Hotel Review+ Back
Venetian Macao

 

Cotai Strip, Macau

Tel: (853) 2882 8888
Email: inquiries@venetian.com.mo

www.venetianmacao.com

 

No. of Suites - 3000
Table Games - 601
Slot Machines - 2000

(Last updated: January 25, 2018)

 

 

For more pictures of the Venetian, please click here: Venetian Photobook

 

 

HIGHLIGHTS

Macau - and the world's - largest casino.

 

The Grand Canal Shoppes: full of gondolas and gondoliers, gorgeous storefronts and roaming performers, it's like going from Macau to Venice in 60 seconds or less.

 

The Cotai Arena, where world class entertainment lines up to perform on a regular basis.

 

Frequent rolling exhibitions and attractions, such as Ice World.

 

One star Michelin restaurant Golden Peacock, and one fantastic lunch deal at Portofino.

 

CASINO

Instead of talking about the games that the Venetian offers, I think it's a lot more easier to discuss what they don't have.  Fan Tan, Dragon Phoenix, and Banking 3 Card Baccarat are no longer available, while I don't think they ever had Pai Gow, Dragon 7 or EZ Baccarat.  Apart from that, every other table game, electronic table game, or Live Gaming machine known to Macau is at the Venetian, in addition to over 2000 slots.  Most of the minimums on the 300 tables start from $300, while slots begin at 0.02 and end at $10.  In terms of the casino's various electronic machines, no lows exceed $25 while Live Baccarat starts from $10, Live Roulette from $40 and Live Sic Bo from $50.  

 

The Venetian also offers "Fast Action Baccarat" and “Fast Action Sic Bo”, two games that have the same rules as traditional Commission Free Baccarat and Sic Bo, but which get played much faster.  With Fast Action Baccarat, players play on a huge rectangular table two or three times the size of normal tables and place their chips on a coloured area showing Banker, Player, Tie or Player Pair, Banker Pair.  The dealer deals the cards and plays the game then punches the result into the computer.  Losing wagers then disappear when the chips fall through a trap door on the table, leaving only winning wagers on top.  An attendant shuffles down the line paying out winning bets and then the whole process starts again.  It looks about as efficient as an assembly line when it's going well.  Fast Action Sic Bo plays by the same machinations, only it’s a simplified version of the normal game, with only three bets available: Big/Small, Individual number 4 through 17, and Any Triple.  

 

Venetian casino floor casino at the Venetian Macao as seen through large pillars

 

Drink service is often quite slow because there never seems to be enough staff, so getting a waitress is sometimes difficult.  There isn't much drink selection, and I don't even think free booze is served, even if you're gambling. 

 

GAMES

 

Baccarat - Insane minimum bet of $3000.  Only available in the high limit room.

Commission Free Baccarat
- Players win 50% on won 6 Banker bet.  Minimum bet is only $100.

7 Up Baccarat - 7 Up Baccarat is Macau’s newest game and can only be found at the Venetian.  The game is identical to normal Baccarat except for the following rule changes.

1. The Player’s first card is always a 7.
2. If the Banker wins on a 7, the payout is 9-5.  If the Player wins on a 7, the payout is 1-2.  Ties in the game return 7-1, instead of the customary 8-1.  If the tie is on a 7, the payout is 9-1.

According to the Wizard of Odds, the house edge on the Banker bet is 2.56%, while the Player bet is 2.60%.  That makes it a much worse game than conventional Baccarat, where the house edge for the Banker and Player are 1.06% and 1.24% respectively.  The tie bet in 7 Up Baccarat is much better however, 4.05% compared to 14.36% in Baccarat.  

There’s also a Super Sevens side bet that pays according to the amount of 7’s that appear in the hand.  The pay chart looks like this:



Since the Player’s first card is always a 7, there will always be at least one 7 in the hand.  The house edge on the Super Seven’s bet is 8.86%.

Minimum bet is $200.

Blackjack - Minimum bet is $300.

