When people come for Florida vacation
they expect to have a good time and usually do but what about all the people who live here, what do they do for fun? Many like to gamble and we here in Florida have no shortage of places to get your gaming 'fix'. You can bet on almost anything here and even try your luck at several State's Lottery outlets, tickets can be purchased at almost any convenience store in the state. We also have dog racing, horse racing, Casinos that are owned and run by the Seminole Tribe of Florida, we have places to play poker and of course, gambling cruises. We also have a great little sport called Jai Alai, two players, one ball, enclosed area, it's great.
Land Based Casinos
The Seminole Tribe of Florida
has a pact with the state of Florida and therefore own most of the land based casinos. These casinos provide gamers with the opportunity to try their luck at slot machines and electronic gaming machines featuring bingo, poker and other Vegas style games. Most casinos include table games and may offer card games like Texas Hold'em, three card poker, Asia poker, 7 card stud, Omaha Hi-lo, let it ride and Baccarat a few even offer Blackjack. Most have full liquor bars and at least one fine dining or casual restaurant.
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
is a huge 90,000-square-foot casino full of music memorabilia; everywhere you look there is something fascinating to see.
Hollywood Seminole Gaming
, this Bingo was the first high stakes operation in the country.
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
is a colossal 130,000-square-foot casino and resort on 86-acres near Miami
and Ft. Lauderdale
The Brighton Seminole Bingo and Gaming Casino
offers high stakes bingo, low stakes poker, video gaming machines and is open 6 days a week.
Seminole Casino Immokalee
is the largest gambling attraction in Southwest Florida; they feature high paying gaming machines, live action poker games and a variety of poker tournaments.
The Coconut Creek Casino
is open 24-hours a day, seven days a week. They have a poker room, pull-tab gaming machines, lightning bingo and match pair bingo.
The Miccosukee Resort and Gaming
, on the eastern side of the Florida Everglades
, facility has a 1,200 seat high stakes bingo hall, over 1,790 video pull tabs and a poker room with 58 poker tables featuring 7-Card Stud, Texas Hold'em and Mini & Super Hold'em games. They are also opened 24-hours a day.
Florida Casino Cruises
Gambling cruises are popular in Florida, especially with the over fifty crowd. They normally head out to sea for half day cruises and offer fully stocked bars, snacks or full buffets. Some are all enclosed while others have on deck seating, some offer live entertainment, cabaret shows, sports bars or some other form of music or entertainment. On most ships you'll find rows and rows of slot machines, gaming tables, blackjack, roulette, craps, mini-baccarat and more. Sometimes small boarding fees apply in addition to the cost of the cruise itself so be sure to check before you go also, cruising days and sailing times can vary from ship to ship, even within the same cruise lines so be to check that too.
Victory Casino Cruises
, now cruising from Port Canaveral
, is a five hour cruise that offers slots Craps, Roulette, Blackjack, EZ Bac, 3-Card Poker, Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em, and Sports Book bets so you can bet on your favorite sports.
The Big M Casino
sails from Moss Marina next to Snug Harbor on Fort Myers Beach
Greyhound racing has long been a favorite here in Florida. Greyhounds were bred to hunt by outrunning their prey. They can reach 45 mph when they run and average 30 mph for distances up to a mile so you might say racing is inbred into their personalities.
A trip to the dog tracks in this day and age can mean plush restaurants; well run bars and private boxes, depending where you go. The dog race starts when the Greyhounds are released out of a starting gate and chase after a mechanized rabbit, the first dog over the finish line wins, it's that simple. Many race tracks also have slot machines, video gaming machines and poker rooms many featuring Texas Hold'em, 7-card stud, hi-limit poker, Omaha and much more. These poker rooms also host a variety of tournaments and special events. They have big screen TV's all over their facilities and simulcast many events such as Jai Alai, thoroughbred horse and harness racing betting is available on all events.
Mardi Gras Racetrak and Gaming Center
has live dog racing part of the year, simulcasts dog, thoroughbred and harness races all year. They offer slots, video poker and their poker room is open 24 hours. Located between Miami
and Ft. Lauderdale
, admission is free, if you'd like to valet park there is a small fee.
