Letters

Letters 09-07-2015

DEJA VUE Traverse City faces the same question as faced by Ann Arbor Township several years ago. A builder wanted to construct a 250-student Montessori school on 7.78 acres. The land was zoned for suburban residential use. The proposed school building was permissible as a “conditional use.”

The Court Overreached Believe it or not, everyone who disagrees with the court’s ruling on gay marriage isn’t a hateful bigot. Some of us believe the Supreme Court simply usurped the rule of law by legislating from the bench...

Some Diversity, Huh? Either I’ve been misled or misinformed about the greater Traverse City area. I thought that everyone there was so ‘all inclusive’ and open to other peoples’ opinions and, though one may disagree with said person, that person was entitled to their opinion(s)...

Defending Good People I was deeply saddened to read Colleen Smith’s letter [in Aug. 24 issue] regarding her boycott of the State Theater. I know both Derek and Brandon personally and cannot begin to understand how someone could express such contempt for them...

Not Fascinating I really don’t understand how you can name Jada Johnson a fascinating person by being a hunter. There are thousands of hunters all over the world, shooting by gun and also by arrow; why is she so special? All the other people listed were amazing...

Back to Mayberry A phrase that is often used to describe the amiable qualities that make Traverse City a great place to live is “small-town charm,” conjuring images of life in 1940s small-town America. Where everyone in Mayberry greets each other by name, job descriptions are simple enough for Sarah Palin to understand, and milk is delivered to your door...

Don’t Be Threatened The August 31 issue had 10 letters(!) blasting a recent writer for her stance on gay marriage and the State Theatre. That is overkill. Ms. Smith has a right to her opinion, a right to comment in an open forum such as Northern Express...

Treat The Sickness Thank you to Grant Parsons for the editorial exposing the uglier residual of the criminalizing of drug use. Clean now, I struggled with addiction for a good portion of my adult life. I’ve never sold drugs or committed a violent crime, but I’ve been arrested, jailed, and eventually imprisoned. This did nothing but perpetuate shame, alienation, loss and continued use...

About A Girl -- Not Consider your audience, Thomas Kachadurian (“About A Girl” column). Preachy opinion pieces don’t change people’s minds. Example: “My view on abortion changed…It might be time for the rest of the country to catch up.” Opinion pieces work best when engaging the reader, not directing the reader...

Disappointed I am disappointed with the tone of many of the August 31 responses to Colleen Smith’s Letter to the Editor from the previous week. I do not hold Ms. Smith’s opinion; however, if we live in a diverse community, by definition, people will hold different views, value different things, look and act different from one another...

Free Will To Love I want to start off by saying I love Northern Express. It is well written, unbiased and always a pleasure to read. I am sorry I missed last month’s article referred to in the Aug. 24 letter titled, “No More State Theater.”

Home · Articles · News · Features · Turtle Creek unveils new $80...
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Turtle Creek unveils new $80 million casino & resort hotel

Al Parker - June 9th, 2008
Complete with a 30-foot water wall, an expansive three-story interior and high-tech lighting to set the mood, Michigan’s newest hotel-casino complex will debut this month.
The new Turtle Creek Hotel and Casino, owned and operated by the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, offers visitors an impressive variety of slot machines, video poker, and table games on its 52,000-square-foot gaming floor.
“It’s going to be a stunning property,” said marketing director Shawn Carlson, a gaming veteran who has been involved in six previous casino openings, including THE Hotel at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. “We’ve put a lot of thought into every aspect of this building.”
Walking toward the casino’s front entrance, visitors stroll past some two dozen freshly-planted “Champion Trees,” from the Champion Tree Project based in Copemish. Impressive lighting, reflecting pools, lush greenery and running water set the exterior mood.

WALL OF WATER
Once inside, guests are greeted by an impressive three-story wall of running water flanked by escalators on each side. High above the gaming floor, colored lighting bathes the surroundings in blue, then green, then red or purple.
The gaming floor’s ultra-high white ceiling gives it an airy, open feel that is seldom found in any casino, let alone any in Michigan. With fresh lines and an inviting vibe, it exudes contemporary elegance.
The complex’s impressive design is the work of Walsh Bishop, a noted architectural firm that has developed casino and hotel projects across the nation for clients such as Hilton, Marriott, Time-Warner/Comcast and several tribes.
Workers were still putting finishing touches on the casino floor, eateries and hotel rooms when Carlson and Barbi Ance, assistant to the hotel director, recently led a tour through the complex, which stands just south of the current Turtle Creek Casino on M-72 in Williamsburg. Donning hard hats, visitors strolled through the new gambling palace where workers are busy getting the place ready for a soft opening on June 17.

GRAND OPENING
A grand opening is set for June 24, while hotel reservations are being accepted for June 25 and beyond. There are 137 rooms in the hotel, plus five suites that will allow guests to relax in elegant comfort.
From upscale toiletries, to the latest high-tech phone system, to a tasteful leather desk pad, the room amenities are impressive, yet practical. Standard room rates are in the $130-$150 a night range, with discounts available for gaming club members.
“We worked hard to get Michigan workers involved in this project,” said Carlson. “About 85 percent of the materials are from Michigan. We really tried hard to buy locally whenever possible.”
Many of the workers on the project are tribal members, according to Ance.
Color tiles and muted colors lend a contemporary, yet relaxing beauty to the gaming floor, restaurants and restrooms. For slot players, the machines are placed on ergonomic tables, complete with comfortable footrests. Blackjack tables are lined with an elegant wooden border rail with openings for ashtrays and cup holders.
The place is loaded with high-tech gadgetry, including two “Towers of Power” that each feature 16 plasma TVs.
Ance has the building’s intricate floor plan well memorized as a result of giving dozens of tours. She leads visitors from room to room, up and down floors, unveiling Turtle Creek’s roomy restrooms, its spacious cloakroom and the state-of-the-art ventilation system that doesn’t recycle air, but pumps in fresh air from the outside.

TRIBAL HISTORY
Unlike some other casinos that splash tribal art throughout their facilities, the Turtle Creek Hotel has dedicated a “cultural corridor,” which houses tribal artwork and tells the history of the Grand Traverse Band. Nearby is a boutique for hotel guests to browse and shop.
The casino’s large gaming floor will feature some 1,300 slot and video poker machines, 42 table games and a poker room, featuring 10 tables and its own bar and waiting area. The table game pits also have their own bar areas.
If you work up an appetite during a gaming session, Turtle Creek offers some distinct dining choices:
• Bourbon 72 is an upscale steakhouse type of eatery, featuring a huge custom wine rack and comforting fireplace. While promising elegance, entrees are still expected to be in the $20-22 price range.
•The spacious terrazzo-tiled Seasons Buffet features several different food stations and will seat about 180 comfortably.
• The Deli features fun red-and-white tile and will offer a wide selection of deli foods and beverages.
• On the third floor, The Coffee Spoon is available for those who want a coffee and a quick nosh during the day. At night, it’ll transform into a hipper wine and martini bar. Near the coffee bar is a relaxing area where customers can sit near the fireplace, sip their java and enjoy a great overview of the expansive gaming floor.
Another great drawing card will be the Level III lounge which features a center bar, several plasma TVs, cozy seating, a DJ booth and a stage. Colored globes add a festive air to Level III, which also features an outdoor party deck.
There’s a specially-designated high limit area with gaming tables and slots, plus a high limit lounge. For some high rollers, there’s also an underground parking area, complete with a car wash.
After the grand opening, demolition is expected to begin in July on the current Turtle Creek Casino, according to Carlson.


 
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