Macau – The Vegas of the East

When we think casinos, partying, and bright lights, we immediately think of Las Vegas. For me, I now think of Macau!

Macau is an autonomous region attached to China. Macau shares many similarities to Las Vegas in the form of casinos, hotel chains, and a booming nightlife, and is rapidly becoming the go-to place in the East.

TRAVEL

Macau is a perfect compliment to a trip to Hong Kong.  Hong Kong has the sightseeing, shopping and overall city vibe, whilst Macau provides the entertainment and partying!

The easiest way to get to Macau from Hong Kong is with a ferry. Cotai Water Jet and Turbo Jet are two very reputable companies who offer this service. Ferries leave from the Hong Kong Macau ferry terminal, and a one way trip is approximately 55 minutes.

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Cotai Water Jet Ferry. Source: Cotai Water Jet

ACCOMMODATION

As with Vegas, Macau is home to many popular hotel chains such as the Venetian, Hard Rock, Wynn, Four Seasons, MGM, St. Regis, and many more. Our hotel of choice was The Venetian. WOW! This was probably the best hotel that I’ve stayed at! The 5 star property boasts 3000 luxury suites, and the largest casino in the world! Yep! You would have thought that that record belonged to a casino in Vegas, right?!

The hotel rooms were more than satisfactory, and the hotel offers many entertainment, dining and shopping options.

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Exquisite Venetian Decor
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Royale Suite
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Gondola Ride

THINGS TO DO

Cotai Strip

As with the Vegas Strip, the Cotai Strip is the main street in Macau, lined with major hotel names, casinos, and clubs.

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The Cotai Strip at night. Source: Sands Retail
Gambling

The top casinos include the Wynn Macau, the Venetian Macau, and the Grand Lisboa.

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Dragon show at the Wynn Macau’s Casino. Source: Hulutrip
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Casino at the Venetian Macau. Source: Casino News Daily
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Casino floor at the Grand Lisboa, Macau. Source: Macau Casinos
The Ruins of St Paul’s

The ruins of a 17th-century Portuguese church are located in Santo Antonio, and has been named as the part of the only UNESCO World Heritage site in Macau. The front facade and the grand stone stairs are all that remains of the church, which was built from 1602 to 1640.

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The Ruins of St Paul’s. Source: Alluring World

Although day visits are more convenient, many tourists recommend an evening visit. Free shuttle buses from the Cotai Strip depart every 10min to the Ruins, and the journey is approximately 50min. Entrance to the site is free.

 Macau Tower

At 338m above the ground, visiting the observation deck at the Macau Tower is not for the faint-hearted! The tower is also home to the world’s highest commercial bungee jump at 233m. This bungee is the one thing that I regret not doing in Macau! For those who aren’t as daring, there is a Sky Jump, which is a controlled jump done in a standing position all the way down the tower. The bungee jump costs around US$500 and the sky jump costs around US$370. Visit AJHackett for more information.

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Bungee Jump at the Macau Tower. Source: Business Insider Malaysia
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View from the Macau Tower. Source: TravelSort

 

Senado Square

This paved public square is a popular attraction offering many restaurants and fashion outlets. During the festival period, visitors can enjoy firework displays, and lion and dragon dances. Nearby attractions include Macau Cathedral, Macau Museum, and the Ruins of St Paul’s.

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Senado Square. Source: Jrrny
Nightlife

MGM’s Lion’s Bar is a great choice if you’re looking for live music and a lively crowd. Locals say that it’s the only place to be on a Friday night!

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Lion’s Bar at the MGM Macau. Source: Hulutrip

One bar that I can vouch for is the Bellini Lounge at the Venetian. It was so much fun that we went back for a second night! Live music and an overall chilled atmosphere made this lounge perfect for some down time. The Mai-Tai cocktail was particularly yummy!

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Bellini Lounge at the Venetian Macau. Source: The Venetian Macau

If you’re looking for a bar with character, 38 Lounge is perfect! Perched on the 38th floor of the Altira Hotel, the bar offers stunning views of the city and an extensive drinks list to go with it!

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38 Lounge at the Altira Hotel. Source: World’s Best Bars

Club Cubic at the City of Dreams is a gothic inspired nightclub, which has housed the likes of Hardwell, Afrojack, Chris Brown, Ludacris, DeadMau5, and even PSY! This club is definitely the IT place to be in Macau!

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Gothic decor at Club Cubic. Source: DJOYbeat
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Hardwell at Club Cubic. Source: City of Dreams Macau

The Cotai Arena is a 15000 seater arena based at the Venetian, offering shows and concerts all year round. Ticketing and show information can be found at their website.

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The Cotai Arena transformed into a basketball court. Source: The Venetian Macau

From shopping to gambling to partying and even jumping off a tower, there’s something for everyone in Macau! Next time you’re planning a trip to China or Hong Kong, be sure to check out why Macau is becoming one of the most visited regions in the East.

–  A

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