When one thinks of casinos, it is always Las Vegas. For most of us, that is the first and the only thing that comes to our mind, but may be that is because of the movies. But, what people do not know is that the casinos of Macau has more gambling revenues than the ones in Las Vegas. Traditionally, Macau, located on the east coast of China and south of Hong Kong was known to be a Portuguese old colony with some heritage monuments, churches and good Portuguese tarts and other baked items. Gambling used to exist, but in a very nascent form and preferred only by people from China.
Today, casinos account for more than half of Macau’s GDP. The biggest players are from China and Hong Kong. Casinos are such a big attraction here that people from Hong Kong and mainland China come every weekend to try their luck and this has led to a special weekend price in Macau where the price of hotels and everything related to tourism doubles for the weekend. This increased demand for gambling has ensured that the traditional Chinese style of gambling got morphed into the more international style with more western casino brands joining in on the casino brigade.
The demand is so high that the tourists who come to Macau are more casino tourists than general tourists looking to explore the UNESCO World heritage site, eat some local food and do some shopping. The casinos and their five star hotels have risen up to this demand by coming up with great shows and unique experiences. Some do the laser show. Some do the water show. Others do the culture show with dragons and more. Then, there is the house of the dancing water, a very popular dance show. All these shows evolved around the casino business.
There are about 33 casinos in Macau. Some of the key names include ‘The Venetian’, Wynn Casino, Casino Lisboa, Sands Casino and others. Out of these the biggest is the Venetian, which is entirely modeled after Venice and has its own waterways and gondolas. A lot of tourists who come to Macau over the weekend have just enough time to explore the Venetian. Such is its size. The best part about all these casinos is that anyone can enter, play any amount of money and play any game of their liking. All you need to be is dressed decently. This is not because it is a rule, but it is because everyone else is very well dressed and if you are dressed poorly, then you stand out easily.
Inside the casino, you can notice a multitude of games being played: poker, blackjack, roulette, boule, Sic bo, Fan Tan, keno, slot machines of amazing varieties and much more. Depending on one’s budget, one can pay the cash and get the equivalent in chips and pick any table or machine of their liking. If you are new to the gambling world, it is worthwhile to be a spectator on a table or a slot machine, just to help you understand the rules and the possible techniques of winning. If you are on a short time leash, you can practice online though online gambling sites and hone your skills. Ideally, this should help you understand the basics and even some level of logic, but it is much different when you play on a table with real people.
The casino life begins after sunset and goes on till sunrise. It is during this time that you will find that the Chinese are getting very rich and also see some of the finest cars and clothes on display. The latest Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche, Rolls Royce, etc would be vrooming their engines in the quiet night of Macau and all the people sitting inside it would display their Gucci, Versace, Armani, Prada and other designer labels. These casinos form a good holiday for the normal tourist who is looking to break away from his monotonous life and indulge in some fun.