Casino Estoril: The Most Underrated Casino in Europe

Casino Estoril

While the Casino Estoril might not be the most well known in the world, it is actually one of the largest casinos in Europe, with a reputation that improves year on year. What’s more, it is widely believed to have been the inspiration for Ian Fleming’s Casino Royale – yes, the James Bond book/movie.

Just outside of Lisbon, the Estoril sits in true Portuguese prominence, easily identifiable on the horizon, pulling off the trick of appearing inviting and intimidating at the same time.

Boasting in excess of a thousand slots and table games, the Casino Estoril attracts Europe’s elite on the same scale that Monte Carlo attracts the rich and famous for the Formula 1 Grand Prix; their casino circuit almost being a by-product of the main event.

Lisbon is home to some of the most exquisite scenery in this pocket of the world, and with the globally renowned golfing region of the Algarve not too far away, a trip to the Casino Estoril could see you drawing more than one kind of clubs.

With what can only be described as opulence to rival even its glitziest European counterparts, it is easy to feel like a king playing poker here in one of their exclusive poker rooms, or trying your hand at one of their numerous table games.


concertThe Estoril is more than just a casino though, it is effectively Portugal’s premier entertainment centre with shows to rival even the likes of Las Vegas and seating for 1000 guests. A separate auditorium which hosts some of the finest jazz, theatre, classical music and concerts seats a further 350 people.

A particular highlight is the art gallery which features a sculpture display and some of the finest paintings in Europe, fit for a palace.

Adding these sorts of attractions is a clever move from the casino. It allows their customers to combine some cultural sightseeing with a fun time at a spectacular casino, increasing the sense of luxury and sophistication and attracting many more customers.

Another thing that stands out is the colour coded casino floor, which appears to have been deliberately coordinated to make it easier on the eye. It is almost as if the right colours lead you from the walls along the floors to a slot machine, or a table game. This, in all honesty, could rival the art gallery for its’ beauty. Visitors will find that the casino room is wonderful to look at and even the croupiers appear to colour coordinate.

To cap it all off, Casino Estoril is set in its own grounds which are beautifully maintained, offering arguably one of the best views of any competing casino. Spectacular vistas of lakes and gardens await.

Eating and Drinking

fine diningThe professionalism at the Estoril is immediately striking. It may not be located in one of the more famous casino locations, but the Casino Estoril knows how to maintain high standards from all members of staff from the top of the chain to the bottom, and they do themselves proud.

Their dining choices are well thought out too, with the establishment being home to what is widely agreed to be one of the best Chinese restaurants in Europe. This is a very smart move, as some of the biggest gamblers in the world are Chinese; the province of Macau is evidence of this, regularly attracting numerous Chinese high rollers from across the border.

A combination of the finest Chinese cuisine and some of the most impressive hospitality on the planet, something which the Chinese take very seriously, make the Estoril an ideal location for high rolling Chinese nationals. The gallery is the icing on the cake, with art also being prominent in Chinese culture.

Being in Portugal, there is of course a traditional Portuguese restaurant too, with one of the most noted chefs in the country running the kitchen. This variation is another clever move from Estoril’s chiefs. Gamblers like a taste of the high life, and having a great choice of restaurants enhances their experience and keeps them playing at the casino for longer.

What Does the Future Hold for the Casino Estoril?

monte estorilWhile it is already an impressively popular venue, the Estoril certainly has a lot of potential to grow and appeal to even more people. It certainly wouldn’t struggle to attract investment.

If marketed effectively, there is no reason why it could become a destination mentioned in the same breath as Vegas or Monte Carlo, especially with it being so close to Lisbon.

The option of adding a hotel so that customers do not have to travel 18 kilometres from the county’s capital city is one idea that has surely been considered; the infrastructure is already there and this would make the casino a fully rounded holiday destination rather than a place on the list to visit.

Whatever happens, the Estoril is in no danger of dying off, and will continue to attract gamblers with deep pockets thanks to the quality service they will receive. That means plenty of profit for the casino, which can only see them go from strength to strength.

Other Big European Casinos

While the Estoril is the most underrated European casino, there are a good number of others that are worth knowing about yet don't seem to grab the headlines in the same way as the famous place. Have a look at these other fantastic gambling destinations:

Clermont Club London, England Recently Re-opened. Members Only. Offers an Exclusive Luxury Experience.
Casino de Venezia Venice, Italy Oldest in the World. Ex Royal Residence. Fine Dining.
Salzburg Casino Salzburg, Austria A Genuine Baroque Palace. International Games. Once Used by Hitler.
Resorts World Birmingham, England Huge Entertainment Complex. Thoroughly Modern Casino. Offers 'Learn to Play' sessions.
Casino Baden-Baden Baden Baden, Germany 200 Year Pedigree. Ornately Decorated. Offers Guided Tours.