Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About the Montreal Casino

The Zone area of the Montreal casino teaches people how to play the table games on offer.

We have more than our fair share of stunning architecture and exciting nightlife in Montreal, but there’s one place that brings both together and just doesn’t get celebrated enough: the Casino de Montréal. Since its opening all the way back in 1992, the casino has not only brought tourists to the Ile Notre Dame, it has also created thousands of jobs and even more unforgettable memories. Here, we’re going to take a look at the past, present and future of Montreal Casino.

The Very Beginning

Though many of us will only remember the building that the Casino de Montréal exists in as the home of the casino, it actually had another function first. Originally the incredible building housed the Palais des Civilisations, a gallery space that held expositions for artists from across the world. Expo 67, held in 1967 on the Ile Notre Dame, was one of the largest and most important art showcases of the decade. It brought together the governments of more than 120 different countries, each showcasing the most exciting works from their country’s artists. The fact that Expo 67 was to be held in Montreal was met with little excitement by many people at the time. The works that would need to be carried out in order to make the exhibition possible were estimated at more than $250 million, whilst the income would be considerably less. Despite worries, the government pressed on and completed the work at a cost of $283 million. It would come as a wonderful surprise to everyone that Expo 67 would rake in $480 million in tourism revenues and secure Canada a place in the art hall of fame. 

It wouldn’t be until 1992 that the casino would open its doors on the Ile Notre Dame. The Société des casinos du Québec had asked for casinos to be opened in the province and the beautiful buildings of the Palais des Civilisations seemed like the perfect place. A final plaza was built to link all of the buildings together and the casino opened its doors to much fanfare. In its first year, it employed 700 people, which was considered an enormous success, yet in 2019 it employs more than 2500!

For Tourists and Locals Alike

Whether you want to enjoy fries or fine dining, the Montreal Casino has made sure there’s a restaurant for everyone.

Montreal is known as a creative hub for gamers; the makers of We Happy Few have their offices here and it makes sense too. Canadian winters are super cold and holing up with a video game is sometimes the most comforting thing to do! In the case of the Casino de Montréal it was important that not only would the casino be a destination for tourists, but it would be loved by locals too. Ensuring that the casino was easily accessed by free public transport was at the top of the list of priorities and has remained so since its opening. More recent ideas include an area of the casino known as The Zone. Whilst many tourists are visiting the casino because they’re already fans of table games, The Zone aims to encourage people who don’t know how to play yet. They hold regular sessions to allow people to play Blackjack, Poker, and Roulette. Of course, the other element of the Casino de Montréal that brings together tourists and locals alike is the food. Whether you’re after fine dining at Robuchon’s or to slouch back in a comfortable seat with a hearty poutine, the casino offers food options for all.

Pioneers of the Slot Tournament

Despite the fact that online slots games are soaring in popularity at the moment, the Montreal Casino has been trying to keep pace with the online offers that are available. For the past couple of years, Casino de Montréal has been holding slots tournaments that allow players to compete against one another on physical slot machines in order to win the entire prize pool. Fans of these games enjoy the frenetic energy of the casino atmosphere. Others believe that brick-and-mortar casinos will never be able to compete with the deals that online casinos can offer, but innovation like this is what will keep Casino de Montréal alive and thriving.