1. Welcome to VegasMessageBoard
    It appears you are visiting our community as a guest.
    In order to view full-size images, participate in discussions, vote in polls, etc, you will need to Log in or Register.

Macau / Cotai Trip Report

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Trip Reports' started by TrustNo1, Nov 3, 2019.

  1. TrustNo1

    TrustNo1 Tourist

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2019
    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    30

    My Trip Report

    Just got back from a two-day Macau trip. Third trip out there, the first being in 2009. Stayed at the JW Marriott at Galaxy Mon-Tues. Took the 1 hour ferry ride from Hong Kong. I'm primarily a Craps guy, with some BJ / Roulette in-between and make a trip out to Vegas once a month (I'm in LA). Was surprised to come across the amount of Craps tables I saw in Cotai given what I was reading online and past experiences as Macau is probably 95%+ Baccarat and Sic Bo. I didn't hit up City of Dreams since I stayed there many years ago around the time it opened.

    Also went with the GF this time as well so gambling time was more limited than usual as we spent a fair amount of time at the Galaxy Pools and went around to eat. All the dealers I came across could understand English pretty well (with the exception at L'Arc)

    Western Style Games I came across: (For reference, $100 HKD is $12.75 USD)

    Galaxy: Craps $100HKD min. I believe it was 5x odds all around. There were no fire bets, repeater bets, or make em all bets in Macau. Blackjack was $800HKD min. Dealers here were pretty friendly and well however on occasion took some time to figure out the Craps payouts and were confused half the time when I wanted to press my bets. Place had 100+ tables but probably only 20% were in use. Craps table was closed when I came back at 10AM on Tuesday.

    Plaza: Saw one craps table, but it was not in use. Most games here were pretty high limit - $500HKD for roulette and $800HKD for blackjack. Casino was really small and quiet and I left after a few spins at the roulette wheel. I came across this casino by chance on the way to the Parisian - it's hidden away in downstairs in some passageway. Also owned by Sands and had a mix of Sands Cotai and Venetian chips in play. Probably only 20 or so tables with half of them in use.

    Parisian: Craps $200HKD min. Place was gorgeous, and the dealers were pretty competent as well. Threw some dice for around 30 min. This place is also owned by Sands and they didn't seem to have their own chips - it was a mix of Sands Cotai and Venetian chips. Didn't get a chance to look at any other games. The casino floor was pretty massive but most tables were closed on Monday night.

    MGM Cotai: Craps $200HKD min. The craps table here was one of the strangest and worst I've played on. There was some weird padding under the felt that made the dice bounce in ridiculous ways, almost like you were throwing dice on a trampoline. I left after 15 min - table was cold. BJ was $800 HKD.

    Himalaya Gaming: I had read that this casino had craps and the limits were low, but I walked through and no Craps. There was a blackjack table going on for $400HKD, other than that the place was packed full of Sic Bo and Baccarat tables. Casino floor itself was pretty generic with nothing spectacular to note, however I'd say this casino seemed to have the most tables in play on a Monday night, more than Parisian, MGM or Studio City.

    Studio City: Craps $100 HKD min. Dealers here were probably the most experienced at Craps I came across at Cotai. Unfortunately there was an obnoxious spectator who did not understand Craps etiquette and kept yelling "was that a seven!?" after every roll so I left after 20 min.

    L'arc: Came here looking for a Craps table on the way to the ferry station since it was mentioned online however it was all Asian games at this time. Place probably lost a lot of business to the new Cotai casinos. Ended up playing some Sic-Bo .. limits were $100HKD.

    Food: GF took me to this "old" section of Cotai which was filled with restaurants and souvenir shops.. about a 20 minute walk from Galaxy. Had some pretty good Portuguese/Macau food and came back to this area the next day for breakfast too. Had lunch at "The 8 Restaurant" at the Grand Lisboa - probably the cheapest 3 start Michelin meal you can possibly get. Came out to only $100 for two, however we weren't super hungry so we just ordered some smaller dishes.

    Pics Attached

    Note: I think taking pictures inside the Casinos in Macau is "frowned upon" so I only got a few shots. Security here is more uptight than Vegas and you have to go threw a metal detector every time and they look in our bag. There are also a ton of suits walking around. I tried to add pics as thumbnail but keep getting an error thinking it's spam so the attachments will have to do for now..
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Nov 3, 2019
    • Like Like x 8
    • Love Love x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
  2. Cheetos

    Cheetos Low-Roller

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2016
    Messages:
    113
    Location:
    Thailand
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    20
    Galaxy casino is one of the best!
     
  3. VegasFirstTimer

    VegasFirstTimer Low-Roller

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2017
    Messages:
    386
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    0
    Question. How did you get local money and how did you covert it back to USD?
     
  4. VegasFirstTimer

    VegasFirstTimer Low-Roller

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2017
    Messages:
    386
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    0
    Planning on visiting would love pointers. Like what Part of Hong Kong did you stay at and was it close to ferry as ferry is the only means of getting to Macau.
     
  5. TrustNo1

    TrustNo1 Tourist

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2019
    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    30
    I stayed in Tsim Sha Tsui on the Kowloon side and took the Cotai express ferry from the ferry terminal which is on the Hong Kong island side. The subway system here is very convienent and in English so you will have no problem getting around. I just take out money with my normal ATM card at the banks here, but every major bank, hotel and even the Casino cages will convert your USD to HKD and vise versa.

    There is a regular scheduled helicopter option to Macau now too, its only 15 min vs 1 hour. I think its around $500 per person.
     
