The Hippodrome Casino is located in Leicester Square. I visited the casino on a Saturday night, February 8, 2014. As a testimony of its recent popularity, the casino was packed with locals and tourists, 25 – 35 years old, on average. The great atmosphere in the Hippodrome alone is worth a visit, but what really impressed me is the wide variety of casino gems on offer, including Roulette, Blackjack, Baccarat, Omaha Poker, Craps (Dice) and Pai Gow.
Access Hippodrome Casino London:
To get to the Hippodrome Casino, take the tube (London Underground) to the Leicester Square station. The Leicester Square area is packed with traffic. If you drive to the casino, you should expect slow driving and may as well leave the Ferrari at home…
Entrance Hippodrome Casino London
The Hippodrome casino is open 24/7. Admission is free, as in most British casinos. Be sure to have your ID with you. The casino policy is to ask you for a valid photo ID if you look under 21. But you will also need your ID to withdraw your winnings. This is also common in British casinos.
The dress code at the Hippodrome is smart casual. I was easily admitted to the casino with my jeans and sweatshirt and saw very few jackets inside.
For more details on admission requirements at the Hippodrome casino, click here.
Atmosphere Hippodrome Casino London
Leicester Square is also home to the Napoleon Casino and the Casino At the Empire. After my visit to these two casinos last year, I wrote that they are very popular with Asians. It was only on my recent visit to the Hippodrome that I realized that Leicester Square is very close to Chinatown, which may explain the relatively high number of Asians at the Leicester square casinos.
The crowed at the Hippodrome was relatively young. As at the Grosvenor Casino, if you are around 30 years old, you would still feel comfortable. If you are over 40, you may feel a bit overage. If you are over 50, look for a different casino.
The Hippodrome boasts one of most beautiful venues is London. It is located in a grand, historic building originally designed as a theatre. The €40m project to transform the old theater house into a casino began in 2009 and continued until July 2012, when the Hippodrome opened its doors. The Hippodrome has a wide central floor on the ground level, and three upper levels of balconies overlooking the center floor. An enormous chandelier is hanging from ceiling at the center of the casino. The dominant color in the casino is Lilac. It is in the uniform, the tables and the carpets. The atmosphere throughout the casino is lively and pleasant.
Smoking Hippodrome Casino London
Good news for smokers. Unlike the Grosvenor Casino, which sends smokers to smoke outside, rain or shine, and doesn’t even provide a rain cover, the Hippodrome has an indoor smoking area which is an integral part of the casino. It offers gambling and a smokers’ bar. Thanks to good ventilation, you can’t smell the cigarette smoke. The smoking area is located on the first floor.
Classic games Hippodrome Casino London:
From my experience with Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands casinos, I am used to seeing mostly Roulette tables in the classic games area. This is not the case at the Hippodrome. Here the Blackjack tables outnumber the Roulette tables. On the ground floor, you can play the following live table games: Blackjack, Roulette, Casino War, Three Card Poker, Casino Holdem, Pai Gow, Baccarat (Punto Banco).
Scattered all over the ground floor, you can find electronic Roulette stations. Each station is linked to three live tables you can join.
The level below the ground floor also offers live table games. Usually the lower level is for players with a lower budget. As was the case here. On the lower level, you can play Blackjack starting with £5 bets, while on the ground floor the minimum bet is £10.
There is also a Craps table on the lower level that attracts its own little community of Craps players. I As I learned at the Hippodrome, Craps is called Dice in the UK.
The highlight of the night for me was the Pai Gow table. I haven’t seen this game in many European casinos. If you are looking for some variety, you should give it a try.
For more information on table games at the Hippodrome casino, click here.
Poker Hippodrome Casino London
The Poker room is located on the second floor. But I better say “Poker rooms”, plural. At the time of my visit, a first Poker room with six tables filled out completely. The casino gets 10 points for immediately opening a second Poker room. The players at the Poker tables were also 25 – 35 years old on average, and about half were tourists. The game verity included 1/2 Texas Holdem (normal or deep stack) and Omaha (!) Poker.
Bar Hippodrome Casino London
A large bar is located on the first floor. It seems to offer everything your heart desires: from exotic Asian drinks, to aged Malt Whiskeys. Next to the bar there is a wide lounge, which can also be used for large Poker tournaments. As there was no tournament that evening, I could relax in the lounge with some colleagues. A second, smaller bar is located in the smoking area.
Conclusion Hippodrome Casino London
I find the Hippodrome to be unique, even with respect to other London casinos, for offering games you don’t often find in European casinos, such as Omaha Poker, Craps and Pai Gow. As a smoker, the integrated smoking area is a big plus. Although it appears that the target audience of the casino is 25 – 35 year olds, I had a very good experience at the Hippodrome Casino, and recommend visiting it next time you are in London.