When most people think of gambling locations, one immediately springs to mind. Las Vegas, or Sin City, is a place like no other. The desert metropolis is infamous for its embrace of all things hedonistic and, for that, we love it.
That said, sometimes Vegas can feel a bit stale. If you’ve already taken a trip down to Sin City for a dance with lady luck five or six times before, you might be feeling like a change. These days, there are plenty of other destinations emerging as contenders for the Vegas’s title of Casino King. Here are some of the best.
The Chinese Special Administrative Region of Macau is home to what is comfortably Las Vegas’s largest rival. Host to 40 casinos, Macau has been a mecca for both Chinese and international gamblers for many years. In fact, it was the Portuguese colonial government that introduced the pastime to the nation in the 1850s. In 1961, Jaime Silvério Marques, the Governor at the time, declared Macau a “permanent gaming region”, which led to favorable taxation for companies working in the industry.
Bigger than Vegas, but is it better
Macau has exploded in terms of its gambling infrastructure since. In fact, the area’s casinos regularly take more than Las Vegas, with the average gambler wagering more than $1,300 compared with the $156 each Vegas punter takes to the tables.
Perhaps the highlight of Macau’s gambling experience is the frankly vast Venetian Macao. It’s the world’s largest designated casino and features a gaming area measuring a massive 376,000 square feet. If you head over to Macau, we highly recommend a few spins on one of its 3,400 machines or a flutter at your choice of 800 tables.
Whilst the UK’s capital certainly doesn’t have the Las Vegas sunshine, it does offer an altogether different gambling experience. Whereas a trip to Las Vegas or Macau often revolves exclusively around gambling, your time spent in London will probably involve more than just endless sessions at the felt.
Historic sites such as Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, the Tower of London, and many more besides all provide great reasons to get out of the casino for a few hours during the daylight hours.
That’s not to say London doesn’t have great gambling though. Across the metropolis, you’ll discover 28 different casinos. All budgets and tastes are catered for in London’s gambling venues. For high rollers wanting an exclusive, opulent experience, Les Ambassadeurs Club or The Ritz London will surely delight with their luxurious elegance. Meanwhile, those looking for a more casual (and lower stakes!) game of poker in relaxed surroundings will likely enjoy “The Vic” (the Victoria Grosvenor Casino).
Singapore has nowhere near the history of either Las Vegas, London, Macau, or some of the other destinations on this list. That’s not to say you should write it off though. Home to one of the planet’s largest banking centers, there’s plenty of money going through the island-state’s gambling venues.
Visitors to Singapore will mostly find the nation’s land-based casinos towards the south of the island. Easily the most extravagant of them is the Marina Bay Sands Casino. This 115,000 square foot gambling paradise is home to around 500 different gaming tables and a massive 1,600 slot machines. Those high rollers wanting a more secluded experience will also appreciate the venue’s 30 private salons too.
One of the coolest aspects about gambling in Singapore is the fact that many casinos are based offshore. The Aegean Paradise Cruise is up there with the most popular. This vast cruise liner is dedicated to gambling. It features 40 tables with all the casino classics offered, as well as a decent number of slot machines.
You’ll find that minimum bets are much lower aboard gambling vessels like the Aegean Paradise. A suite for the night also won’t break the bank, allowing for round the clock action!
India probably isn’t the first place you think of when you picture a gambling vacation. With religion a large part of Indian society, you’d be forgiven for presuming there would be no organized gambling at all in the nation. For the most part, you’d be right. If the authorities consider the game to be purely luck based, it is indeed illegal. Peculiarly, horse racing is considered a game of skill in most parts of the region.
The major exception to this is Goa. The state introduced legislation that allowed gambling in 1976. This led to the state emerging as a hub for gambling in the nation. There are now numerous land-based casinos and a handful of offshore ones to boot.
For a truly memorable Indian gambling experience, why not plan a trip to Goa around the time of the India Poker Championship. The Big Daddy Casino cruise liner hosts the crown jewel of the nation’s tournament calendar.
If you’ve always wanted to play a seriously big poker tournament but never had the bankroll for the WSOP or EPT, India might be the perfect place for you. The buy-in for the IPC main event is around 50,000 IRN ($700) and there are also three other well-attended, title tournaments over a five-day period. Oh, and the buffet on board is excellent!
Supporting a thriving gambling scene since 1863 is Monte Carlo. Easily one of the most elegant and opulent destinations to enjoy a punt, the tax haven draws some of the highest rollers around.
The best casino in the world?
If you’re heading to Monte Carlo for a gambling trip, you’ll definitely want to hit up the Place du Casino. There you’ll find the Casino de Monte Carlo – the ultimate in luxury. From the outside, it looks more like a royal residence. Inside, the décor is similar, except for the huge number of gaming tables and slots, of course. Also close to the Place de Casino is the slot haven that is Casino Café de Paris and the one-stop-shop resort of Sun Casino.
Into the Virtual World?
Of course, you don’t even need to leave your house to get some gambling action away from Las Vegas. With their extensive live offerings, online casinos are giving an increasingly competitive experience to the real-world casino.
If you think there is hardly any difference between GTA Casino and real money versions online like Nodeposit365.com., think again. Online casinos these days offer everything you’d find in the best gambling venues in the world and much more besides. Minimum bets are lower, the game selection is more diverse, and the bonuses are much better too. The only real difference is the social experience. However, that’s starting to change too.
With more game developers working on virtual reality gambling products, the line between the real world and the digital is further blurring. Still, in their infancy, the products promise to immerse players in a “real” virtual casino. Efforts like Social Club VR: Casino Nights by Oculus give an early glimpse as to where the industry might be heading.