Sands Stud Poker - Normal Caribbean Stud Poker with an important side bet variation.  Instead of the side bet only being $25, it starts from $50 and players can increase it further to $100, $150, $200 or $250 if they choose.  Flush, full house and four of a kind cash bonuses are then paid out in proportion to the original side bet wager.  Here's the Sands Stud side bet pay table. 



If you hit a straight flush or royal, however, you'll have to be content with just taking the normal 10% or 100% win.   

In an interesting twist, players can bet the side bet on the Dealer's hand as well, with all of the same rules still applying.

Finally, once every 15 hands or so, a lucky player on the floor will be selected and win 5 free side bet credits ($125), assuming he's been betting the side bet.  And every 80 hands or so, a lucky dealer will be selected, and all the players who have been doing the side bet at that table will receive 5 credits.

To the Sands credit, they now pay 100-1 on the Royal Flush, the way it should be.

Minimum bet is $200.

Craps - Stingy 3-4-5 odds.  City wide high $300 minimum pass line bet.

Money Wheel - Minimum bet is $100.  The 1-1, 3-1 and 5-1 bets carry  the lowest house edge of “only” 7.69%, making it the worst table game in Macau.

Roulette - Inside/Outside minimums of only $25 and $50.

Sic Bo - 11 different bets.  $200 Big/Small minimum bets.

Slot Machines
- Probably well over 2000 slot machines.  Minimums are from 2 cents to $10.  As per usual in Macau, most machines are under $1.

Texas Hold Em
- 12 poker tables, blinds $25/$50, $50/$100 etc up to $1000/$2000.  If all the players at the table agree to bet more, the $1000/$2000 limit can be exceeded.

Three Card Baccarat - Minimum bet is $500.

Three Card Poker
- Minimum bet is $300.

War - Minimum bet is $300.

 

VIP PROGRAM

The Venetian dead chip program is the same as at all Sands properties.  



For every $400,000 rolled, members get a free night in the hotel, for a maximum of three times a month.
 

HOTEL
 
I used to think the Venetian lobby belonged to another century, but that's before I found out it was all wallpaper.  That's par for the course on the Cotai Strip, where creativity and originality are treated like unwanted objects.  Now everytime I'm in the Venetian lobby, it makes me appreciate the one in the Lisboa that much more.

 

Venetian Macao lobby Venetian Macao main lobby front desk at the Venetian Macao 

 

Now Macau's second largest hotel, the Venetian offers 3000 suites, at prices probably much lower than you’d think.  Midweek suites are currently on for only $1397, thanks to a 30 day advanced booking promotion that slashes rates by 20%.  That's about what you pay for rooms on the Macau Peninsula in places like L'Arc or Starworld, while suites at MGM and the Wynn cost twice as much.  In other words, it's tremendous value.    

Suite prices are listed in HKD, and include all tax and service fees.



I stayed in the Royale Deluxe Suite in 2014.  The room definitely looked 10 years old, and some maintainance is definitely required after being abused by mainland visitors for the better part of a decade.

 

living room inside the Royale Suite at the Venetian Macao TV inside the Venetian Macao Royal Suite sofa, table and lamps inside the Royale Suite at the Venetian Macao

 

Better bathroom faciliites and newer electronic equipment would help a lot as well.

 

Royale Suite bathroom at the Venetian Macao shower and tub at the Venetian Macao Royale Suite King bed in the Royale Suite at the Venetian Macao Venetian Macao Royale Suite 

 

If you're travelling in families or large groups though, the size of the room might just be what the doctor ordered.

 

POOL

 

The Venetian has four pools, as well as a few heated Jacuzzis.  Poolside cabanas are now free of charge and come equipped with a 42 inch plasma TV and telephone.  Quite surprisingly, they're also air conditioned! 

 
The swimming pools are open daily from 7 am to 7 pm.    

DINING

The Venetian has a lot of restaurants and I don’t get paid by the word anymore.  In fact, I don’t get paid at all.  So for this this review, I've only included the main eateries, dividing the list between International and Chinese fare.   

Western and International

Cafe Deco Macao - Open 24 hours, Cafe Deco runs a buffet twice daily.  Lunch prices Monday to Friday are $208 adults/$105 children and on the weekend they’re $228 and $128.  For weekday dinner buffet the price is $318/$160 and on weekends it’s $358/$190.

