The city of Manila and its adjacent cities known as Metro Manila have always been popular tourist spots. But did you know that Manila is quickly becoming a gambling hotspot? Casino gaming has become one of the Philippines’ fastest-growing industries. The introduction of the integrated resort, or mega-hotel-casino property, has helped boost tourism. Many of these integrated resorts contain entertainment venues, shopping malls, and spas. Stock prices in various Filipino casino companies skyrocketed over the summer of 2015.
The Philippines is comprised of over 7,000 islands, but the main gaming hub is Manila. The greater metropolitan area of Manila (including the airport) boasts over 20 casinos and VIP slot clubs. There are also three major billion-dollar integrated mega-resorts under construction.
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The majority of the casinos in the Philippines are operated by Casino Filipino, which is run by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR). Some of the most popular casinos in the Philippines are Casino Filipino Pavilion, City of Dreams, Solaire Resort & Casino, and Resorts World Manila. Most of them are located near Metro Manila.
POPULAR ASIAN GAMES: PAI GOW, SIC BO, PONTOON, AND SABONG CARDS
Casinos throughout the Philippines capitalized on the recent surge in poker after the boom swept into Southeast Asia. In addition to the usual casino pit games like craps, roulette, and blackjack, Filipino casinos also spread popular local favorites like Pai Gow, Pontoon, Baccarat, Sabong Cards, and Sic Bo. Pontoon is a game similar to Blackjack. Sic Bo is a dice game played with three dice instead of two. Sabong Cards is a highly popular game that is available exclusively at the Solaire Casino.
SLOT MACHINES FROM ELVIS TO GAME OF THRONES
Slot machines are extremely popular in the Philippines, and they are not just for grandmas and other retirees anymore! Slots have come a very long way. It’s not just trying to match up cherries and bells on an old-fashioned machine in which you pull the lever and watch three wheels spin. Modern slot machine software developers utilize innovative technology to produce high-resolution slots that are more like video games. The new generation of slot machines cater to the growing numbers of gamers who also enjoy gambling. At the same time, many slot machine companies are integrating new game ideas with well-established entertainment brands from popular American and British television shows, game shows, and movies. There are slot machines featuring The Godfather, 24, South Park, Mad Men, and Game of Thrones. Even individual celebrities are featured on slot machines like Elvis, Elton John and Britney Spears.
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The Pavilion is the oldest standing casino in Manila, which first opened its doors almost 30 years ago. It was formerly known as the Holiday Inn Manila Pavilion and it is now known as Casino Filipino Pavilion. The property is one of the oldest luxury hotels constructed in Manila and located on United Nations Avenue, scattered among numerous embassies. The area caters to many international dignitaries and is a popular spot in central Manila.
The Pavilion is conveniently located in Emrita, which is the heart of the business and tourist district. The actual casino is located inside the 5-star Pavilion Waterfront Hotel and spread out over three of its 22 floors.
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Solaire Resort and Casino is a 5-star property that opened its doors in 2013 in the heart of Entertainment City, which the Philippines are hoping will becoming a major international gaming hub much like Las Vegas or Macau. In fact, Solaire has a Vegas-like feel to its casino, especially with a spacious gaming floor boasting over 1,700 slot machines.
Solaire offers many Asian table games including Sic Bo and Sabong Cards. Solaire also spreads Baccarat Super Six, which is an exciting derivative of Baccarat. They also have a popular game called Blackjack Squeeze. Sabong Cards is an exciting game that you can only play at Solaire.
The Solaire compound has spectacular vistas of Rizal Park and the Grand Bay. Solaire is conveniently located next door to the SMX Convention Center, and it is in close proximity to the Cuneta Astrodome and the World Trade Center.
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CITY OF DREAMS
Also located in the heart of Entertainment City is the City of Dreams Manila, which opened its doors in early 2015. City of Dreams looking to put itself on the global gaming map with a majestic mega-resort. They have six hotel towers including the signature Crown Towers hotel along with Asia’s first Nobu Hotel, named after famous chef Nobu Matsuhisa from Japan and co-owned by actor Robert De Niro. The Fortune Egg is a ginormous dome that also houses Chaos and Pangea, a pair of nightclubs designed by renowned club owner Michael Van Cleef Ault. City of Dreams also includes a large mall and a theme park built by DreamWorks Animation.
The gaming floor at City of Dreams is tremendous with almost 1,700 slot machines and 350 gaming tables. City of Dreams has embraced the future of gaming and also spreads over 1,700 electronic table games.
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RESORTS WORLD MANILA
Resorts World Manila is located in Newport City next to Ninoy Aquino Airport. It used to be an old military base and was converted into a luxury gaming resort. Resorts World Manila is strategically located near the airport, which makes it an extremely popular destination for avid international gamblers, especially from Japan and China.
Resorts World Mania includes four major hotels (Maxims, Marriot, Remington, and Belmont). Resorts World Manila has five floors filled with shops, bars, restaurants, theatres, and other amenities. Gizadon is a popular spot for foodies. The world-renowned restaurant features a fusion of Japanese and Korean cuisine.
Resorts World Manila caters to slot machine enthusiasts. They have a VIP slots club and also run special tournaments.
Resorts World Manila even recently sponsored a stop on the Asian Golf Tour called the Resorts World Masters that featured a $1 million purse. Resorts World also has sister resorts in Singapore and Malaysia.
PHILIPPINES GAMING BIZ IS THE NEW RISING STAR
The casino industry in the Philippines is one of the fastest growing sectors in the gaming world. The Philippines are a rising star as they attempt to become major player on the international gambling scene. In an attempt to rival Las Vegas and Macau, a lot of investment has been put into building up Entertainment City, which everyone hopes will become the Philippines’ version of the Las Vegas Strip with multiple mega-casinos and resorts. Next time you are in the Philippines on holiday, take some time to visit one of the major casinos: The Pavilion, Solaire, City of Dreams, and Resorts World Manila.
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