The Daytona Beach Kennel Club and Poker Room
is located in Daytona Beach
near the International Speedway. They have live Greyhound racing and simulcast Greyhound, thoroughbred and harness racing along with Jai-Alai. They also have a poker room that is open seven days a week.
in St. Petersburg
claims to be the world's oldest continuously operating greyhound track. It is opened part of the year for live dog racing and simulcast dog racing, jai-alai and other sports for betting the rest of the year. It has a poker room that is open 7 days a week and hosts tournament play.
Melbourne Greyhound Park and Club 52
near Cocoa Beach
offers greyhound racing action, and simulcast of thoroughbred horses, harness racing, and Jai-Alai they also have Las Vegas style poker on 45 tables.
Jefferson County Kennel Club
in Monticello is just minutes from the state line and attracts patrons from all over North Florida and South Georgia. They are open year round and offer live races and a variety of simulcast events. They have a poker room with many games and weekly tournaments.
Orange Park Kennel Club
in Orange Park, the Best Bet at St. Johns Greyhound Park, Jacksonville and the Jacksonville Kennel Club, Jacksonville are all affiliated clubs in the Jacksonville
area. They offer live and simulcast dog racing and sporting events via live satellite.
Orlando Kennel Club
is located in Seminole County, in Sanford and offers year round live greyhound racing with both matinee and evening performances near the Orlando Attractions
area. They also offer simulcasts of greyhound, thoroughbred and harness races from around the country all week long. They have free parking and free general admission however there is an small entry fee. The Sanford-Orlando Kennel Club has hosted championship greyhound racing for over 70 years, it opened in 1935.
More Dog Tracks
Naples/Ft. Myers Greyhound Track in Bonita Springs
Ebro Greyhound Park in Ebro
Palm Beach Kennel Club in West Palm Beach
Flagler Greyhound Track in Miami
Tampa Greyhound Track
For those who like to 'play the ponies' Florida has two options straight thoroughbred racing or harness racing. Some tracks have both, some one or the other, most tracks have Jai Alia, dog racing and other sports simulcast on big screen TV's throughout the facilities. Some have poker rooms with table games and tournaments. They have everything from fine dining restaurants to food courts.
The Isle at Pompano Park touts itself as the "Winter Capital of Harness Racing". They feature live harness racing, slots, video poker and simulcast harness and thoroughbred racing as well as Jai Alai. They are open seven days a week, except Thanksgiving and Christmas and have free valet parking.
More Horse Racing Tracks
Gulfstream Park Racing & Casino in Hallandale
Calder Race Course in Miami
Tampa Bay Downs in Oldsmar
Hialeah Park in Miami
Another popular sport here in Florida is Jai Alai. Jai Alai, the world's fastest sport, originated in Spain and is played on a three-walled court called a fronton. It's played with either single or double teams who hurl a hard rubber ball at a wall at speeds up to 150 miles per hour using a wicker basket that is attached to the player's arm. It's very fast paced and exciting to watch, the athletes who play it are very agile and quick.
Most Jai-Alai frontons have poker rooms, with tournaments, simulcasts of thoroughbreds and harness horse racing and dog racing, places to eat and get drinks and of course bet.
Dania Jai-Alai in Dania Beach is opened 7 days a week and touts the most comfortable, convenient, and friendly poker rooms in South Florida. They have everyday tournaments and no-limit Texas Hold'em. They simulcast from all the top tracks in the country, plus Australia and Canadian.
More Jai Alai Frontons
Fort Pierce Jai-Alai
Adult Electronic Gaming Rooms
Many communities in Florida also have Adult Gaming rooms that have mostly video gaming machines with winnings paid out in gift cards; call ahead and have one of the locals save you a seat. Certain machines are legal and this is subject to change so be sure to check the laws in the area you are headed to before you go.
So when you're heading to Florida be sure to save up your nickels and quarters, practice your poker face, brush up on your gaming strategy and don't forget your sea legs. Good Luck and Have Fun!
By Beverly Martinez-Collins – PlacesAroundFlorida.com
Gambling in Florida
Gambling venues and games come and go frequently. The State of Florida regulates all gambling in Florida. Laws related to gambling are many times a matter of dispute between the State of Florida and businesses offering gaming. In most cases the disputes are over which games can be played and how winnings are paid.