  6. Init2winit

    Init2winit Low-Roller

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2019
    Messages:
    239
    Location:
    Westeros
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    10
    Did you end up redeeming any of the myvegas rewards?
     
  7. DaiLun

    DaiLun R.C., L.C., and A.A.N.G.

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2014
    Messages:
    7,777
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    90
    I had a problem redeeming them last time, but I will be trying again in a month. I have a three night stay at MGM Cotai with $200 USD in food spend, tickets to the House of Dancing Waters, and 2 buffets at the 360 degree buffet at Macao Tower. These were all "custom" awards.
     
    Second HGS Event at Bellagio, but I'm slumming by staying at Excalibur
    Bangkok, Resort World Genting, and MGM Cotai
  8. DaiLun

    DaiLun R.C., L.C., and A.A.N.G.

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2014
    Messages:
    7,777
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    90
    There are money changers in both Hong Kong and Macao. I'm not like my BFF, who has to squeeze every last decimal point out of the exchange, so I'm pretty loose. The casinos in Macao will also exchange money.

    If you're going to change money "on the street" it's $100 US bills ONLY.

    On the outbound side (coming back), I exchanged at the airport and got a pretty good rate. My TR from earlier this year has all the details.

    https://www.vegasmessageboard.com/forums/index.php?threads/malaysia-macau-and-las-vegas-4-15-4-25-2019.161210/

    but, if you don't want to read my TR, here is the excerpt of the money exchange:

    "The Plaza premium lounge had a lesser choice of food and drink, but it had more comfortable seating than the regular terminal, and had free food and drink. At 3:30PM, I left the lounge and went downstairs to exchange 9000 HKD that I had left from the day before. I got a rate of $366 USD for $3000 HKD, as opposed to the ""official" exchange rate of $382, and I figure that it was the best I could do, or, better than I could do in Las Vegas, so I took the cash and went upstairs to the American Express Centurion lounge."
     
    Second HGS Event at Bellagio, but I'm slumming by staying at Excalibur
    Bangkok, Resort World Genting, and MGM Cotai
  9. DaiLun

    DaiLun R.C., L.C., and A.A.N.G.

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2014
    Messages:
    7,777
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    90
    I'm glad that OP found a few more crap tables in Macau. I know that craps is not a popular game in Asia (Asians don't like "touching" the dice).
     
    Second HGS Event at Bellagio, but I'm slumming by staying at Excalibur
    Bangkok, Resort World Genting, and MGM Cotai
  10. gutshotSF

    gutshotSF Royal chaser and real-life long-distance runner

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2019
    Messages:
    113
    Location:
    Beijing, China
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    2
    I am curious about the "800 HKD" minimums on blackjack tables. In 5+ years of going to Macau at least once a quarter, I have never seen an 800 HKD table. Most of the tables at the big casinos in cotai are 500HKD, with a CSM in use. There are a few 300 HKD tables throughout some of the properties. Are you sure this info is correct? In any event, thanks for a great report!
     
    Four Queens in December!
  11. makikiboy

    makikiboy VIP Whale

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Messages:
    5,979
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    35
    Maybe some dealers from vegas should consider moving to Macau and help teach them how to run a crap table.

    So, looks like the crap tables are generally (approx.) $12 to $25 per bet. Wow, $800 hkd for some bj tables? Sounds like they are generally black chip tables then.

    Oh well, looks like I will just be browsing if I ever get to Macau. I have a hard time playing on $10 tables in vegas, no way will I play green chip or black chip minimum tables. Too rich for my tastes.

    Thanks for the info though. Doubt they have rooms for less than $100 US so not likely I will stay in the area.
     
  12. DaiLun

    DaiLun R.C., L.C., and A.A.N.G.

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2014
    Messages:
    7,777
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    90
    Asians (from Asia) in general (and I can only speak to Chinese) DO NOT LIKE TOUCHING THE DICE!!!! This is one of the reasons that Craps will NEVER be popular in Macau. Asians (from Asia) also tend to prefer "even money" games and that is why Baccarat is so popular.

    Walk into Venetian Macau and observe the "sea" of Baccarat tables (I'll post a picture in a few weeks so you can have an idea) Putting in a crap table just to satisfy what few American tourists is a "waste" of floor space, the same reason that there are NO Video Poker machines in Macau (99.99% sure) or RW Genting (Malaysia) 100% sure.

    I've also talked to Senior Gaming executives in Macau, and one of the reasons for the high profitability there is the low labor costs. It take a minimum of three dealers on a craps table. That's 3x the labor cost.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2019
    Second HGS Event at Bellagio, but I'm slumming by staying at Excalibur
    Bangkok, Resort World Genting, and MGM Cotai
    • Informative Informative x 1
  13. Init2winit

    Init2winit Low-Roller

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2019
    Messages:
    239
    Location:
    Westeros
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    10
    Disagree about the dice comment. Queue God of Gamblers hk movie.
     
  14. tringlomane

    tringlomane STP Addicted Beer Snob

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Messages:
    20,041
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    22
    Nice report and pics!
     
  15. DaiLun

    DaiLun R.C., L.C., and A.A.N.G.

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2014
    Messages:
    7,777
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    Trips to Las Vegas:
    90
    Next month in Macau I am having lunch with a SR. VP of Melco Resorts & Entertainment (one of the larger casino operators in Asia). I will bring it up with him and see what he says.
     
    Second HGS Event at Bellagio, but I'm slumming by staying at Excalibur
    Bangkok, Resort World Genting, and MGM Cotai
    • Like Like x 1