Researching The Casino De Montreal, A Gourmet Dinner And Some Fireworks

After my lovely cheerful encounter in the Square St. Louis I briefly went back to the resort and then took the subway to the exit at Jean Drapeau Park. You can find just two big islands in the St. Lawrence River: Ile Notre-Dame and Ile Sainte-Helene. I had a ticket for tonight's international fireworks competition which was planning to be held at La Ronde, therefore I needed to go and pick it up at the information counter.

With ticket in hand I made my way back on two buses to get to the Casino de Montreal, the biggest of Quebec's three casinos, run by the Socit des casinos du Quebec, a government agency whose main aims are to create employment, equip the state with world-class tourism infrastructures and generate added income for the state. Although I'm not much of a gambler I wanted to take a look at this complex as it is one of the major draws in Park Jean Drapeau.

I arrived by bus in the cellar of the Casino, entered and dropped off my backpack at the coatcheck. Via a maze of escalators and walks I navigated my way upstairs to the front entrance where Alexandre, one of the customer service specialists in the Casino, was already waiting for me. He was going to provide me with a personalized tour of this expansive complex and provide me with additional information about the Casino's operations.

We went outside and Alexandre informed me the Casino complex contains three buildings: the former France Pavilion, the former Quebec Pavilion, both assembled for Expo 1967, along with the Annex, joining the two buildings. The Quebec Pavilion features top-to-bottom 24 karat gold windows. The gardens surrounding the Casino are offered to Casino patrons and the entire complex is surrounded by the tracks for the Montreal Grand Prix.

Alexandre began to take me through the buildings and clarified the Casino has about 3500 workers, working in three shifts, 24 hours a day. Patrons can purchase a package which includes dinner or enjoy the show by itself.

He then took me through the whole multi storey complex and introduced me to the many games of opportunity available. The Casino de Montreal featues more than 3200 slot machines of different types, 115 gaming tables for Blackjack, Baccarat, Roulette, Keno as well as a number of tournaments. Alexandre explained that several of the slot machines no longer have a mechanical barrel, but that they are video slot machines with the electronic display. The Casino also offers a Royal Ascot electronic horse racing track in addition to a high-limitations gambling space and lounge.

Alexandre clarified that the Quebec government has a monopoly on gambling in the province and the funds return into provincial infrastructure and public services. When we walked through the different buildings he informed me that the Old France Pavilion building features a European design, reminiscent of casinos for example Monte Carlo, that let in sunlight generously. The previous Quebec Pavilion on the other hand has a North American layout with zero daylight. Alexandre indicated that the clientele in the two different buildings is extremely distinct and that individuals have a taste for one or the other form of design.

My skilled guide also trained me that the incidence of gambling dependency visit casino here is really going down and that the Casino de Montreal has specific plans to prevent and cope with gambling addiction. Issue gamblers can join a self-exclusion program that bars them from playing at any Quebec Casino. The Casino's 285 investigators not only monitor and investigate fraud, in addition they ensure that people that are a part of the self-exclusion database tend not to get access to the Casino.

On our walk through his extensive complex Alexandre pointed out an on site division of the Banque Nationale, the single bank in Canada that's open for 24 hours. Here patrons can change money in 16 currencies. A free shuttle bus provides transportation to the Casino from four pick up places in downtown Montreal and makes it simple for out-of-town guests to enjoy a night of betting excitement.

But obviously, a high-intensity activity like betting could make you hungry along with the Casino features five bars and eateries: the Italian Bistro Via Fortuna with incredibly moderately prices, the Buffet La Bonne Carte, L'entre-mise Deli, and the Nuances Gourmet Restaurant. Four bars, La rotonde, Le carr, Le jardin d'hiver and Le cheval round out the hospitality offerings.

The highlight of the evening was yet to come: as it was getting close to 9 pm and I had not eaten dinner yet, I'd have a chance to sample a gourmet meal at the Nuances Restaurant, accentuated by a great sunset and also a glorious view of downtown Montreal across the St. Lawrence River. An outstanding dining experience was anticipating me.