With three Northeast casino-resorts among its growing U.S. portfolio, including its Uncasville, Conn. flagship Mohegan Sun, Mohegan Sun Pocono in northeastern Pennsylvania; and Resorts Casino Hotel in Atlantic City, the Mohegan Tribe literally paves the way for group success.
In June 2016, Mohegan Sun hosted automobile giant Barrett-Jackson’s inaugural Northeast Auction. The property’s largest event ever by volume, the four-day show attracted some 90,000 people—and a major client request.
“Barrett-Jackson pointed out that a ramp connecting our Winter Garage and its parking lot with the Event Center’s service road would enhance the program’s efficiency,” related John Washko, Mohegan Sun’s vice president, exhibitions & convention sales. “After due diligence around environmental impact and related issues, we invested $250,000 in the road. When it comes to business decisions, we move quickly to meet the best interests of the customer.”
Going the extra mile defines Mohegan tradition, going back centuries.
“Multi-generational and long-term in focus, our approach extends from settler days,” explained Washko. “Native American tribes could fight, flee—or partner. Chief Uncas (1598-1683) chose the latter, following the Mohegan philosophy of Aquai. Principled on welcoming, mutual respect, cooperation and building relationships, this guiding spirit permeates the Mohegan Sun guest experience. We want each guest to arrive as a customer and leave as a friend.”
Overseeing that tradition today is Chief Many Hearts, Dr. Marilynn “Lynn” Malerba, who in 2010, became the Tribe’s first woman Chief, a lifetime position, in modern history. Mohegan’s hearth of hospitality, meanwhile, remains an old school original, the family way.
“Our approach is simple,” Washko said. “By taking good care of our team members, they take good care of our guests—who then come back and tell others about the experience.”
Attracting a 70 percent return rate for groups on 100 peak rooms or more, it’s a service model that works. Barrett-Jackson, which drew nearly 100,000 people to the June 2017 edition, is motoring back to Mohegan Sun next summer. That’s when Mohegan Sun expects to unveil its new $80 million Expo Center (also see East section), an investment driven in part by the Barrett-Jackson relationship.
“Partnership and collaboration define the spirit of Aquai,” said Washko. “It’s our guiding light.”