A Vee Quiva Staycation


My wife and I spent the last couple of days at Vee Quiva Resort and Casino in Laveen and it was … well … nice, in a Vee Quiva sort of way.

Until last July, Vee Quiva remained the last of the old school reservation casinos here in the Phoenix area – dingy and dark and smoky and generally, well, Vee Quiva. (Its two sister casinos serving the East Valley, Lone Butte and Wild Horse Pass, already had modernized; we don’t expect such things in the West Valley.

Last July, however, construction was completed on the casino and resort, resort in this case meaning a 100-odd room boutique hotel with a pool shaped like a Chevrolet logo and new digs for the casino.

For those with some money, won or otherwise, to spend, there’s Ditka’s Steakhouse. The crab bisque, amazingly, was one of the best I’ve ever had.

There’s a 24-hour cafe and also a food court with one local option, Los Reyes de la Torta, and three chains – Fatburger, Dunkin Donuts and Panda Express.

There’s no buffet which makes sense if only because this is, well, Vee Quiva.

Like to play poker? If you know how to play, you may want to run like hell from the poker room. The running joke is Jack-6 is the “Vee Quiva nuts” (best hand for the straights in the crowd) and you’re guaranteed to get sucked out on a the river. Because you’re not playing poker. You’re playing poker in, well, Vee Quiva.

IMG_1832Want to take your bags to your room and need a luggage cart? Sorry, you’ll need to wait for the one (!) bell person on duty. They’re the only people authorized to push the one (!) luggage cart. Which makes sense because this is, well, Vee Quiva.

No towels at the pool because it’s been closed by lightning but no one thought to lock the electronic door? Makes perfect sense because this is, well, Vee Quiva.

And yet for all that … for all of it’s, well, Vee Quiva-ness, I’m kinda fond of the place. Of course, I also was a fan of what used to be the Ramada Express in Laughlin. (Apparently the Tropicana bought it since my last trip in 2000. Must have happened after Moe Greene was shot in the eye.)

For us, driving the 30 minutes down from Glendale, it was a nice little staycation.

For those looking for something a little more permanent in the area, a place where you have easy access to Interstate 10 and still are close enough to take advantage of a very-much-worth-it $3.95 “Eggs Any Way, All Day” special in the diner, here are a few ideas down Laveen way …

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Jonathan Dalton

Jonathan Dalton is a 40-plus-year resident of the Valley and has been helping folks buy and sell homes since 2004. He can be reached at 602-502-9693 or info at allphoenixrealestate.com.