Morongo Casino Resort & Spa: California Indian Casinos 2023

When it comes to the best Indian casinos in California, few offer more than what Morongo Casino Resort & Spa provides. This iconic casino is located near San Gorgonio Pass in the Palm Springs area — just 90 miles east of Los Angeles.

It features tons of high-quality amenities and gambling activities, making it a great place to spend your next vacation.

The Morongo Band of Mission Indians owns the casino.

Morongo Casino Fact Table

Year Opened2004
Phone Number951-849-3080
Address49500 Seminole Dr, Cabazon, CA 92230
Number of Games4,000 slot machines, 80 table games, 20-table poker room
Minimum Gambling Age18 years old

Casino Games Offered at Morongo

Morongo features a 150,000-square-foot casino floor that includes 4,000 slot machines, 80 table games, and a 20-table poker room. In that room, patrons can play enjoy a variety of poker games like Texas hold’em and seven-card stud.

There’s also a 147-slot non-smoking room.

With the table games, guests can enjoy anything from blackjack to roulette, craps, baccarat, and more.

But Morongo’s slots are arguably the biggest attraction. Its slot machines collection includes some of the newest games in the entire Palm Springs area. Slot costs are between a single cent up to $100, and you can find traditional reel games plus a bunch of new video machines, as well as video poker.

Some of the most popular slot options include:

  • Wheel of Fortune
  • Lightning Links
  • Walking Dead II
  • Buffalo Grand
  • Elvis
  • Dragon Link
  • Ultimate-X Video Poker
  • Monopoly Money Hot Shot

There’s also a high-limit slot room area for games that pay out large sums.

Aside from these casino games and poker, you’ll also be able to enjoy a collection of classic table games like Fortune Pai Gow, 3 Card Poker, and Mississippi Stud. Many of these games take low bets or buy-ins but still include the potential for big winnings.

Most of the gaming tables at Morongo are dedicated to these “Cal games,” which feature special rules and can be found at other legal California casinos. Essentially, these Cal games are just modified table games.

Additionally, there’s a 440-seat bingo room. Not only does this accommodate bingo lovers with events every week, but it also comes with top-notch amenities for comfortable bingo playing.

Although Morongo doesn’t offer poker tournaments, the 20-table poker room does have special prizes, including high hand of the hour giveaways and cash square progressive jackpots. It is the only 18+ casino in California with an active poker room.

Morongo Cashless Gaming

In 2022, Morongo introduced cashless gaming with Money Klip. Gamblers can sign up for Money Klip at the cashier’s cage and load up to $5,000 on their Morongo Rewards Card at any of the casino slot machines.

Guests can spend money from their Rewards Card to play a slot machine, or they can even put more money in their account at the slot machine.

No matter how guests use Money Klip, cashless gaming at Morongo Casino allows gamblers to keep their cash at home.

Morongo Casino Gambling Age

Morongo is among the 18+ casinos in California. There are 16 such casinos, and Morongo is the biggest. That means, as long as you are 18 and over, you can legally gamble at Morongo. However, the drinking age at Morongo is still 21.

Morongo Events

Morongo is more than just a gaming casino. It’s also a place where you can find a variety of entertainment events and dining options that make it a holistic casino experience.

Each year, it hosts several concerts, parties, and special events — stars like Michael Buble and Enrique Iglesias have appeared on the main Morongo stage more than once. Comedy shows are also included from time to time. 

Morongo reserves 80,000 square feet for its events and entertainment venues. It also features a 12,000-square-foot ballroom that accommodates banquets, weddings, and business meetings. You’ll be able to reserve the space for your own social get-together if you like. The space holds up to 600 guests, but you must reserve far in advance.

There’s an additional 27th-floor restaurant and ballroom, Cielo, that features panoramic views of the surrounding canyons and hanging chandeliers for added ambiance.

Morongo Amenities and Features

Morongo also has a lot to offer in terms of dining.

There are several restaurants worth your time, including a Las Vegas-style buffet and a dedicated restaurant called Cielo, which offers fine dining and a selection of top-tier wines and spirits. There’s also The Marketplace, a self-serve all-you-can-eat experience with different stations of food from around the world.

Sunset Bar & Grill is great for classic Mexican food, plus the Good Times Café serves breakfast items if you want to hang out in the casino during the first part of the day. In total, there are eight separate eating and drinking establishments within Morongo.

Lastly, many visitors will want to check out the dedicated spa at Morongo, which also includes salon services. Visitation to the spa is often part of the package when you reserve a room at the 27-story casino hotel, which includes 36 suites and 272 guest rooms. Check your reservation to see if you qualify.