A la carte prices are as follows:

Chinese: $75 to $142       Burgers/Sandwiches: $128 to $158      
Asian: $138 to $168         Meat dishes: $142 to $162
Curry: $125 to $168         Salads: $130 to $178
Pizza: $148 to $178         Grilled: $298 to $368

Cafe Deco is shop 1036, and is located across from the Cotai Arena. 

Golden Peacock - Owners of a Michelin star for 5 years running now, Golden Peacock is the best Indian restaurant in  town, and it isn’t particularly close.  

Appetizers: $78 to $175
Soup: $98 to $108
Vegetarian: $98 to $130
Meat: $130 to $316
Rice: $65 to $152
Dessert: $68 to $108

At lunch the only thing available is a buffet that costs $188 a head.

At night, there’s also a 6 course Tasting Menu available for $588, which is simply remarkable.  To read more about that, just click here: Golden Peacock

Golden Peacock is located beside McSorley’s Ale House and is open daily from 11 am to 3 pm, and 6 pm to 11 pm.

McSorley's Ale House
- Pub type place is half bar and half restaurant.  Let’s start with the food.

Appetizers: $78 to $198
Soup and Salad: $58 to $138
Burgers, Sandwiches: $132 to $158 
Pub favorites: $130 to $188  

Drink prices are all fairly reasonable.

Beers: $52 to $65
Wine: $58 to $62
Whisky: $68 to $88
Hard stuff: $55 to $75

Wednesday is Grilled Sausage and Mash night which comes with a pint of Guinness for $188 while Mexican fare takes over on Thursdays evenings.  Quesadillas, enchiladas and fajitas etc are all available for  $118 to $208. 

They also have quite a few TV's tuned into international sports events.  McSorley's Ale House is Shop 1038 and can be found around the corner from the Cotai Arena.  Hours are from 12 pm to 1 am daily.

Morton's of Chicago - American steakhouse will have you reaching for your American dollars when it's time to pay the bill.

Appetizers: $120 to $230        
Salads: $120 to $135      
Prime Ocean Platters: $455 to $1500  
Steaks: $538 to $1516   

Signature dishes: $395 to $680                                  

Morton's is daily open from 5:00 pm to 11 pm.  The bar opens a couple hours earlier at 3 pm.

Portofino - Portofino has tables outside overlooking the pool.  Prices are much lower than you'd expect for a premium Italian joint.

Appetizers: $95 to $250   Pasta: $140 to $398
Salad: $88 to $140          Grill: $230 to $498
Soup: $75 to $110           Pizza: $130 to $180

At lunch they do a great all you can eat special for $158.  For my review of it, please click here: Portofino

On Sundays, the all you can eat special gets bumped up to $298, but at least it comes with dessert.

There’s also a cool secluded private bar section that is criminally unknown.  Named Spirito Bar it’s open from 6 pm to 1 am daily.  From 6 pm to 9 pm on weekdays, it runs a Buy 1 Get 1 Free promotion, while selected wines are 30% off.

Portofino is located near the West Lobby entrance in shop 1040.  Lunch hours are from 11 am to 3 pm Monday to Sunday, while dinner goes from 6 pm to 11 pm Sunday to Thursday and from 6 pm to 12 am Friday and Saturday. 

Asian
 
Bambu - All day buffet dining at Bambu.  They mostly do Chinese and Southeastern Asian cuisine.

Breakfast Buffet (7 am to 10 am): $168/$84 (3-12 yr old children)
Lunch Buffet (11 am to 3 pm): $218/$108 (3-12 yr old children)
Dinner Buffet (6 pm - 10 pm): $298/$148 (3-12 yr old children)

Bambu is shop 1033, located in the hallway between the West lobby and the casino.  

Canton
- Canton mostly serves Cantonese food (surprise!), but other mainland styles are also available.

