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Baha Mar Casino – a kaleidoscope of Caribbean culture and entertainment

-Oana Mihalache

For old figures in the gambling industry, casinos in exotic locations are real oasis for relaxation and escapism! Surrounded by beaches, with views towards the sea or the ocean, in an impressionistic mixture of green and blue, but also with many facilities meant to amplify the magic place – these are the coordinates of the famous casino Baha Mar Casino, in Bahamas. Live entertainment, games to suit all tastes and income levels, but also a range of facilities that offer clients an unforgettable experience, all mixed with the adrenaline of winning.

The casino is now described as the most prestigious place dedicated to gambling in Nassau, which is the capital city of Bahamas. On the casino’s official website, a part of the description awakens the curiosity: the nightlife experience there is described as a kaleidoscope of culture and entertainment”. As the biggest casino in the Caribbean, Baha Mar Casino stands up to its reputation: it covers over 30.000 square meters and offers slot machines, table games, and the gambling experience is amplified by the magnificent view towards the ocean and windows from the floor to the ceiling. The gambling experience at Baha Mar Casino can be best described in the following way: 1.140 slot machines with games like Stepper, Video Reels, Wheel of Fortune, Electronic Table Games and Poker; 119 table games with 4 varieties of Blackjack, Single and Double Zero Roulette, electronic table games, but also  poker; a High Limit gaming salon with 22 table games, but also 4 private gaming salons – with games like Blackjack, Midi Baccarat and Single Zero Roulette. On top of that, at the gaming tables players can also have acces to 8 types of proprietary games, such as: Blackjack Switch, Free Bet Blackjack, Casino War, Pai Gow Poker, 3 Card Poker, Let it Ride Poker, Ultimate Texas Hold’em Poker and Caribbean Stud Poker.

The casino was opened in April 2017 and is now opened daily from 10 a.m. to 4 a.m., a timetable during which players can not only enjoy an unique gaming experience, but also rejoice the advantages of a luxurious resort. Before describing these facilities, the first and foremost bonus of this resort are its 1.800 rooms – spacious, made for long relaxing sessions, offering views towards the ocean and surrounding islands. Also, even though gaming nights can be exhausting – due to the desire to have fun and to boost the adrenaline, during the day guests can relax at a Jack Nicklaus signature golf course, a golf American player considered to be one of the best in the world. For those who love to play tennis, the resort also includes a tennis field – called Racquet Club. For those who would rather relax in a passive manner, one of the six pools awaits them, which are surrounded by smooth sand and where they can enjoy all the spoils they can think of – cocktails, tents under which they can stay under shadow, delicious meals and not only. Those who visit this resort will be treated like stars or even like royalty – in the parking lot there is a personal valet waiting for the guests, who also have access to a fitness center, fitness, can choose between Asian, Chinese, British or Bahamas cuisine.

The resort if right in the middle of a very attractive area, thus visitors cannot afford to miss seeing places like the Pirates Museum in Nassau, Pompey Museum, the private Blue Lagoon Beach – in case they were lucky at the gaming table to afford such a spoil – but they can neither miss adventures like a Kayaking session, a visit at the Tropical Gardens, the Clifton Heritage Park or dicing among the marine species that can be seen in the Atlantic waters.

Investments in the resort reached $3.5 billion – an investment project which proved to be an ambitious one for what was projected to be the main attraction in the Bahamas islands. This resort is about to become even more popular than the famous Atlantic Casino Resort, the most popular one in the Bahamas and the Caribbean, at least until this year. The resort was built with financing from the Chinese government, which at the moment has many other ongoing investment projects in the Bahamas, including a redevelopment plan of downtown Nassau. This help came following the initiative on the part of the Bahamas authorities – who claimed that the resort would contribute by more than 10% to the GDP and bring 7.000 new jobs on the island. Basically, the resort is now owned by Chow Tai Fook Enterprises – based in Hong Kong, and the mortgage is held by the Chinese state through the national bank Export-Import Bank and by China State Construction Engineering.

Initially the project was started by a consortium formed by Sarkis Izmirlian, in partnership with Caesars Entertainment, former CEO of Las Vegas Sands and other investors – but they did not manage to finish the ambitious construction. The project was initially launched under the banner “Las Vegas on the Beach”, but because of repeated delays, other resorts soon took over the market. The main competitors of Baha Mar are Atlantic Casino, but also other attractions on the US east coast and across Florida. Due to this reason, Chow Tai Fook could attempt a marketing trick and tempt Chinese players on this side of the Caribbean. Until then, the potential of this resort can only go up, and the Chinese investments in this area are for sure on our radar – next to other projects “to be followed”.

Grand West, Cape Town

The Grand West Casino is part of Sun International Resorts and is truly a top notch destination for gamblers in search of luck and fun.

Tables

In exquisite grandeur, players can place their bets on the spin of the wheel or the turn of a card, showcase their skill and participate in tournaments. With a total of 76 gaming tables in GrandWest’s Smoking and Non-Smoking Casinos guests are invited to the most thrilling entertainment experience in South Africa’s Western Cape.

With 76 gaming tables – including Blackjack, Rais’em Poker, Easy Poker, Stud Poker,  Blackjack Switch, Blackjack Perfect Pairs, Diamond Rush, American Roulette, Punto Banco & Midi Punto Banco, GrandWest offers you the grandest in gaming entertainment.

Slots

Walk through GrandWest’s golden revolving doors and cross the threshold into a realm of unlimited possibility, sparkling with splendour! Bright lights, luxurious finishes and the carnival sound of opportunity add to a riveting experience that rouses the senses and thrills the spirit – every time. A grand total of 2524 slot machines makes GrandWest Casino the largest in South Africa and a whirlwind of wide-eyed, Las Vegas-style entertainment – 24 hours a day!

Popular games to play at GrandWest include Hollywood Slots (include exciting games like Star Wars, Wheel Of Fortune, Indiana Jones and Progressive Reel slots games), Sun Pot (Minimum mystery payouts of 50% to 100% of the Mystery Pot), Poker Magic (This game is linked to other Sun International Casinos) or Top Gun.

First Time Players

Perfect for first time players, the Gaming Information Centre is fitted with 12 slot machines, a Blackjack table and American Roulette table. The aim of the Centre is to provide the novice gambler with sufficient knowledge to make his debut on the gaming floor with more confidence and better knowledge. Trained staff are on hand to help explain the benefits of our MVG card.

The District Restaurant

Replicating the unique vibe of Cape Town’s Old District Six with buildings inspired by those found on the original streets, The District lies at the heart of GrandWest’s dazzling nightlife – offering a banquet of culinary delights from an impressive selection of Cape Town’s finest restaurants, along with an infectious mix of local and international music. In the quaint, starlit streets of The District, Grand West invites you to step into The Mother City’s past and celebrate her present with the very best Cape Town has to offer both in fine feasting and fabulous entertainment.

Also, at the heart of the District is Jackson Hall; offering a memorable dining experience in a smooth jazzy environment. Relax in soft leather couches and let the silky jazz notes transport you to days gone by. So if you want to be entertained while enjoying delicious food or just end off the day sipping a bourbon, find your way to the District. Jackson Hall – the home of the true jazz connoisseur.

The Hotel

A recreation of the historic establishment that used to grace the main street of Cape Town a long time ago, GrandWest’s 4-star Grand Hotel is the epitome of style, grace and grandeur – and provides everything you would expect a Sun International resort to be. The elegantly styled hotel boasts one Presidential suite and 38 deluxe rooms offering the ultimate in luxurious comfort. Rooms are furnished with double beds and marble finished en-suite bathrooms, each with a scenic view of the breathtaking Cape.