If you’re interested in gambling in the Philippines, chances are you’re interested in gambling in Manila. The casinos in Metro Manila – also known as the National Capital Region – run the gamut. From big Entertainment City venues like the Solaire Resort & Casino Manila, the City of Dreams Manila casino, and the Okada Manila to smaller Manila hotel casinos, standalone gambling houses, and cardrooms, you’ll find the best blend of gaming options anywhere in Southeast Asia.
Our short guide to regional gambling in the Philippines – especially as it applies to Metro Manila casinos and integrated resorts – is the number-one resource for residents and tourists alike. The best of these venues always gives the top Vegas casinos and Macau casinos a run for their money, and the market is as healthy as it’s ever been.
And while it’s true that with online casino gambling, you no longer have to “resort” to Philippine casino resorts, that’s not always your best option. For traditional brick-and-mortar gamblers, Entertainment City Casinos, Manila City Casinos, and the smaller surrounding Manila gambling districts offer a can’t-miss legal betting experience.
Is Casino Gambling Legal In Metro Manila?
Yes! Casino gambling is legal in Metro Manila (and all throughout Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao), but there are a few serious restrictions in the Philippine gambling laws governing the activity.
First, to gamble in person at a legal Philippine casino, you have to be 21 years of age. For players aged 18-20 – which is considered the legal gambling age in most other global regions – that can be an issue.
The other major problem with domestic PH gambling at local casinos is that not all venues cater to all players. In the Philippines, many retail casinos restrict their clientele to “VIP” members. That is, customers are often required to prove they meet certain mandated income levels before they’re allowed to gamble on the gaming floor.
Additionally, there are betting limits that artificially cap how much money any player can wager during a given week or month.
While there’s regulatory movement underway to expand local casino options to more users (as most legal Philippine casinos cater to wealthy citizens, tourists, and junket customers), it will still be some time before just anyone can gamble freely.
Is Online Casino Gambling Legal In Metro Manila?
Yes! Online casino gambling – aka iGaming – has been legal in the Philippines at the domestic level since mid-2021. During the coronavirus pandemic, government regulators decided that online slots, online table games, and online sports betting would provide the Manila casino market (and, to a lesser degree, the national casino market) with an effective safety net.
This worked, as online casino gambling was immediately popular. Still, domestic iGaming in the Philippines has the same problem as land-based gaming: Access is limited to players who are 21 and older, have an above-average income, and are already established customers at the various Manila gambling venues hosting real-money online casino games.
Luckily, even though the Philippines now has domestic online gambling, the country still allows full legal access to offshore gambling sites. So, if you don’t “qualify” for a local online betting account, you can still bet real money safely and legally over the Internet by signing up with any of the sites featured in our online Philippine casino reviews.
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Metro Manila Casino Destinations – List Of Casinos In Manila
Not including domestic online casinos (which remain comparatively restricted in terms of access), there are four general kinds of Manila gambling venues: integrated resorts, hotel casinos, standalone casinos, and card rooms. Each of these has their pros and cons.
The actual history of gambling in the Philippines goes back hundreds of years, but commercial gambling in the Philippines only got its start in 1976. That’s when PAGCOR – the Philippine Amusement And Gaming Corporation (i.e. the government’s gambling regulator) – was formally created.
In 1977, the first casino in Manila opened. This, called the Manila Bay Casino, was a floating casino operated inside the MS Philippine Tourist ocean liner. After a fire destroyed the venue in 1979, PAGCOR moved to regulate land-based casinos. (In addition to regulating these venues, it should be noted that PAGCOR operates many of the smaller brick-and-mortar casinos in Metro Manila and elsewhere under the “Casino Filipino” brand.)
Of course, the biggest draws today are the so-called Philippine integrated resorts (aka Philippine IRs) – particularly Metro Manila casino resorts. And with the country’s gambling market expanding and new Manila casinos cropping up all the time, there’s more in store than ever before, no matter where you want to play.
Metro Manila Integrated Resorts
If you’re looking for a hotel and casino in Manila, the first venue on your list is probably one of the big Manila casino resorts. These National Capital Region mainstays – called integrated resorts (i.e. resorts that “integrate” gambling entertainment) – are the cream of the crop for the industry.
The biggest of these are the Entertainment City venues. As of 2022, there are three billion-dollar Philippine casinos in E-City: the Solaire, the Okada, and the City of Dreams. But while E-City is basically the Vegas Strip of the Philippines, it’s not the only place in Metro Manila you can find massive hotel casinos.
- Solaire Resort & Casino – Parañaque (Entertainment City)
- City of Dreams Manila – Parañaque (Entertainment City)
- Okada Manila – Parañaque (Entertainment City)
- NayonLanding – Parañaque (Entertainment City, Under Construction)
- Solaire North – Quezon City (Triangle Park, Under Construction)
- Westside City Resorts World – Parañaque (Entertainment City, Under Construction)
Metro Manila Hotel Casinos
In addition to the above IRs, Manila is home to over 10 smaller hotel casinos. These are akin to the resort-style venues in that they all have the typical lodgings and dining options you expect. However, they differ in overall size and scope.
Whereas IRs are massive properties with all kinds of gambling activities and tourist-friendly fare, these smaller casino hotels in Manila cater more to actual Filipino gamblers looking to have a weekend getaway.