Appetizers: $68 to $168        Chef’s Recommendations: $100 to $380
Soup: $70 to $180                Meat: $100 to $380
Bird’s Nest: $400 to $420      Claypot: $128 to $220
Abalone: $280 to $3380        Vegetables: $90 to $120   
Seafood: $200 to $680          Rice/Noodles: $130 to $220
                   
There are also two set meals at night that run $980 (6 courses) and $1480 (7 courses) respectively.

Hours are from 11 am to 3 pm and from 6 pm to 10 pm daily.  On Saturday nights they stay open until 11 pm.  Shop 1018 on the hotel map, it's located close to the casino floor and Morton's Steakhouse.  

North
- Excellent Northeastern Chinese cuisine on the menu at North.

Chef's Selections: $180 to $450
Soup: $45 to $68
Cold Dishes: $48 to $88
Hot Dishes: 52 to $290
Dumplings: $56 to $62
Rice and Noodles: $78

North is accessible via the casino.  Hours are from 11 am to 11 pm Monday to Thursday and from 11 am to 1 am on Fridays and Saturdays.

GYM

The Venetian gym gets the job done - barely.  I definitely pictured something larger and more modern, but it will certainly do. 

Hours are from 6 am to 11 pm daily, and it's located on the 8th floor.

 

SPA

Spa facilities on the other hand are an outright fail.  Without question the Venetian's biggest black mark, guests get no free access to a sauna, steam room, ice shower or anything.  Instead they must pay money at the new Cheersum Spa to enjoy any of that action. 

When I went it was in the process of opening, so there was a very limited menu.  And if prices continue to be so outrageous in the future, I can't see much of a future for this new venture.

The door pass is $698 for 6 hours, which gives access to a shower, bathing pool, dry steam and wet steam facilities. 

Only three massages are available so far, 45 minute foot massage for $698 (Are they crazy??) and 60 and 90 minute body massage for $898 and $1398.

Yeah, I think we’re done here.

ENTERTAINMENT

Entertainment at the Venetian is centred around the Cotai Arena, which is Macau's premium venue for world class entertainment acts and sporting events.  They've had Pacquiao fights, Bon Jovi concerts, and a ton of Asian star power drop in over the years, so be sure to keep tabs on the Venetian website to see who's coming next.

 

The Venetian also hosts a lot of temporary exhibitions, many of which have been reviewed on this site, such as Ice World, Human Bodies, Dinosaurs Live!, Titanic and The Masters of Ink Painting.  They're often very good and inexpensive, if not free altogether, so be sure to drop in and see one should the chance arise.

 

In terms of day to day entertainment, the Venetian offers the children's playground Qube and Gondola Rides.

 

Qube - Qube is designed for children and teenagers aged 1 to 17, and features rainbow slides, over under barriers, zig zag net climbers, Chuck E Cheese pool ball areas, as well as PCs and video units.  Themed birthday parties are also available. 

Qube costs $130 for the first 2 hours (1 child plus 1 adult), then $60 for every hour after that.  To add an extra adult, the price is also $60.

Located on Level 5, Qube hours are from 9:30 am to 9:30 pm daily.

Gondola Rides - 51 serenading gondoliers will take you for a ride through the Grand Canal Shoppes or around the hotel on the outdoor lagoon.  Tickets cost $128 per ride for adults and $98 for children.  

 
SHOPPING

 

The Grand Canal Shoppes have well over 300 stores, most of them selling clothes, electronics and beauty accessories. 

 

There's also a lot of street perfomers roaming around, like stilt walkers, mimes, jugglers and living statues.  The Shoppes, much like the Venetian, have become a destination in themselves. 

 

gondolier inside the Grand Canal Shoppes at Venetian Macao  living statue inside the Grand Canal Shoppes at Venetian Macao stilt walker inside the Grand Canal Shoppes at Venetian Macao

  
THE LAST WORD

The Venetian Macao is a very good living option with affordable suites, great shopping and tremendous entertainment.  The anchor of the Cotai Strip, the property is packed daily with a litany of tour groups and visitors, cementing its place as the most successful hotel/casino in Macau. 

 

LOCATION

In the heart of all the action on the Cotai Strip, the Venetian is surrounded by the Galaxy, City of Dreams, Four Seasons and Sands Cotai.

 

 

 

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