The City of Manila is often referred to as the “Heart of the Philippines.” Founded by the Spanish in 1571, Manila became the first chartered city in the nation in 1901 and is still the biggest economic contributor for commerce throughout the country. Attracting more than a million tourists annually, Manila is known for its historic landmarks and big city nightlife – a big part of which is casino gambling. The city was actually the very first major Philippine gambling region!
While there aren’t too many dedicated casinos in Manila City itself, Manila is the central hub for wider Metro Manila, home of Entertainment City gambling entertainment and some of the biggest resort casinos in all of Southeast Asia. But as stated, there are more “nearby” gaming options. Plus, with online casinos in the Philippines now being legal both domestically and in an offshore capacity, you have more chances to win than ever before.
Is Casino Gambling Legal In Manila City?
Absolutely. There are many casinos on Luzon island and several in Manila city, despite the bigger attractions in nearby Entertainment City and elsewhere in Metro Manila. These offer all the games you expect, and Manila residents can access these facilities to bet and win real money.
However, there are a few limitations with local casinos in Manila. For one thing, the legal age to participate is 21 and up, leaving players between the ages of 18 and 20 out of luck.
Secondly, not all 21+ Filipino gamblers are allowed to play at these venues. Per Philippine gambling law, casino gambling is available only to those residents and citizens who can show a certain minimum income. This is designed to ensure that only those players who can “afford” to lose money are allowed to gamble in PH casinos.
Naturally, though, this unfairly targets a lot of middle-class gamblers and leaves them with no local options to enjoy their favorite pastimes. Fortunately, such players can always gamble online.
Manila City Casino Destinations
When most people talk about Manila casinos, they’re going to be talking about Metro Manila casinos. And that can get confusing. Remember, the City of Manila is just one of 16 different cities that make up the Metro Manila region. In other words, there are lot more casinos throughout all of Metro Manila than there are in Manila City alone.
That said, there are several places you can gamble in Manila City, as gambling is such a long-established entertainment industry. And that makes sense, given that Manila is the second most populous single city in the Philippines and is the actual capital of the country.
If you’re looking for a casino in Manila, Philippines, these are the venues that are currently operating inside Manila City. Most Manila casinos are small venues, with several of them owned and operated by PAGCOR under the Casino Filipino brand.
You may also find Manila card rooms/poker rooms, Manila E-Games venues, and MSW sports betting locations that are not currently listed below (as this list is a work in progress):
- Casino Filipino Malate
- Casino Filipino Ronquillo
- Casio Filipino Ermita
- Masters Poker Club
- Red Dragon Poker Room
- Sta Mesa Tropicana Casino
- Waterfront Manila Pavilion Hotel & Casino*
*Under construction; Launch TBA 2023
Note: Tourists and travelers may want to expand their searches to casinos in Metro Manila, as that will give you more choice as well as access to the world-renowned Entertainment City casino resorts.
Domestic Casinos In Manila City
As you can see, there are only a handful of domestic brick-and-mortar casinos in Manila itself. These are not what most visitors would consider to be “tourist destinations.”
That said, with the forthcoming launch of the Waterfront Manila Casino (TBA 2023), that’s sure to change. The Waterfront promises to be a major resort-style casino venue once it’s open for business.
Still, these smaller Manila City casino venues have a certain local charm, and they offer a convenient and accessible way to play all the games you enjoy. And naturally, you can also access domestic online casinos from within the city (provided you’re at least 21 years of age and meet the financial requirements necessary to participate).
Offshore Online Casinos In Manila City
For most Manila residents and visitors, the more convenient and accessible gambling option will be to play with a reputable offshore casino site. These Philippine online casinos serve players at just 18 and up, and there are no financial requirements attached to site membership.
As long as you choose an approved operator from our list of reviews, you’ll be guaranteed a legit, legal, and safe online casino experience.
These sites have all the casino games you expect, including both RNG electronic casino games from the best casino software designers and live online casino tables featuring real dealers and croupiers.
- Online Slot Machines
- Online Blackjack Games
- Online Roulette (American)
- Online Roulette (European)
- Online Baccarat + Mini-Bac
- Online Bingo Games
- Online Pai Gow Games
- Online Sic Bo Games
- Online Mahjong Games
- Online Craps Games
- Online Keno Games
- Online Lotto Games
- Online Scratch-Offs
- Online Live-Dealer Casino Games
- + More!
Pro-Tip: Remember that you can gamble on the go! Philippine online casinos are 100% mobile compatible with all modern Android devices, iPhones, and iPads so you don’t have to be in Manila to bet in Manila!
Other Types Of Gambling In Manila City
In addition to casino gambling, Manila City is the central hub for a number of other popular gambling markets. These are listed below, in order of popularity:
- Philippine Sabong/Cockfighting – Sabong is effectively the national pastime of the Philippines, and there are numerous cockpits located throughout Manila. Cockfighting is a legitimate gambling game in the Islands, with all related betting regulated by PAGCOR. However, eSabong – or online sabong – has been temporarily suspended after briefly coming online in 2021.
- Philippine Sports Betting – Sports betting in the Philippines is offered at the domestic level by MegaSportsWorld (MSW). MSW is regulated by PAGCOR and operates both retail kiosks and online betting portals. MSW betting is limited to players aged 21+, but several offshore Philippine casinos have legal sportsbooks open to players at 18+.
- Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office Lottery – The PCSO Lottery is the national lottery product regulated by the Philippine government. Most lotto outlets exist in the form of Small Town Lottery (STL) venues, which are meant to reduce demand for the extremely popular illegal numbers game called Jueteng.
- Philippine Horse Racing Betting – Horse betting in the Philippines goes back a long time. The Manila Jockey Club was founded in Manila City in 1867, predating the city’s modern incorporation! Sadly, in late 2022, it was reported that the Manila Jockey Club was shuttering all racing operations. Luckily, there are two more racetracks in Metro Manila for fans of the ponies, and online horse racing betting is also available.