The state of New York, historically, has frowned upon casinos. It isn’t surprising then that there are very few casinos within the city.
One casino that was of distinction though was the Renaissance Ballroom & Casino. But even after a petition, The Renny wasn’t saved. There are, however, many good casinos around the state. The best of them are these four:
Turning Stone Resort & Casino
Turning Stone opened in 1993 and was the first legal casino in New York. It is also arguably the finest in the state. Reviews of the casino-resort on U.S. News Travel are glowing, with Turning Stone often compared to some of Las Vegas’ very best establishments. It has a full range of amenities, and a great variety of games.
Turning Stone also has a thriving poker room that hosts some of the best poker tournaments and live poker in this part of the country. This is testament to how New York has become one of the top places to play poker in the U.S.
These poker rooms owe their popularity to the poker boom of the early 2000s. This increased interest in the game was led by cult films like Rounders, a film inspired by New York’s high-stakes underground poker scene. Rounders helped push poker from hidden backrooms to being the top draw at casinos. Unlike the early 2000s though, today’s players can now test their skills online first, before venturing out and playing competitively. partypoker’s guide to online tournaments shows the wide variety of ways players can experience the digital version of the game. These range from short stack games (where players are against the clock) to a single-table online tournament (similar to a regular poker tournament). While these online tournaments may not entirely approximate the experience of playing in top poker rooms, like in the Turning Stone, they are the perfect way to build confidence. But for those looking for a serious game, Turning Stone’s poker room is the place to be.
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Seneca Allegany certainly gives Turning Stone a run for its money. It is that good of a casino-resort. Seneca Allegany, operated by the Seneca Nation of Indians, is arguably the most luxurious casino in the state. Its seven consecutive AAA Four Diamond awards confirm that. Its awards include ‘Best Pool’, ‘Best Carnival Games’, ‘Best Video Poker’, ‘Best Slot Tournaments’, ‘Best Keno’, ‘Best Dealers’, and ‘Best High Limit Room’.
Resorts World Catskills
North of New York City is Resorts World Catskills, a full-gaming casino with an unmistakable Vegas vibe. It offers a wide array of table games, from the hugely popular blackjack to the little-known pai gow poker. Resorts World Catskills also features a poker room, some private gaming salons, and over 1,000 slot machines. Its food is top-notch, too. Notable in this case is Cellaio, a steakhouse run by celebrity chef Scott Conant, and Dos Gatos Cantina, a Mexican-themed restaurant.
Resorts World Casino New York City
Last but not the least is Resorts World Casino New York City. It is located at the Aqueduct in Queens. It is, in fact, the only casino in the Big Apple’s immediate boundaries. Resorts World Casino at Aqueduct was formerly a racino – a combination of a racetrack and a casino. It has since evolved into a full-fledged casino, complete with video slot machines and table games. Among the games you can play here, aside from slots, are baccarat, blackjack, roulette, three-card poker, and craps.
Photo credit: 1) The Renaissance Ballroom in Harlem, the 1920s via Wikipedia. 2) Turning Stone Resort & Casino via Pinterest. 3) Seneca Allegany via Seneca Allegany. 4) Resorts World Catskill via Facebook. 5) Resorts World Casino New York City via Facebook.