Cotai Strip Attractions

(Last updated: January 3, 2023)

The Cotai Strip does a few things better than any other place in Macau, so if a large part of your trip revolves around the following activities, then you might want to consider basing your stay from there.

Specifically, I am referring to Entertainment, Nightclubs, Shopping, Children Activities, Dining, Art and Spas.

ENTERTAINMENT

Large scale entertainment on the Cotai Strip ebbs and flows – sometimes a lot is on, while other times, the pickings are slim.  Sadly we’re currently in the middle of a dry spell, which I’m starting to think could be the new normal moving forward.  Regardless, there should still be enough to keep you occupied for 2 or 3 nights.

Here’s a rundown of what’s currently playing.  (Please note that the House of Dancing Water has been discontinued until 2024.)

House of Dancing Water (City of Dreams)

Macau’s most successful show has been selling out since it opened in 2011.  Mainland visitors love it, while Westerners usually aren’t as impressed, mostly due to a rocky story that doesn’t always make sense.  Regardless, the stunts and diving are worth the price of admission alone.  Tickets start from $598 with two shows daily at 5 pm and 8 pm.  On Tuesdays and Wednesdays, it’s dark.

House of Dancing Water

Eiffel Tower Experience (Parisian)

You might not be able to go to Paris, but there’s an Eiffel Tower in Macau.  Half the size of the original, the newest Cotai Strip landmark is a sight to behold at night, when it’s ablaze in a sea of color and light.  It’s not too shabby during the day either and that’s probably the best time to visit it, given the better views afforded then.

Eiffel Tower at Parisian Macao

There are two viewing decks on Level 7 and 37, with tickets $100 for adults and $80 for children.  Hours are from 10 am to 10 pm daily.

LIVE MUSIC

The Cotai Strip has several venues that offer live music.  Due to the rotating nature of house bands, I won’t keep an updated list of who’s playing, just know that the shows generally start from 8 or 9 pm nightly and carry on until midnight.

As of January 2024, the only bars with live music are Roadhouse (only Saturday), Macallan Whisky Bar, Ritz-Carlton Bar and the St. Regis Bar.

Reviews for the Ritz and Macallan will be up within the month, assuming I ever get over my cold.

As always, be sure to keep tabs on the Cotai Arena (Venetian), Parisian Theater (Parisian), Londoner Arena (Londoner Macao) and Broadway Theater (Broadway) to see which singers, shows, concerts and activities will be on in town when you are.

Nightclubs

The only nightclub still open in Cotai is Club Para at City of DreamsChina Rouge at  Galaxy still hasn’t opened following Covid, while Showhouse at Studio City is gone for good.

Ladies Night at Para is on Saturdays, and the only evening it’s fairly certain to be busy.

SHOPPING

With no shortage of retail space, shopping is one of the major calling cards of the Cotai Strip.  Clothes, cosmetics, jewellery, electronics, bags and watches are all in plentiful supply, at prices that suit all comers.  The shops and boutiques at Wynn Palace and Four Seasons are exclusively up market, while you should be able to find more economical brands and goods in the other hotels.

Grand Canal Shoppes at the Venetian Macao
Grand Canal Shoppes at the Venetian Macao

Keep in mind that some of the malls in Cotai are tourist destinations in themselves and worth checking out just to have a look.  Attracting more than just would be shoppers, there are canals and gondolas at the Venetian, Champs-Elysees and the Arc de Triomphe at the Parisian, and Times Square and Beverly Hills at Studio City.

CHILDREN ACTIVITIES

Macau is quickly becoming a top tourist destination for children, and the Cotai Strip is leading the charge. For some of the great fun they can expect to have there, please follow the link to the Macau for Children section.

Qube Kingdom at Parisian Macao
Qube Kingdom at Parisian Macao

DINING

Dining is a very significant plus no matter where you are in Macau, and that’s doubly true on the Strip.  Michelin stars mingle with food streets and food courts to provide every kind of food imaginable, at prices that should suit all comers.  From simple street stall fare to some off the most highly acclaimed restaurants in the world, no one ever need go hungry in Cotai.

Here are some of the top restaurants I’d like to recommend divided by food type.

Chinese

Lai Heen  (Galaxy)

Truly worthy of the Ritz; a superlative venue with stunning food and out of this world service.

Zi Yat Heen  (Four Seasons)

More low key than lavish, Zi Yat Heen has been impressing for years; Michelin also approves (1 star).

Jade Dragon  (City of Dreams)

Jade Dragon is up to 3 Michelin stars now, which might be 3 stars too many; regardless, the service and environment are both world class.

Broadway Food Street  (Broadway Macau)

Fun little food street with live performances and some of Asia’s most well known snacks and bites.

Brassiere  (Parisian)

Hip little bistro at the Parisian, serving casual French fare in a relaxed environment.

Italian

Portofino  (Venetian)

Sharp looking venue serving good and affordable Italian fare.

Western/International

Ritz-Carlton Cafe  (Galaxy)

Immaculate venue still drops jaws seven years after opening; the Sunday champagne buffet is indulgence incarnate.

Buffet

Urban Kitchen (Galaxy)

Urban Kitchen has set the standard for buffet dining in Macau since it opened in 2015.

SPAS

I don’t know if the spas on the Strip are worth the prices which basically start from $1000 for hour long massages, but I am sure of one thing.  Self indulgence is a skill and only those who have truly mastered it can enjoy life to the fullest.  Thus I present to you the fully legit spas of the Cotai Strip, where decadence is divine and tantalizing body massage, body scrubs, wraps, and facials rule the day. 

Now, I personally get 2 hour massages in Zhuhai for $158 that are just as good as anything you’d get in Cotai, but if you’ve got money to burn, you might as well do it on a clean bed.  (Oh no, did I just say too much….?)

As for tips and suggestions, I’d investigate the spas at Wynn Palace, Four Seasons, Ritz Carlton and St. Regis first, before considering Banyan Tree and MGM Cotai next.

Couple treatments are always fun (and really expensive too), so if you’re travelling with your significant other, head over to the Four Seasons, Ritz-Carlton, and Wynn Palace, the only spas in Cotai that offer such services.

CONCLUSION

As a way to finish up, I’d like to remind you that the Cotai Strip is really out in the middle of nowhere.  There’s nothing there but massive hotel properties and empty lots, with nothing to see or do in between. 

Making use of free shuttle buses provided by the hotels is often the best way to move between them, with such services generally ending around midnight.  As for what’s in the area, Taipa Village is within walking distance from Galaxy and Venetian, while Coloane and Coloane Village are easily accessible via public buses on Estrada Do Istmo, with the fare $6 a person.

Keep in mind that unless you enjoy walking around big hotels and casinos, I don’t think the Strip is very interesting in the morning or afternoon.  For that reason, maybe the best time to visit it is at lunch or dinner, before cutting loose at night.

For a ranking system of the individual hotels geared toward guests and casual visitors alike, please follow the link below!

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