Frequently referred to as the “Monte Carlo of the Orient”, Macau (or Macao) has become the most successful gaming destination in the world, having overtaken even Las Vegas in terms of revenue. The former Portuguese colony relies heavily on gambling. Interestingly, Macau also has one of the longest life expectancies in the world, so taking a risk can't be that bad for you!
Naturally, as its major industry, gambling in Macau is highly developed, and the area has everything a gaming enthusiast could possibly wish for. Casino games here range from traditional games like Fan-Tan to newer trends like Texas Hold ‘Em.
One of the most famous casinos in Macau is the Casino Lisboa; the original Stanley Ho hotel and casino. The complex has been extended numerous times since it was built in 1970, and now includes the Grand Lisboa. As well as its fully equipped casino, the hotel also boasts 6 restaurants, as well as its very own nightclub. The Grand Lisboa is shaped like a lotus flower and is connected to the original building via a footbridge.
Another Macau casino that has to be seen to be believed is the Galaxy Macau. This hotel and casino is located in Cotai and has 5 outdoor swimming pools and its own private beach.
These are just 2 of over 30 casinos scattered around Macau, all with their own character and fantastic amenities. The area is also popular for horse and greyhound racing enthusiasts, with the Macau Jockey Club and Canidrome drawing tourists in their thousands. It's not hard to see why Macau is so popular for a flutter; it's a place that's got it all in terms of facilities, and it definitely does it all in style!
Hot on the heels of Macau’s title as the world’s top casino destination is Singapore; a country set to pip Vegas to second place. Though the country only has two casinos, the sheer scale of each is impressive; at least they certainly seem to have impressed the punters, who have embraced Singapore as the new gaming destination of choice.
The stunning edifice of the Marina Bay Sands Resort lights up the sky above the streets of Singapore. The SkyPark sky terrace runs along the top of the complex's three towers and includes a stunning infinity pool, numerous restaurants, gardens and nightclubs perched high over the city, with a 360-degree view of Singapore’s skyline. The complex contains innumerable designer boutiques and several celebrity restaurants, as well as the world’s largest atrium casino. And if that’s not impressive enough for you, the resort boasts the largest light and water show in South-East Asia, an ice rink, and even a canal running through its boutiques, where guests can float through The Shoppes at their leisure on a traditional sampan.
The other casino in Singapore is the Resorts World Sentosa on the island of Sentosa. This integrated resort includes numerous hotels and restaurants, and was one of the most expensive constructions of its kind (almost as pricey as the Marina Bay Sands Resort, and that's saying something!). As well as its huge casino, the resort has a Universal Studios theme park (the first in Asia), boasts one of Asia’s largest sweet shops; Candylicious, and is set to open Equarius, a water park in late 2011, as well as a Marine Life Park in 2012, which will house the world's largest oceanarium.
Another great Asian casino hotspot; South Korea has plenty to offer the discerning risk-taker. South Korea is unusual in that its own citizens are forbidden from using the country's casinos (all apart from one, that is). Yet there are plenty of betting hubs in South Korea for the use of foreign nationals. The majority of these are contained around Seoul and the island of Jeju-do (or Cheju). One such offering is the Paradise Casino Walker Hill in Seoul. This is the largest casino in Korea, with great modern facilities and intriguing “gift events” where the casino shows its appreciation of its guests’ custom. This branch of Paradise Casino overlooks the Han River and has been consistently popular with tourists since the sixties. If the city isn’t for you, the island of Jeju-do is a haven of peace and tranquillity where visitors can soak in their natural surroundings one minute and take their chances in one of the island's 8 casinos the next. Or if you prefer to mingle with the locals, try the Kangwon Casino; the only casino South Korean citizens are permitted to use. Located a short distance outside Seoul, this is your only chance to go up against the natives.
An intriguing location to gamble, as there is only one casino. In actual fact, the Genting Highlands just outside Kuala Lumpur is the only legal, land-based casino in all of Malaysia! But what a place it is! Another Resorts World development, the casino is part of a hilltop complex which can only be reached by car or cable car. As well as its numerous event centres, hotels and restaurants, the Genting Highlands complex is also home to Malaysia’s biggest theme park. If you’re going to gamble in Malaysia, this really is the only place to do it!