Third day in Macau, so after some sightseeing and all, it was time to get down to the tables at Macau’s spanking new casinos. With The Venetian Macau actively promoting its Cotai Strip as a version of the famous Las Vegas Strip, you might be forgiven to think that’s where the gaming action in Macau is. Maybe in 2010 or 2011, but for now, the best place to be at in Macau is actually in the area around Sai Van Lake, where Macau’s business district, heritage district and the original Lisboa is situated at. Several new casinos such as the Starworld by Galaxy Entertainment, Wynn Macau, MGM Grand and the abstract Grand Lisboa are all built around this area. Which is why we chose to explore the casinos in these area. This area is also a good place to have lunch before setting off along Ave. de Almeida Ribeiro to reach the UNESCO World Heritage Site which is Macau’s number one attraction.
But today, the walk focuses on exploring the new casinos of Macau. By staying at Crown Macau, we are actually quite far from much of the gaming action, since the Crown’s gaming floor is small and relatively quiet by Macau’s standards. And the first night’s experience at The Venetian’s gaming floor was really crowded and noisy. Grand Lisboa and Starworld is just like the Venetian while gaming at the Wynn and MGM Grand felt more at ease and comfortable. It seems that locals and Hong Kong-ers prefers the Asian casinos better then. Food is aplenty here from choices of seafood, dim sum, cafetarias, and even Michelin-starred restaurant. With the high rollers gaming crowd from the region, it seems Macau might prove to be a worthy competitor to Hong Kong’s position as a food paradise.
After lunch at one of the numerous cafetarias in the area and trying out our luck at Macau’s various casinos, we had to go for one of Macau’s famous delicacies, which is the Portuguese Egg Tart, a version of the egg tarts one gets during Dim Sum, though a bit charred on the coating, and generally with a thicker and fluffier pastry base. The one many tourists go for is the Lord Stow’s Bakery at the outer edge of Macau in an area termed as Coloane. From The Venetian at Taipa, it’s around MOP 20 for a one way trip via taxi. And if you do go on a public holiday, expect queues at the shop, but you can also get super good and piping hot egg tarts best enjoyed on the spot. Definitely worth a try if you are a lover of egg tarts. Otherwise, one could just get the ones around the Ruins of St Paul’s which is equally good and more convenient. However, people who are keen on visiting the locals should take the chance to visit this quaint town. It’s quiet and still has a lot of those old buildings without the crowds or the skyscrapers looming over it. Best visited in Jun-Aug when the weather is better for walks and the sky usually clearer.
Since it was late in the evening, we went straight back to Crown for a rest and more gaming. I also took this opportunity to capture some architectural shots of Crown Macau! It was also a good chance to try out the Slik tripod I got for my travel photography!