Land-Based Casinos In Bermuda
Due to stringent anti-gambling laws, land-based casinos in Bermuda have never seen the light of day. Thankfully, this will no soon longer be the case, as three new gaming venues are looking to open their doors after the passing of an Act that effectively legalised gambling, with the exception of Poker. While cruise ships continue to offer gambling at night, local residents can now enjoy classic gambling at major casinos in Bermuda in Hamilton, Gates Bay and St. George.
Gambling on Cruise Ships
Prior to 2013, all forms of gambling were illegal in Bermuda. Even legal casinos on board cruise ships were not allowed to operate once docked at a port in Bermuda. This law was changed in 2013, and subsequently all cruise ships can now operate on-board casinos from 9pm at night, to 5am in the morning. All passengers can freely gamble with no restrictions on what games they may play. The rules enforced on board follow that of the cruise ship itself.
In 2014, the Casino Gaming Act was passed, and the Act allows for the legal operation of land-based casinos in Bermuda. The proviso is that only three establishments can operate within the country’s borders, and must be attached to a hotel. While this may seem like a harsh restriction, it is a starting point and a testing ground for times to come. It may be that in the future, the legislation is amended to allow the construction of more brick and mortar gaming venues.
In 2019, we are on the verge of seeing three casinos in Bermuda open their doors to the public. The Holland America MS Nieuw Statendam is a cruise ship that offers gambling facilities to the public. Based in St. George, the ship has a gaming floor filled with slot machines of every type.
St Regis Resort and Hamilton Princess
Two new establishments that will soon be opening their doors are the Hamilton Princess & Beach Club and the St Regis Resort in Gates Bay. Hamilton was picked to be one of the main gambling destinations for the country, so it is no surprise that the Princess & Beach Club will now house one of the best land-based casinos around. Once completed, it will offer a full list of slot machines, 3-card Poker, Blackjack, Electronic Roulette and American Roulette. The resort will naturally have a hotel attached, a 60-berth marina and a terrace bar and restaurant.
The St Regis Resort is another big project that is almost at completion. When it is up and running, the resort will have a fully operational casino, hotel, spa, function centre and golf course. It is expected to be sizable, with a dedicated racebook and sportsbook facility, as well as slots, electronic roulette and table games. You can expect to find 3-Card Poker, European Roulette, Blackjack and Stud Poker on the floor.
What to Expect at a Land-based Casino
With the imminent arrival of legal casinos in Bermuda, gamblers will be able to experience classic land-based gaming at its best. While the brick and mortar venues will not have as many games as their online counterparts, you will find a huge library of slot machines with the latest 5-reel games, as well as classic 3-reel Vegas slots. The model will follow that of European establishments where there will be a separate floor or section for table games. This is where you can relax with a drink or a snack and play a round of Roulette, or Blackjack with different tables for both high and low limit bets.
With so many developments on the horizon, the future of gambling in Bermuda looks set to be very bright.