Manchester is one of the best-known cities in the north of England, coming second only to Liverpool depending on who you ask. A sprawling metropolis that almost rivals London in terms of what it can offer visitors, it’s no surprise that more than a few casinos are on that list.
The key thing when it comes to how many casinos there are is what you’re classing as being ‘Manchester’. For the benefit of this page we’d probably more accurately refer to it is ‘Greater Manchester’, giving that we’re looking at the likes of Salford and Bury to find our casinos.
Manchester City Center Casinos
Manchester 235 – City Centre
Located within the Great Northern Warehouse, which has a fascinating history all of its own, is the Manchester 235 casino. It’s close to both Deansgate and Manchester Oxford Road train stations, so it’s little wonder that it’s also one of the most popular casinos in the city. Open 24-7, it has a decent variety of games on offer.
That variety includes twelve different roulette tables, though there is an electronic alternative if you prefer not to talk to people. With three-card poker, blackjack and punto banco on offer, Manchester 235 has enough to please most casino attendees. There are also loads of electronic gaming machines, so slot lovers will also be delighted.
There are twelve tables in the casino’s poker room, with tournaments held regularly there and serviced by professional dealers. If you need a break from your gaming then the James Martin restaurant is extremely popular thanks to the culinary expertise of the celebrity chef. There’s also more than one bar, one of which shows live sport if that’s your thing.
Genting Casino – Portland Street
It’s a good job that Manchester 235 exists if you’re not a fan of chain casinos, given that the other five within the Manchester area are all either from the Genting brand or the Grosvenor one. The first is the Genting Casino on Portland Street and promises a decent-sized gaming floor with a nice variety of games for people of all abilities.
Whether you’re a fan of baccarat, three-card poker or blackjack, you’ll be kept entertained here. There’s also both real life roulette and the electronic equivalent. If you’re a lover of electronic games then there are plenty of slot machines here, which is why free-to-enter slot tournaments are hosted on a regular basis.
All of the best casinos have a decent poker room and the Genting is no exception. Cash games are on offer every week, as are high stakes games on request. If you like your food and drink then the bar and restaurant are both fine without being particularly thrilling. You can get snacks from the bar if the restaurant’s closed.
Grosvenor Casino Soames – George Street
Head to Manchester’s Chinatown and you’ll see the Grosvenor Casino. It’s central location means that it’s a popular venue for bettors, even though it’s not as large as some of the others in the city. That means that there’s no space for a poker room, for example, so the only poker that you’ll be able to play is either electronic or of the three-card variety.
The rest of the gaming floor is made up of live tables and slot machines, so there’s still plenty to keep visitors busy. If you like more random games, such as pai gow or baccarat, then you might well need to turn to the electronic machines to keep yourself busy. Grosvenor casinos always offer a good restaurant and bar and this one is no exception.
Greater Manchester Casinos
Genting Casino – Salford
The other Genting is located a little way outside of Manchester City centre in the area of Salford. There are good public transport options to get you here as well as a large car park if you want to drive. It’s not the largest casino in the city’s boundaries, but it’s large enough to ensure that all of the usual table games are available whenever it’s open.
Thirty-eight electronic machines offer a mix of electronic roulette and slots, whilst the main gaming floor also plays host to poker tournaments. Fahrenheit Grill is the restaurant, should you get a bit peckish, whilst there’s also a bar that promises a ‘graze and play’ menu as well large TV screens for the showing of live sporting events.
Grosvenor Casino – Bury
Bury is one of the venues that comes into the wider ‘Greater Manchester’ bracket, so you can decide for yourself whether it should technically class as being in the Manchester section. It’s worth mentioning if for no other reason than it’s where poker lovers should head given the central Grosvenor Casino doesn’t have a poker room.
This one very much does, offering two hundred and forty seats in a room that is separate from the rest of the gaming floor. Regular competitions and tournaments are offered, so there’s often a chance to win a good chunk of money if you know what you’re doing. That doesn’t mean that standard table games aren’t also offered, of course.
The selection might not be the widest in the country, but fans of roulette, blackjack and the rather easier three-card poker will all be pleased enough. It’s fair to say that the slots and electronic machines rule the roost here, though. There’s also a couple of spots to get food and drink if you want to give yourself a break from gambling.
Grosvenor Casino – Didsbury
Didsbury is another place that lodges itself onto the ‘Greater Manchester’ scene, with the Grosvenor Casino here probably being the biggest of the three. It’s actually located within the Parrs Wood Entertainment Centre, meaning that you can pop here after you’ve been to the cinema or for a game of bowling.
When it comes to what’s on offer on the gambling floor, it’s the usual mix of live table games and electronic alternatives. The slots are popular, but there’s also plenty of roulette tables and spaces to get involved with some three-card poker or some blackjack. If you prefer electronic roulette then there are thirty terminals at the time of writing.
If you fancy something a little bit more challenging on the poker front than the three-card poker options then the one hundred seat poker room should be good enough. It regularly hosts tournaments and cash games. Between them you might want to head to The Gallery, the on-site restaurant, or to the bar to have a drink or watch some live sport.
The Casino That Never Was
When the gambling laws were relaxed after the introduction of the new Gambling Act back in 2005, one of the main things discussed was the potential creation of a few so-called super casinos around the country. Manchester had made a big to be the home of one such super casino and had won the bid.
The dream was to create something that would rival the casinos of Atlantic City and Las Vegas, but there was too much disagreement amongst politicians about how these super casinos would take shape. There was also plenty of objection from social and religious groups, fearing that the expansion of the gambling world would cause major problems.
For that reason, Manchester’s super casino was eventually scrapped. This was in spite of the fact that the new venue would have created thousands of jobs for the region and seen money flood in as a result of the tourism. It was a decision taken by Gordon Brown after he took over from Tony Blair as Prime Minister, with his predecessor referring to it as ‘the worst kind of puritanism‘.