Terrible Herbst Hotel & Casino, on Paradise & Flamingo in Las Vegas, NV.
Herbst Brothers listed as non-caring.
While the Herbst brothers seem to be buying up a lot of properties and expanding their "family" owned operations; gas stations, hotels, and casinos, they seem to have lost sight of what is most important, and that is customer service. When small companies go "corporate", it is unfortunate that the "corporate" officers lose touch with their day-to-day operations. The Herbst brothers have fallen into the category of CEO's, Presidents, and Vice-Presidents that are now so far removed from the reality of their own business, they have forgotten who keeps them in business to begin with: Their customers.
In most cases, when a customer goes un-heard and they file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau, someone from the corporate office responds immediately to the customer directly, first, before they answer a BBB complaint. Not responding to a BBB complaint is almost unheard of, unless of course the corporate officers do not care to begin with. This seems to be my recent experience with Terribles Casino in Las Vegas.
Normally, a customer, who has complaints, should be heard on a much lower level of communication; Slot hosts and marketing directors. If there is no response, a letter is written to the corporate office. If it still goes unheard, it goes to the BBB, and possibly the Gaming Commission. Where do they go if it still goes unheard? Today, we have the Internet, newspapers, and newscasters if they will listen.
My mother and I have been, what we consider to be, dedicated, almost daily patrons of the Terribles Casino in Las Vegas, on Paradise, for approximately 3-4 years now. Shortly after the first of the year, there were a few things that were happening that I did not care for, so I thought I would let them know, thinking, of course, they would like to know. Normally, when good customers complain, customers, who have been dedicated patrons for 3-4 years, and have close to $1,700,000 in, in and out slot play, a slot host or marketing director would respond immediately and amicably. Not at Terribles. They have proven they simply do not care.
One thing they are known for doing is making their customers wait in long lines to the players club. They want you to use their players club card for all of their promotions, but whether or not you actually have one, is of no concern to them. Just to get a replacement card can take 30-40 minutes. While I have been told you can ask a floor supervisor, or pit boss for one; try asking one and see if they will do it. Even the ones that you tip generously will not go out of their way to help you. Some of them use to, and one or two who know us, will, but the new employees they hire, and there are a lot, are simply not trained in customer service. Apparently this attitude starts at the top.
Another thing they are known for doing is pulling progressive jackpots when they get too large. There were four Monte Carlo quarter machines pulled, because one jackpot had reached $15,000 and capped, and another one had gone over $25,200, obviously, not capped. They refused to respond to my complaint on this. I had to call the gaming commission to make sure it was legal, which it is, as long as they put the money back onto the floor. Apparently, they did, but broke the amounts up into "smaller" amounts through different machines. While this might be legal, it certainly is not right. Not when dedicated customers have been playing those machines and hoping to hit the progressive amounts. Our money built those amounts. Generally, they add one cent to the progressive amount for every dollar you put in. They certainly made enough off these progressives to pay them.
The one thing that truly sent me over the edge was a misprint in their quarterly magazine. They had advertised "Terribles Chevron" gas cards, only to be used at Terribles, a $100 card for 20,000 points (one point equals one dollar). Well, when we went to get one, we were advised that was a misprint and could not have one for that. They were 40,000 points. To honor this misprint would have cost them absolutely nothing, because it was card that could only be used at "their" service stations.
In actuality, it did cost them a great deal. It cost them two customers who generate $1,700,000 in slot play a year, and two customers who will no longer use their service stations, convenience centers, or car washes. A good "Slot Host" or "Marketing Director" has the authority to make good customers happy, and what Tawnya Moens, our slot host, should have done, is walk behind the counter and issue a $100 card at no charge, knowing there were a list of complaints that she had never responded to in the first place. It would have cost the company nothing, and kept two good daily patrons coming back to their establishments. We would have used the $100 at their service stations, money right back into their pocket, and then gone back out onto the casino floor, happy to play $100 or more. Instead, she advised there was nothing she could do, and that "I" should talk to the Marketing Director, Mark Sterbens Jr. I told her that was not my place it was hers. Well, she did, and the only response I received to any of my complaints was a very passive aggressive response from Mark Sterbens Jr. that "Perhaps Terribles wasn't the right place for us to play."
Needless to say, we have not been back since. I did write a letter to the BBB, which was responded to by Mark Sterbens Sr. (the father of Mark Sterbens Jr.) matter of factly stating that everything they did was legal, never to us as dedicated patrons. I rebutted his response, which was never responded to and has been in limbo at the BBB for months now. I also wrote a letter to their President, Bill Herbst, which was never responded to, and their GM, Tim Herbst, also never responded to. I suppose I have now fallen into the category of a disgruntled patron, whom they could care less if I returned or not.
Fortunately, there are a lot of Casinos in Las Vegas, and most slot hosts, marketing directors, even Presidents and CEO's, know the value of dedicated "daily" patrons that generate $1,700,000 in play through their casino. I say, shame on them, and would advise that you stay away from any of their establishments.