Our Top Land-Based Casinos in CanadaIt’s an undisputed fact that Canadians love to gamble! Between 60–75% of Canadians (depending on which market research source one consults) enjoy a ‘little flutter’ occasionally or on a regular basis.
Before the advent of online casinos, bricks-and-mortar establishments were the only option available. Those who were fortunate enough to live close by, or were prepared to travel long distances, were able to enjoy the thrill of numerous colorful, jangling slot machines, the allure of the roulette wheel or the quiet tension of the poker or baccarat table.
Canada has about 100 land-based casinos, most of which remain thriving businesses. For some, nothing beats the exciting atmosphere of hundreds of slot machines all going at the same time, or the crowds around the blackjack tables. However, many casinos are currently closed due to Covid-19 restrictions for the time being – a disadvantage that online casinos never have to worry about.
The rise in popularity of online gaming means that anyone has easy and safe access 24 hours a day. They can gamble in the comfort of their own home, or on the go, thanks to mobile platforms. Online casinos also offer higher returns to players, with a lower house edge than most land-based casinos. Another advantage is that their favorite slots or table games are always available to play.
However, land-based casinos still have their place, as they offer a full day’s or night’s entertainment, including bars and restaurants, with some offering hotel accommodation and other luxury services for those who can afford them. Because of differing regulations in provinces, there are unfortunately no casinos in New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, and Labrador. The most popular casinos can be found in Quebec, Alberta, and Ontario, with a number of great casinos based in BC as well.
Below we review just a few of Canada’s top gambling establishments.
Casino de Montréal
This casino, which opened in 1993, is situated on Notre Dame island and is Canada’s largest casino. The gaming areas span 12 acres, housing over 3,200 slot machines, 115 gaming tables and facilities for keno and other games. It has four restaurants, three bars and a cabaret venue, and is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Overlooking the majestic Niagara Falls, this casino is situated in one of the most scenic locations in Canada. It has an impressive number of slot machines – over 1,300 – and 30 gaming tables. A dedicated poker room for high rollers is available, as are sports betting facilities. Live sports games are shown on large screens, so punters can keep up with all the action. Patrons can also enjoy regular live entertainment and dine in a choice of four excellent hotel restaurants.
Casino Rama Resort
Casino Rama Resort is a First Nations resort casino and the only one of its kind in Ontario. It boasts an impressive offering of 110 table games, 60 gaming tables and over 2,200 slots. The Resort has eight restaurants to choose from and guests staying in the 287-room luxury hotel have access to a salt-water indoor pool, steam room, sauna and a fitness centre.
River Rock Casino Resort
Set on the scenic banks of the Fraser River in Richmond BC, River Rock Casino Resort claims to have the largest baccarat house in North America. With over 1,200 slots, over 100 gaming tables – including blackjack, roulette, poker and craps – River Rock offers a variety of options to suit every taste. If you need a break from gaming, visitors can choose from seven restaurants for dining, stroll along the marina boardwalk or be entertained by a concert in the Star Theatre.
Hastings Racecourse and Casino
Uniquely, Hastings Racecourse and Casino offers a mix of live horseracing and casino slots. The gaming floor features over 500 slot machines to choose from when not betting on the races. Hastings is conveniently situated four miles from downtown Vancouver. It originally opened for business in 1889, making it Vancouver’s longest continuously used sports facility.
Casino de Mont-Tremblant
Set in a picturesque town on the shores of Lake Tremblant in the Laurentian Mountains northwest of Montréal, this government-run casino provides a real get-away-from-it-all experience. Besides the gaming options of over 500 slot machines and 20 gaming tables where roulette, baccarat and other classic games can be played, the great outdoors awaits. Year-round skiing is available, as well as hiking and canoeing. For the more sedentary, one can take a gondola lift ride to the mountain top for scenic views of the area.
Caesars Windsor Hotel and Casino
Located on the Detroit River near to the Ambassador bridge that connects the US and Canada, Caesars Windsor Hotel and Casino in Ontario is a well-known landmark. Its 23-story hotel tower offers panoramic views of the city of Windsor and the Detroit skyline. The casino’s 100,000-square-foot gaming areas holds 2,500 slot machines and more than 75 gaming tables, offering all the classic games such as blackjack, poker, craps and roulette. Caesars regularly hosts world-class poker tournaments of No-Limit Texas Hold ‘Em in the 14-table poker room, with Hold ‘Em, Omaha, and Seven Card Stud also on offer.
No doubt about it, Canadians are spoilt for choice, whether they choose gambling as a great night out or staying in and enjoying their gaming entertainment at home. With over 2,000 online casinos to choose from, as well as the many superb land-based venues, it’s game on for Canadians!