There’s also plenty to do nearby. The Desert Hills Premium Outlets and the Cabazon Outlets are located near Morongo and offer over 130 premium retail stores. Canyon Lanes is located nearby with a Blacklight Family Bowl on Friday nights.

Guests at Morongo have easy access to two 18-hole championship golf courses at Tukwet Canyon. The facilities are senior-friendly and the courses are great for the beginner, novice, and experienced golfer.

Morongo Casino Promotions

2023 Chinese New Year Celebration

To celebrate the Year of the Rabbit, Morongo Casino will offer several Chinese New Year promotions from Jan. 22 through Feb. 6.

🐇 Monday, Jan. 23 — FREEBIE: Stop at the promotions counter Jan. 23 to get a free Chinese fan.

🐇 Mozen Asian Kitchen: From Jan. 22 through Feb. 28, Mozen Asian Kitchen will serve Life Long Noodles for $22. These are: Longevity Noodles stir-fried with chicken, beef, shrimp, scallions, white onion, and shredded carrot.

🐇 The Marketplace: Morongo’s all-you-can-eat buffet will have Chinese New Year specials at seven eating stations.

🐇 Good Times Cafe: From Jan. 22-29, Good Times Cafe will serve Steamed White Fish for $25.99. This meal includes: onion, pepper, white rice, ginger-garlic cabbage, lemon-sweet chili soy sauce, crispy noodles, and sponge cake.

🐇 Pescato: From Jan. 22 through Feb. 5, Pescato will serve Seafood Miso Udon for $42. This meal includes: udon noodles, miso broth, crab, clams, mussels, shrimp, tofu, and nori.

🐇 Fiesta Taco: On Jan. 22, Fiesta Taco at Morongo will serve Asian Shrimp Tacos for $3.99 each. These tacos contain: kimchi slaw, sweet and spicy aioli, garlic-lime grilled shrimp, lime, cilantro, and sliced jalapeño.

🐇 Lion and Dragon Dancers: From 7-10 p.m. Jan. 27-28 and Feb. 3-4, traditional Chinese lion and dragon dancers will perform on the Morongo Casino floor.

🐇 Chris Wong: On Jan. 22, musician Chris Wong will perform in the Morongo Ballroom. Doors open at 4 p.m. and the concert begins at 5 p.m.

Tier Bonus

$500 Drawings

Every Wednesday and Thursday in January, Morongo Rewards members who are among the 42 $500 cash giveaway selections will receive an extra bonus based on their Morongo Rewards tier:

  • Titanium — $10 at The Marketplace
  • Gold — $20 at The Marketplace
  • Black — $50 at The Marketplace
  • Tiger — $100 at The Marketplace

Rice Attack Fridays

Every Friday in January, two Morongo Rewards members will be selected every hour from 1-8 p.m. for a chance to compete for a $1,500 first-place prize. The winner will get an extra prize based on their tier level:

  • Titanium — $50 slot free play
  • Gold — $100 slot free play
  • Black — $125 slot free play
  • Tiger — $150 slot free play

Party Pit Fridays

Every Friday in January, qualified Morongo Rewards members from winning tables during drawings from 2-10 p.m. will get an additional prize based on their tier level:

  • Titanium — $10 at The Marketplace
  • Gold — $20 at The Marketplace
  • Black — $50 at The Marketplace
  • Tiger — $100 at The Marketplace

Morongo Sportsbook

If Prop 26 had passed in November’s election, there could have been sports betting at Morongo Casino some time in 2023. However, Prop 26 — and Prop 27, would would have legalized online sports gambling via apps like DraftKings California — failed miserably at the polls.

That means tribes will have to wait until the 2024 election for another chance at legalizing in-person sports betting.

And that means those retail sportsbooks at Indian casinos like Morongo wouldn’t open until 2025 at the earliest.

So, does Morongo currently have a sportsbook and accept sports bets? No. It’s not yet legal.

Would Morongo be one of the California casinos most likely to launch a retail sportsbooks became legal? Yes.

For now, until there is legal California sports betting, Morongo has a massive sports bar with 20 55-inch TVs to watch all the big games. It also does well to come up with promotions to go along with the NFL season.

$80,000 Playoffs Payoffs

From Jan. 14-29, every time a team scores in an NFL playoff game, a splash pot will be given to any table in Morongo’s poker room with four or more players. Field goals will be $25, touchdowns will get $50, and safeties will get $100.

