The Four Winds New Buffalo is a combination hotel, casino, and entertainment venue located in New Buffalo Township, Michigan. It’s the primary casino owned and operated by the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians and has been in operation since 2007. It is built in the style of a traditional Potawatomi lodge and was named one of the 10 best casinos outside of Las Vegas by USA Today in 2015.
This casino went into planning as far back as 1996 and was initially designed by Urban Design Group at the cost of around $180 million. It has a large gaming floor that houses thousands of slot machines and dozens of table games.
11111 Wilson Road, New Buffalo, Michigan, 49117
|Number of slots||2,600|
|Number of table games||48|
|Hotel?||Yes, 415 rooms.|
|Minimum age to gamble?||21|
Online Gambling at Four Winds
Michigan legislators passed an online gambling bill, including sports betting and online casinos, at the end of 2019. They have not been given the green light to launch and it will likely be late 2020 or early 2021 before Michigan online gambling launches. Four Winds launched its live retail sportsbook at the casino, though, in July 2020.
The Pokagon Band of Native Americans was provided with the ability to develop casinos in 2007 as a federally recognized tribe. The first to be built was Four Winds New Buffalo, which was developed through a compact with Michigan and the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. As the oldest of the Four Winds casinos, it is the most well-known and also operates as the largest casino owned by the tribe.
Planning took decades, and the existing casino offers a unique design that the other Four Winds casinos have emulated in their ways. A significant expansion to the casino occurred in 2011 as the casino saw lots of success in the community. The expansion included a nine-story hotel tower with a total of 250 rooms next to the existing hotel tower.
Also, the expansion would bring in a 1,600 seat events and theater center to add additional entertainment to the property. The event center is right next to the Four Winds New Buffalo as a way to offer concerts by major musical acts, as well as banquets, special events, and conferences.
Today, the Four Winds New Buffalo offers a gaming floor of 130,000 square feet with more than 3,00 slot machines and 60 table games, including roulette, blackjack, poker, and craps. It also offers a selection of dining options, including a Hard Rock Café that opened in 2012. The Silver Creek Event Center is the on-site concert and event venue which has had major performers like Diana Ross, ZZ Top, Patti LaBelle, Colbie Caillat, and Gladys Knight.
The loyalty program offered by all of the Four Winds casinos is the W♣ Players Club. One of the biggest perks of this program is that you can use the same player’s card to gamble, dine, shop, and enjoy entertainment at all four of the Four Winds casinos. To sign up, all a visitor needs to do is visit the Players Club booth and show government photo identification.
There are four tiers available through the loyalty program, including the following:
- Red Card – For new members and those who have less than 50,000 points for the year, this card offers free slot play, Kids Quest credit, dining credit, and discounts on gift shop merchandise.
- Veterans Card – Available only for U.S military veteran, this card offers all the same perks as the Red Card. However, it also provides 20% off of dining at any Four Winds casino restaurants.
- Copper Card – This card is for those with at least 50,000 points. It has additional benefits such as priority lines at the Buffet, exclusive access for a player and a guest at the Players Lounge, priority parking, and 20% many retail stores in the hotel.
- Premier Card – Only available by exclusive invitation by an Executive Host.
Yes. The Buffet is located at the Four Winds New Buffalo and offers a selection of all you can eat cuisine from around the globe. There are select days that offer hand-carved meats, seafood buffets, and other specialties.
24 hours a day. As with most other casinos in Michigan, the Four Winds New Buffalo is open around the clock. In addition, it is open every day of the year, including major holidays like Christmas, Easter, and Thanksgiving.
Twenty-one years old. Michigan law allows some forms of gambling for those who are 18 or older. However, this only applies to locations that do not serve alcohol. As such, all Four Winds casinos only allow in those 21 or older.
Yes. There is an attached hotel to the Four Winds New Buffalo, which offers 415 rooms for guests. Originally the hotel opened with 165 rooms, but 250 more rooms are added to the establishment in 2012.
Yes. There are areas free of smoke in the hotel lobby, in specific hotel rooms, and at certain table games. The Four Winds New Buffalo also offers a smoke-free slot room. Also, the facility offers 20′ ceilings and a top of the line air exchange and ventilation system.