In other words, if you’re a tourist or are using a junket service, one of the above IRs will likely be more appealing. But if you want an upscale and down-to-earth bit of gambling fun, the following venues are worth a look:
- Lancaster Hotel – Mandaluyong (Ortigas Center)
- Madison Square Garden Hotel & Casino – Mandaluyong (Barangka Ilaya)
- Malabon Grand Hotel – Malabon (Potrero)
- Manila Grand Opera Hotel and Casino – City of Manila (Santa Cruz)
- Midas Hotel & Casino – Pasay (San Rafael)
- Networld Hotel Spa & Casino – Pasay (San Isidro)
- New World Manila Bay Hotel & Casino – City of Manila (Malate)
- Sheraton Manila Bay – City of Manila (Malate)
- Sofitel Philippine Plaza Hotel – Pasay (CCP Complex)
- Waterfront Manila Pavilion Hotel & Casino – City of Manila (Ermita)
- Winford Hotel and Casino – City of Manila (Santa Cruz)
Metro Manila Standalone Casinos
Not everyone who wants to gamble wants to gamble for days. In that case, a standalone casino is going to be your best option.
These facilities are fully fledged casinos and offer all the typical Philippine slot machines, blackjack tables, roulette wheels, video poker games, and other popular gaming fare. But they do so in a much more casual way.
These are the venues you’ll want to check out if you’re in a smaller district and only want to gamble for a few hours without being distracted by any superfluous bells and whistles (except, of course, those from the slots when you hit that jackpot).
- Casino Filipino Binondo – City of Manila (Binondo)
- Casino Filipino Citystate – City of Manila (Ermita)
- Casino Filipino Malabon – Malabon (Potrero)
- Casino Filipino Santa Cruz – City of Manila (Santa Cruz)
- Casino Filipino Universal – City of Manila (Santa Cruz)
- Club Tropicana Las Piñas – Las Piñas (Almanza)
- Club Tropicana Santa Mesa – City of Manila (Santa Mesa)
Metro Manila Card Rooms
In the Philippines, the smallest venues are card rooms. These are akin to the card rooms you may have experienced in other countries. That is, they tend to offer smaller rooms with more intimate atmospheres.
When you and your friends just want to play a few hands of poker or hit up some blackjack tables while you enjoy a drink or two, these card rooms make for a “full house” of gaming action.
Note: Card rooms may also occasionally host so-called e-Games, which are Internet-connected casino games played from retail kiosks rather than smartphones or tablets.
- Empire Poker Sports Club – Pasig (Ortigas Center)
- Master Poker Sports Club – Makati (Bel-Air Village)
- Metro Card Club – Pasig (Ortigas Center)
- Midas Touch Poker Sports Club – Pasig (Oranbo)
Online Metro Manila Casinos
Until recently, online casino gambling with Manila-based operators was strictly forbidden by Philippine gambling law. However, due to coronavirus quarantines and pandemic-related casino closures, the local betting industry suffered a massive downturn throughout 2020.
This led the state to authorize PAGCOR regulation of online casino gambling (as well as online sports betting via MegaSportsWorld) by mid-2021.
While there are tedious age and income restrictions associated with domestic online gambling in the Philippines, the option does exist. Lawmakers are also considering steps to expand access to more local players. There’s no telling how long such Philippine gambling expansion might take, but there’s good news, too:
If you don’t qualify to gamble online domestically or if you simply wish to have a bigger gaming and betting market selection, offshore casinos, sportsbooks, and poker rooms accept Filipino players legally and safely. Even better, most of them do so at just 18 and up.
Domestic Online Casinos In Manila
All the major Metro Manila casino operators host their own legal online casino portals. These venues have online slots, online table games, and – in some cases – even online live-dealer casino games.
However, as of 2022, domestic Philippine online gambling is an exclusive activity restricted to established “VIP” players. Until these local gaming venues are more accessible to all Filipino gamblers, they probably won’t be the best option for your needs.
Offshore Online Casinos In Manila
Offshore online casinos are safe and legal to use. There are no Philippine gaming laws barring access to these sites for the country’s residents. Still, it’s important to choose only an established, reputable operator, as there are hundreds of online casinos – and hundreds of online casino scams – out there.
As long as you stick with the sites recommended here, you’ll be able to enjoy total peace of mind playing fair-iGaming-certified games in any of the following gambling categories:
Other Types Of Gambling In Metro Manila
In addition to traditional casino amusements, Metro Manila is home to four other gambling markets that attract a more “local” clientele. In order of popularity – starting with the most popular – these are:
- Sabong/Cockfighting – Sabong, called cockfighting in the West, is effectively the national sport of the Philippines. Cockfighting goes back hundreds of years in the islands, and small local cockpits offer legal sabong betting regulated by PAGCOR. As of 2022, online sabong (aka eSabong) is illegal in the Philippines.
- Sports Betting – All local sports betting in the Philippines is regulated by PAGCOR, and all odds are offered through MegaSportsWorld (MSW) sportsbooks. You can bet on limited national and international action using the MSW service.
- PCSO Lottery/STL – Operated by the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO), the Philippine Lottery offers a number of “numbers” games. The PCSO also operates countless Small Town Lottery (STL) shops which exist to compete with and displace the illegal jueteng gambling
- Horse Racing Betting – Horse racing betting is legal in the Philippines and has been a government-regulated gambling pastime for over 100 years. There are three major horse tracks in the Philippines, all of which are located in and around Metro Manila on the island of Luzon.