Got some Vegas fever, but don’t want to pay the airfare? Casinos dot all of Western Washington and range from tiny to quite large. Within the city limits of Seattle and Tacoma, casinos are usually small with a limited numbers of games. It doesn’t take more than a half-hour drive from any Seattle-area city to get to a large Indian casino, and the drive is usually worth it. Local casinos are more than places to play the slots, blackjack, poker and other games—they are also known for nightlife, shows and dining, including the always popular casino buffet experience.
Do be aware that Indian casinos allow smoking and are generally quite smoky inside. Most do have nonsmoking areas, but this doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t smell any smoke there if you’re very sensitive.
Snoqualmie Casino is just about a half hour from Seattle (an hour from Tacoma), set in the beautiful and quaint small town of Snoqualmie. Nearby are Snoqualmie Falls and the Snoqualmie Brewery and Taproom. The casino is large and attractive, decorated in the spirit of the Northwest. Snoqualmie is probably best-known for the shows it gets. The casino has two entertainment venues: the indoor Snoqualmie Ballroom and the seasonal outdoor amphitheater Mountain View Plaza.
Location: 37500 SE North Bend Way, Snoqualmie, WA 98065
Size: 170,000 square feet; 51,000 square feet of gaming space
Nonsmoking Section: Yes. The restaurants and Poker Room are also nonsmoking.
Games: Fifty table games, including blackjack, roulette, baccarat, craps and pai gow; 1,700 slot machines, and a 10-table poker room.
Nightlife: Two bars and two lounges, including a cigar lounge and a piano lounge.
Dining: Terra Vista (fine dining with a view), 12 Moons Asian Bistro (Asian-American fusion), Falls Buffet (buffet complete with a Brazilian grill, Chinese wok bar, Mongolian grill, and a pasta station), Sno Café (New York-style deli), Café Drip (coffee shop), and Sno Deli (casual pizza, sandwiches and quick bites).
Players Club: Yes. Free to sign up. The Snoqualmie Casino Crescent Club gets you points to use on food, gift shop items or cash.
Muckleshoot Casino is about equidistant from Seattle and Tacoma and provides some of the best gaming spaces in the state. At more than 300,000 square feet, it’s also one of the largest overall. Muckleshoot also has the largest nonsmoking casino area in Washington.
Location: 2402 Auburn Way South, Auburn, WA 98002
Size: 328,000 square feet
Nonsmoking Section: Yes. Muckleshoot’s nonsmoking section is the largest in the state with 1,000 slots and 35 table game. It’s also completely separate from the smoking section.
Games: The casino has 3,150 slot machines, 75 table games and 35 poker tables.
Nightlife: Club Galaxy if you’re looking for live music, DJs and dancing. There’s also a cigar lounge, Media Bar sports lounge, and other smaller bars.
Dining: Eight restaurants and cafes, including the Spice Bay Buffet, BSB (burgers and sandwiches), Island Deli (deli plus eclectic variety of casual foods), 8 Asian Cuisine (casual, but nicer sit-down spot), Coyaba Grill, a coffee shop, and the Sweet Shoppe.
Players Club: Yes. The Preferred Players Club is free to join. You get discounts on the buffet, lodging, cash back, or you can use your points to dine at the casino or shop.
Emerald Queen Casino is one of the larger South Sound casinos, but doesn’t have the pizazz of Snoqualmie or the size of Muckleshoot. Still, this is a fine place to go if your aim is to enjoy some time on the slots or tables as there’s a large variety of each. The casino also gets shows large and small, including headliners, MMA and UFC matches.
Location: 5700 Pacific Highway East, Fife, WA 98424
Nonsmoking Section: Yes, but it is not large and game choice is limited.
Games: There are 56 table games and more than 2,000 slots.
Nightlife: The Bridge Nightclub has live music on Fridays and Saturdays and there’s no cover to get in.
Dining: Seven restaurants and shops provide a nice variety of places to grab a bite. Tatoosh Grill is the most upscale of the dining spots here, International Restaurant is located upstairs and has a varied menu of Asian and American favorites, and there are two buffets (Pacific Rim Buffet and International Buffet).
Players Club: Yes. If you sign up for the Slot Club, then play for two hours, you can get a $25 food voucher, too! Ask at the information desk at the casino for more details.
Tulalip Resort Casino is very possibly your best bet if you’re looking for a great local getaway destination. The casino itself is large, the resort offers a spa and beautiful hotel rooms, and right next door are the Seattle Premium Outlets. The Tulalip Amphitheatre is also here with seating for 2,600. Past performers have included Jamie Foxx, Darius Rucker and Foreigner. Tulalip Resort Casino is a half hour north of Seattle.
Location: 10200 Quil Ceda Boulevard, Tulalip, WA, 98271
Size: 200,000 square feet of gaming space!
Nonsmoking Section: No.
Games: Slots, poker, bingo, keno, blackjack, roulette, and more.
Nightlife: mpulse Lounge is a swanky club with live music and DJs, dancing, and cool decorative details (light-up floors, mirrored ceiling).
Dining: Seven restaurants offer seven distinct dining options. Tulalip Bay Fine Dining (island-inspired and Northwest fusion) , Blackfish (Northwest cuisine), Cedars Café (casual, sit-down), Eagles Buffet, Canoes Carvery (sandwiches, pizzas, and quick bites), and Killer Coffee.
Players Club: Yes. The Rewards Club gives you a point for every dollar of slot play. Points get you cash back, discounts at the casino and at the Seattle Premium Outlets next door.
What Quinault lacks in size, it makes up for with the fact that it’s right on the beach. At a little over two hours from Seattle in Ocean Shores, Quinault Beach Resort and Casino offers a quiet local vacation with a little extra excitement. Rooms at the resort range from standard up to lovely suites with ocean views.
Location: 78 State Route 115, Ocean Shores, WA 98569
Size: 16,000 square feet of gaming space.
Nonsmoking Section: No, but in the summer, doors are sometimes left open to provide some natural ventilation to the casino floor.
Games: Fifteen table games and over 350 slots.
Nightlife: Ocean Lounge has live music usually on weekends.
Dining: Emily’s (fine dining Northwest cuisine), Sidewalk Deli (quick bites), and a coffee shop.
Players Club: Yes. The Q-Club earns you coupons that you can use on hotel or gift deals, or get cash back.