Big Game Blitz

Morongo is using its ballroom to play host to the Big Game Blitz, a Super Bowl watch party extravaganza with food, drinks, photos, and giveaways.

Tickets cost $60 and doors open 2 p.m. on Feb. 12. The game starts at 3:30 p.m. Tickets can be found at tickermaster.com, but Morongo is also offering a package of two tickets and a one-night stay in the hotel for $229. In addition, guests who take advantage of this offer will get $20 in free play.

2023 Big Game Blowout

Morongo will be giving away $10,000 in Big Game Bonus Hotseats during the Super Bowl.

 

Morongo History

Like all tribal casinos in California, Morongo is legal because of agreements between California’s state government and the local Indian tribes. These agreements allow Indian casinos to offer gambling even though it’s against California state law. Why? Because tribal reservations are technically not part of state soil, so it isn’t bound to state laws.

Morongo originally opened in 1995 under the name Casino Morongo. At the time, it only included a dance hall, diner, and bowling alley. The casino was still under negotiation between tribal and state authorities.

The casino finally opened on Dec. 10, 2004. Since then, Morongo has remained one of the largest tribal casinos in the entire country. By number of slot machines, it’s the third-largest casino in California. The casino, specifically, closed in 2014 only to reopen in 2018 as a separate building in order to expand its gaming space even further.

These days, you can still find the original bowling alley, a nightclub, and other entertainment venues on the original casino’s ground. However, the primary Morongo Casino Resort & Spa building now houses most of the gaming activities and the main spa. The building includes the hotel as well.

Morongo Casino Resort & Spa FAQs

Where is Morongo Casino?

Morongo Casino is in Cabazon, California, just outside Palm Springs and 89 miles east of Los Angeles. The Morongo Casino address is 49500 Seminole Dr, Cabazon, CA 92230.

Which casino is better: Morongo or Pechanga?

It really depends on what matters most to you. If you’re looking for a casino with more slot machines, then Pechanga is better — with 5,400 slots compared to Morongo’s 4,000. If you’re looking for a large non-smoking section, then Morongo is better — with a 147-slot non-smoking room compared to Pechanga’s 38-slot non-smoking room.

All in all, Pechanga is a little bigger with a handful more dining and drinking options, as well as more games to play. However, in terms of quality, for both casino gaming and resort experience, it’s hard to split hairs between Morongo and Pechanga.

What is the Morongo Casino age limit?

18. Morongo Casino Resort & Spa is an 18+ casino. It is one of 16 California casinos that allow patrons 18 and over. Most other Indian casinos set their age limits to 21 years old to prevent underage drinking on their premises. 

How far is Morongo from Los Angeles?

Morongo Casino is 89 miles east of Los Angeles, just outside Palm Springs. Depending on traffic, the drive could take anywhere from 1.5-2.5 hours.

What slots does Morongo Casino have?

Morongo Casino has 4,000 slots machines to choose from, as of January 2023. Some of the most popular slot games include Pot O’ Gold, Dragon Link, Double Wolf, Buffalo Gold, Loteria, Ocean Magic, and Game Kings.

How much is the buffet at Morongo Casino?

It costs $46.99 per adult and $23.99 for kids 9 and under to eat at The Marketplace, Morongo Casino’s all-you-can-eat buffet. It’s closed Mondays and Tuesdays. It’s open 4-9 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays, 4-10 p.m. on Fridays, 3-10 p.m. on Saturdays, and 3-9 p.m. on Sundays.

What time does Morongo Casino close?

Morongo Casino is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Its gaming floor does not close. Hours can vary for different restaurants, bars, and amenities, but gambling is always a 24/7 option.

Does Morongo have a sportsbook?

No. There is currently no sports betting at Morongo Casino, as sports betting is not legal in California. With Prop 26 — and Prop 27 — failing in the 2022 election, tribes will have to wait until the 2024 ballot for another crack at legalizing in-person sports betting. If retail sportsbooks do ever become legal in California, Morongo, the state’s third-largest casino, would be a prime candidate — perhaps with assistance from an established brand like FanDuel.

Who regulates the gambling at Morongo Casino?

Since the casino is a tribal establishment, Morongo is regulated by the National Indian Gaming Commission.

Is there self-parking at Morongo Casino?

Yes. There is self-parking along with the option for valet.

About the Author

Amber Hoffman

Amber is the Managing Editor of California Casinos. She writes for a variety of websites in diverse industries, including gaming and travel and is a fan of international football (not "soccer") and Gaelic sports.