lo-and-behold, we won! Pretty exciting…
I’ll be honest, I’m not a huge gambler, so we really just played the video poker and blackjack games. My hubby probably would have played some craps or roulette, but we just didn’t get around to it this trip. But I did make a list of things we need to check out on our next trip.
- The Spa– Because who doesn’t want/need a good hot stone massage?
- The Comedy Club– Because who doesn’t need a good laugh?
- Journey at Pechanga– Because who doesn’t love a nice day of golf?
- Journey’s End– Because after a round of golf, you need a nice cold drink!
We had an amazing stay at Pechanga and we can’t wait to go back and stay again. Lucky for us, we have a $45 chit that’s going to need to be cashed out some day soon, so we’ll definitely be back.
Don’t feel like taking the drive up to Temecula from San Diego? Then check out Harrah’s Casino in Valley Center in North County San Diego! It’s also a great place to staycation!