Casino Mahjong Gangtok

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Casino Mahjong is a part of Hotel Mayfair, a 5 star hotel near Ranipool, a little outside of Gangtok city. One can take a reserve taxi from Gangtok (Rs. 300-400 one way) or a share taxi going towards Ranipool (Rs. 40) and get down at Hotel Mayfair. The casino charges an entry fee of Rs. 3000 which includes government tax (Rs. 500), unlimited snacks, limited number of drinks, buffet dinner, and non-cash casino chips of Rs. 2000 (Rs. 500x4). Entry fee is valid for 24 hours which means next day's entry is almost free when only Rs. 500 is charged to cover food and beverages, but no free chips are given. Credit Cards are accepted. Non-cash chips can be used at table games but the player needs to bet a minimum of Rs. 500 using these chips. If the player wins, winning is paid in cash chips. On lean business days, the dealers sometimes change the Rs. 500 non-cash chips for lower denomination chips on Blackjack table. Casino Mahjong is open 24 hours but before going, one can confirm on 03592-250555. Keep reading...
Also Read: Casino Sikkim (Royal Plaza) Gangtok

Casino Mahjong at Hotel Mayfair Gangtok, Sikkim

A hostess at Casino Mahjong, Hotel Mayfair Gangtok, Sikkim

Gaming Area

Casino Mahjong is larger and its restaurant and entertainment area is partitioned from the gaming floor. Slot machines are outside the main casino floor and have minimum bet of Rs. 10 each. I tried a few of them and had absolutely no luck. These are multi reel electronic slots where winning can be expected by playing all the 21 lines. That means each spin costs Rs. 210 and is over in a matter of seconds. Pay-out ratio is unknown and I think would be around 75%. Slots are best avoided in any casino in India. Main gaming area has about 10 tables consisting of Roulette, Baccarat, Blackjack, Mini Flush, and Kitty. Read my Casino Strategy & Tips

Gaming Rules

Minimum bet at Roulette starts at Rs. 50 (number) and Rs. 200 (outside). Other table games have minimum and maximum bets of Rs. 200 and Rs. 10,000 apart from one Rs. 500 minimum Baccarat table. No surrender is allowed in Blackjack. Anyway no one seems to play Blackjack in Gangtok. Similar to Casino Sikkim, cash cannot be tendered at the tables. The player needs to exchange cash for chips at the counter or use the help of one of the guest relations executives or GREs (helpful girls who stand around the tables willing to provide any assistance the players need) who will get the chips from the counter in exchange for cash or using your credit card.

Gaming Experience

Casino Mahjong being a "tourist attraction", the gaming experience here sometimes can be less than professional. More 'first time' visitors on a table game not only slow down the game but sometimes end up irritating the dealer and other players. The dealer has to spend more time telling the players not to touch the cards or not to take the cards off the table or even in explaining the rules of the game. From the casino's point of view, being a tourist attraction can be beneficial and anyway no one can do anything about it.

Entertainment / Dining

The variety of free drinks is good but the snacks, particularly the vegetarian ones are of a very limited choice. The restaurant has a small stage for dance performances which go on up to 1 a.m. The dancers are from Nepal mostly and dance to latest Hindi film songs. The performances can be seen from some of the gaming tables. After a while, the entertainment becomes repetitive but if one needs a break from the table game one has been playing for 3 hours, it would be nice to get a drink and sit in the restaurant to watch this live Chitrahaar for 15 minutes before heading back to tackle that tough dealer. Buffet dinner is good but starts getting out of stock around midnight so it would be better to eat early. The casino provides complementary ride to the players' Gangtok hotel though one may have to wait for a car to be available.

My verdict

A casino is supposed to be an avenue for entertainment and going to Casino Mahjong in a group can be a lot of fun. Music and dance, food and drinks, coupled with a bit of luck at the tables can make for a memorable evening. Just gamble responsibly. Also Read: Casino Sikkim (Royal Plaza) Gangtok

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I left my day job in October 2013 and became a full time blogger. I love travel and hence a travel blog was the obvious place to start from. The result is I currently live in Bengaluru, India. - Narinder Singh.


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