Updated, November 2015
I am a relatively frequent visitor to the Empire Casino
(or Casino At The Empire
to give it it's proper title!) and it's one of my favourites. OK, so no UK casino
will compare to Vegas but as casinos over here go, Empire is decent. And owned by London
Clubs International who also own another casino I frequent regularly and have reviewed here,
the Rendezvous Casino in Brighton
The Empire doesn't have an online casino right now but most of the games are available
to play online (generally with better payout settings too): roulette and table games can be played on sites like
while slots like
, Kitty Glitter
and Pharaohs Fortune
are all available on
There is a good-sized gaming floor downstairs and a mezzanine area with slots and electronic gaming
machines plus a very smart and sizeable bar, re-developed in 2015 to gear up for sports fans with several TV screens of all sizes. There is a second bar on the gaming floor downstairs too and
quite often, masseuses to help you de-stress (for a price!). There are two cashiers, one up by the
slots, one down but the upstairs one is only open at busy times.
And busy it can get, attracting all types from the quiet pensioner to the annoying chav! It compares
favourably in this regard to the quieter and more opulent Palm Beach Casino
over in Mayfair which I felt was a tad too
posh but perhaps doesn't quite achieve the
ambience that Barracuda casino
(also in Mayfair) does.
Generally they are a good and pleasant crowd when I have been in there (except once when a drunk guy
was harassing slots players - he soon got thrown out but that's one issue with being so central and
having an open-door policy).
Like most UK casinos now, anyone can walk in off the street although unlike the nearby
Grosvenor Casino in Piccadilly
you don't *have* to produce photo ID at
the Empire Casino unless you want a membership/loyalty card. There is a cloakroom on the way in (smoking outside the front only)
and a reception desk. The staff are generally very friendly although the waitresses can
vary. Non-alcoholic drinks are free while you are playing. I don't drink alcohol so can't vouch for whether they
are free but I suspect not.
I'd guess there are around 15-20 tables downstairs and the licence-restricting 20 slots upstairs
plus another 30 or so electronic gaming machines (roulette mainly). I actually prefer the Empire's gaming machine
layout to it's closest competitor, The Hippodrome Casino
and what with the
extra 20 games downstairs (see later in this review
) it's a decent location for slot gamers.
As of November 2015
, the slots at Empire include a couple of Cleopatra
machines in "Fort Knox" progressive format and
, a few IGT mult-game machines, a couple of
Atronic's Diversity slots (multi-game) and several Novomatic Gaminators, including 4 of the new Novomatic VIP multi-game machines with the "experience seats and wall-mounted screens. There is no sign of the old Rainbow Riches slot
Novomatic Gaminator fans will also appreciate the "slots lounge" downstairs which is really a separate casino called Napoleans
although it is now just an extension to Empire. Incidentally, Novomatic games are notoriously volatile so you
might find the Novomatic game volatility chart
a useful read!
has more info on many of the slot machines found at Casino At The Empire
while a few of these, including Pharaohs Fortune, Cleopatra and Rainbow Riches can be played for free on
the website Games & Slot Machines
in your browser.
A UK casino licence currently stipulates a maximum of 20 slot machines allowed on the premises which is obviously
restrictive, especially for a casino like Empire in the hub of the West End (Leicester Square) but they
had a cunning plan. As previously alluded to, Empire bought a second licence for a small casino downstairs and kinda
merged it, although it's a seperate entity and has a seperate (internal) entrance. So, 20 more slots
in there and quieter too. Plus a poker room! Only one casino I know of in London has more games
than the Empire Casino and that is Aspers Casino in Stratford
one of the new licences and thus, 150 slot games + 40 gaming tables. But it's a trek (worth taking if you like slots).
Empire Casino, London
Oct 31st, 2012
My favourite London casino and friendly too.
Perfectly situated on Leicester Square's northern edge, the Empire
is a very nicely laid out casino from LCI with friendly staff and good service. For a UK casino
it's a good size but because of it's location it gets very busy at times (Upd. Apr 2012)