Raise your hand if you’ve ever dreamed of breaking the bank at poker as a new James Bond while sipping on your Martini. Yes, we’ve been there too. Casinos have the power to summon this 007 charm, with their unbridled luxury and the smell of richness lingering in the air. Here’s a selection of the 10 best casinos in Europe, where the hypnotic sound of the slot machines meets timeless elegance.
HOTEL SPLENDID CASINO ROYALE – MONTENEGRO
It may be disappointing to know that, even though the name pays a tribute to it, this isn’t the location of 2006 James Bond’s Casino Royale. Yet do not despair: the luxury of this 5-star resort perfectly matches that of Martin Campbell’s movie.
The gaming room, open 24/7, it’s not huge, and this enhances the feeling of exclusiveness. Here you’ll find all the most popular games: electronic Black Jack, Texas Hold’em Poker, Russian Poker, Caribbean Stud poker, Black Jack, electronic roulettes and slot machines.
Between a bet and the other, take some time to relax while contemplating Budva‘s Riviera, right in front of the resort, and maybe try out some of the Asian and Mediterranean delicacies offered by the hotel’s two restaurants.
Bečići bb, Budva 85310, Montenegro
+382 33 773 777
CASINÒ DI VENEZIA – ITALY
More than just a casino, the Casinò di Venezia is a historic landmark. In fact, the palace in Ca’ Vendramin Calergi hosts the oldest gambling parlour in the world. Founded in 1638, the Casinò finds its scenic location on the Canal Grande, the perfect background for a night of good luck.
Inside are featured all the classic games – French Roulette, Midi Trente et Quarante, Black Jack, Caribbean Poker, Fair Roulette, Chemin de Fer, slot machines – and rooms are often seen during international tournaments, such as the Texas hold ’em poker one.
The venue also features the Ristorante Wagner, with its menu revisiting in a charming way the recipes of the Venetian tradition.
Cannaregio, 2040, 30121 Venice, Italy
+39 041 529 7111
CASINO LISBOA – LISBON, PORTUGAL
From an elder jewel to a modern pearl. Opened in 2006, the Casino Lisboa flaunts an avant-garde architecture and a surface of 165.000 square meters, thus being considered the ninth biggest casino in the world.
The structure is that of the former Pavilhão do Futuro (Pavilion of the Future), as seen during the Portuguese Universal Exposition in 1998; a steel-and-glass masterpiece, covered in multimedia installations. And with more than 1100 slot machines, 26 gaming tables, a poker-exclusive room, an auditorium and 7 among bars and restaurants, you can rest assured that you’ll never get bored.
Alameda dos Oceanos Lote 1.03.01, 1990-204 Lisbon, Portugal
+351 21 892 9000
CASINO BARRIÈRE D’ENGHIEN-LES-BAINS – PARIS, FRANCE
This lakefront casino seems to embody all the labels of Parisian luxury. The Belle Époque-style facade pleasantly contrasts with the huge windows covering the building, while the intermitting lights coming from the slot machines mix with the gold-encrusted ceilings that remind of a Klimt painting.
Here are 43 gaming tables where to play French Roulette, Black Jack, Punto Banco, Poker o English Roulette; and also 500 slot machines, 72 Video Poker and a vintage theatre that features jazz and comedy shows.
All just 14km away from the Champs-Élysées.
3 Avenue de Ceinture, 95880 Enghien-Les-Bains, France
+33 1 39 34 13 17
DRAGONARA CASINO – MALTA
A massive building, reminding of a Greek temple yet mixed with some late-Romantic madness, dominates the cape of St. Julian in Malta. It’s the Dragonara Casino, the most important casino on an island bursting with gaming parlours.
This imposing structure features 300 slot machines, 15 gaming tables and a poker room that seems to dive into St. George’s Bay.
The icing on the cake is the Brasserie restaurant, where Italian Chef Claudio Schiavone has fun while playing with the leit motives of the Mediterranean cuisine.
Dragonara Road, St. Julian, Malta
+356 2092 1000
CASINÒ DE LA VALLÉE – SAINT-VINCENT, ITALY
The mountains surrounding the Casinò de la Vallée in Saint-Vincent seem just taken out of a fable. Located among Aosta Valley’s peeks, the casino features 400 video machines, tables for Black Jack, Chemin de fer, French and American Roulette, Punto Banco and Trente Quarante, as well as a poker room that often hosts international tournaments.
Raising the stakes is also the direct connection to Grand Hôtel Billia, another straight-out-of-a-fairytale venue with a centennial history.
Viale Piemonte, 72, 11027 Saint-Vincent, Aosta Valley, Italy
CASINO COSMOPOL – STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN
A majestic XVIII century building turned into a temple of divertissement: it’s the Casino Cosmopol in Stockholm, living proof of how those luxurious parlours are perfectly suitable to host high profile gambling.
The casino features 46 gaming tables including Roulette, Black Jack, Punto Banco and Oasis Stud Poker, as well as more than 400 slot machines. Yet its flagship feature is the live poker room, the only legal one in Stockholm, headquarter of the Swedish Open tournament.
Kungsgatan 65, 111 22 Stockholm, Sweden
+46 20 21 92 19
THE CASINO AT THE EMPIRE – LONDON, UK
With its light-bursting facade and its over-the-top architecture, the Casino at the Empire in London has nothing to envy to its cousins in Las Vegas. Gambling pros will also tell you that even the atmosphere actually resembles that of some institutions such as the Bellagio.
87 electronic roulettes, hundreds of video slot machines, gaming tables that include Black Jack, Punto Banco and American roulette: at the Empire entertainment should never, ever end. That’s why its rooms have no windows so that no distraction from the outside will disturb your game.
Moreover, if you have a craving for Asian cuisine, take a seat at FuLuShou: Chef Wai will be glad to put together his delicacies right in front of you.
5-6 Leicester Square, London WC2H 7NA, UK
+44 20 3642 8597
BADEN-BADEN CASINO – GERMANY
Built in 1748 with the design of a French palace, it’s no surprise that Marlene Dietrich once defined the Baden-Baden Casino as the “most beautiful casino in the world”. While you wander among the 100 slot machines and the 24 gaming tables, take some time to imagine XIX century royalties hanging around in these rooms, full of luxury just as today.
And if gaming is stressing you out, indulge in some relaxing moments at the nearby Caracalla Spa: a wellness temple ever since the Roman age.
Kaiserallee 1, 76530 Baden-Baden, Germany
+49 7221 30240
MONTE CARLO CASINO – MONACO
The one in Monte Carlo is maybe the ultimate casino, the name that is worldwide recognised as a synonym of the thrill of gambling and of an extremely elitist ambience.
With more than 150 years of history, this Belle Époque-style complex features numerous gaming parlours, alongside the Grand Théâtre de Monte Carlo and the headquarters of Les Ballets de Monte Carlo.
A paradise for refines entertainment where gambling reigns victorious, especially in its most high-bidding forms. Black Jack and poker are the stars here, with the company of Punto Banco in the Salon Privés. A privilege for the happy few.
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