Denmark is not even close to being the richest country in the world, yet in 2016 it was declared, for the third consecutive year, the country with the happiest citizens in the world. Mutatis mutandis, even though its casinos do not compete with the opulence that is specific to places like Vegas, we can still say that one of its casinos offers one of the most beautiful landscapes in the world and it’s declared by some as the most elegant casino in North-Eastern Europe. We’re talking about casino Marienlyst, which is part of the homonymous four star resort, including also a hotel, located in Elsinore (Helsingør in Danish), a harbor village from which you can reach the Swedish shores with a ferry boat.
What is so spectacular about this resort? The casino offers a landscape that is unique in the world, as it is built in a coastal area and the view is overlooking the Oresund (øresund) strait, which stands between it and the Swedish coast line. On top of that, visitors can also see the Kronborg castle, known in the entire world for the Hamlet tragedy, displaying an austere architecture, only its tall towers reminding of a castle.
Built in 1902, this casino is the oldest one in Denmark, and due to the influence of that period’s style, it also became known as one of the most elegant ones in North Europe. In fact, the initial construction of Marienlyst dates back in 1859, when it was used as a health center visited by princes and kings in Europe, and its importance led to a new building being constructed in 1902 – the hotel we know today – in order to accept a higher number of guests. Altogether, with the permission of the prince of Denmark at that time, to become King Frederick VIII, a casino started to operate in the building, with cash bets and awards. The casino used as a logo the symbol of the royal crown.
The influence of the Scandinavian style: favoring education & step-by-step
A truly special thing about this casino is the fact that it caters for all categories of clients, and moreover it encourages their way towards professionalism. The seminars offered for those barely initiated in the casino secrets stand for this: players can test the games before taking the adventure of playing against the house. In this way, they can be trained in Roulette and Blackjack during some educational seminars which show that the Scandinavian style is visible even in the casino world: education above all. These seminars are offered outside the normal casino schedule.
The casino has a varied games offer, including American Roulette, Blackjack, Punto Banco, 7-card Stud, Omaha, Texas Hold’em, but also gaming machines – over 60 of them can be found in the Jackpot Club. According to the Danish law, all gaming machines must pay back a minimum of 80% of the winnings to players, but at Casino Marienlyst the return rate is 93%, the biggest in the country and even greater compared to the machines operated by the national lottery. On top of that, those who are fond of Texas Hold’em will be thrilled to know that each Saturday and Sunday, starting from 7.30 PM, poker cash tours are organized. Those interested in the Jackpot need to know that for a minimum bet of 10 cents (DKK 1) can win a Jackpot of almost 300.000 euros (the equivalent of DKK 2,000,000) – this being the starting amount.
Even though many players can be quite skeptical given the different terminology, this casino stands to its international standards and uses, mostly, international expressions that are part of the casinos jargon. Before each game, there is a display showing the instructions for the terminology being used, under the banner of „Player’s Guide”.
There is one thing that already became a tradition at Marienlyst: inspections are run regularly, and this offers an increased degree of safety for clients. All table games, cards, chips and roulette reels are checked by its own inspection teams as well as by public authorities.
The minimum age for access is 18 and as dress code is concerned, the rules are relatively lax, even though a style that is beyond casual can make guests feel uncomfortable, that is why the management asks the guests to be presentable. After the attractions that we mentioned at the beginning, you must be convinced that at least one night booked at the hotel is imperative – the hotel has 222 rooms, from single ones to 240 square meters suites, with a view towards the resort’s garden or the strain that stands between Denmark and Sweden.
Other useful information for guests: an entrance tax is imposed, smoking is forbidden and the access with electronic devices, including phones, is not allowed.
Even if one can be amazed by the elegance, the historical print of this casino and the offer of games and prizes, the Marienlyst Casino is also a small replica of the Scandinavian lifestyle, which promotes a rules-based life, even if apparently a relaxed attitude prevails, but also a strict adherence to the social contract between those who offer entertainment and those who consume it: quality if only offered in exchange for respect showed towards high standards.