Operator

The Yuhaaviatam of San Manuel Nation

Highland, CA 92346

Based in, California, the Yuhaaviatam of San Manuel Nation were federally recognized in 1975 and operates Yaamava' Resort & Casino.

History 

The Yuhaaviatam of San Manuel Nation were originally known as Yuhaaviatam, a clan of Maara’yam or the People of the Pines. When the Spanish arrived, they referred to the tribe as Serrano, meaning Highlander. Santos Manuel was the name of the Spanish leader who colonised the tribe, which was shortened over time to San Manuel.

In 1891, the Act of Relief for Mission Indians was passed, which officially recognized the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians’ inherent rights to self-govern as a sovereign nation. However, the tribe would become federally recognized in 1975 after the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act was signed. 

The first San Manuel Indian Bingo Hall opened in 1986, which was later transformed into the Yaamava' Resort & Casino.

Tribal Government

The San Manuel Tribal Gaming Commission (SMTGC) was founded to operate as an independent regulatory agency for the Yaamava' Resort & Casino. As such, the SMTGC ensures compliance with all Federal, State and Tribal laws.

The SMTGC has six distinct departments; administration, auditing, compliance, investigations, licensing and surveillance. As part of the overall duties, the Commission is also responsible for handling any disputes that arise from playing at any SMTGC venues.

The Chief Gaming Regulator at the Commission is Adam Torres, who was appointed in September 2015. He is assisted by Carol Healy, who works as Secretary and Treasurer.

Tribal gaming operations

The San Manuel Nation own and operate two casinos, the Yaamava' Resort & Casino in California and Palms Casino Resort near the Las Vegas Strip.

Yaamava' Resort & Casino

Located in Highland, California, the Yaamava' Resort & Casino has 7,200 slot machines, 150 table games and five high-limit gaming rooms including 40 high-limit tables and over 200 high-limit slots. There are also translation services available for Spanish, Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, Japanese and Arabic customers.

The casino also has a premium VIP salon called The Vault. This includes lockers, private bathrooms and a personalised cashier service, plus handcrafted cocktails and alcohol served from 8am. The gaming here has increased denomination limits, with 200+ slot machines, eight table games and additional tables that have limits up to $25,000.

The venue also has a 17-story, 432-room hotel where guests can stay overnight.

Palms Casino Resort

Located in Paradise, Nevada, this location of the Palms Casino Resort was originally bought by George Maloof in 1997, but the casino wouldn’t be opened until November 15, 2001.

The casino would go through various periods of ownership, until it was sold by Red Rock to the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians for $650m. The casino was then reopened on April 27, 2022.

As for facilities, the Palms Casino Resort has 1.500 slot machines, keno, bingo and over 50 tables games. The casino also offers poker and a sportsbook.

Renovations

The San Manuel Nation opened its first bingo hall on July 24, 1986. This was called San Manuel Indian Bingo and predated the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act by two years. 

The casino would undergo its first major renovation in 1994 when it would be transformed from a bingo hall into a casino. This would increase the venue by over 100,000sq ft, with the casino including both a gaming floor, slot machines and a dedicated card room. The San Manuel Indian Bingo was then renamed to San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino.

When Proposition 5 was passed in 1998 and Proposition 1A in 2000, the casino expanded its tribal gaming for what the new legislations allowed for.

With tribal gaming only growing in size, the San Manuel Nation underwent an amenity enhancement project in 2003 to expand its gaming offerings. 

Another significant renovation was completed in 2017, when the bingo hall was officially closed down and replaced with slot machines. As part of this, the ‘bingo’ aspect was dropped from the title and the venue was renamed San Manuel Casino and the logo was also altered.

The biggest renovation was a $760m project was started in 2018 and finally finished in 2021. This saw the venue renamed once again to Yaamava' Resort and Casino, the tribe's word for “spring” which they explained was a metaphor for the rebirth of the casino. As for facilities, the San Manuel Nation introduced a 17-story hotel tower that offered 432 rooms and suites.

The 2021 expansion also saw two new floors of gaming space as well as the addition of 1,300 slot machines, 40 table games, a dedicated high-limit gaming area, three retail stores and two restaurants. 

Non-gaming operations

As well as the hotel at Yaamava' Resort & Casino, the San Manuel Nation also owns five additional hotels. These are the Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort & Club, Bear Springs Hotel, Three Fires, Four Fires and The Draftsman.

San Manuel Landing is a commercial center and industrial complex that will include on-site electric charging for trucks and other vehicles. There is also the Congressional Building, a 12,000-square-foot, three-story building near Capitol Hill that is used for government relations and commercial real estate purposes.

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