With the opening of Big Daddy Casino in Goa, an offshore casino with ‘no-limits’ tables this is also said to be the biggest in Asia.
As a much loved holiday destination, there is no other place that can beat Goa. With its sandy beaches and laidback lifestyle, it has all the ingredients that make for a relaxing holiday. Goa also happens to be one of the two states (the other being Sikkim) in India where betting is legal. This has developed a chain of casinos across the state and the capital Panjim also has floating casinos that are a favourite with tourists.
I recently had my first experience of a casino when I visited the newest one in Panjim by Golden Globe Hotels Private Limited – Big Daddy moored on the Mandovi River. As I headed to the casino it was dusk and the entire landscape had transformed with twinkling lights that reflected on the water making colourful patterns. The Big Daddy Casino is an offshore casino with ‘no-limits’ tables, and is said to be the biggest and most modern offshore gaming destination in India. In fact the casino itself is a unique blend of gaming and high living with restaurants and children gaming spaces as well. While Las Vegas’ and Macau have been traditionally casino hotspots, Goa is now giving stiff competition to these destinations. The casino is betting big on events and the launch had social media star and multi-millionaire Dan Bilzerian present to coincide with the finals of the India Poker Championship (IPC). Narinder Punj, Chief Visionary Officer and Mentor, Big Daddy Goa, an industry veteran says, “I have been in this business for the last 38 years and I was overseas for over 18 years. I started my career in Baghdad and initially I had no clue what a casino was or how it works but I started work as a dealer and trained in various casino games and worked my way up. I worked across the globe working for Casinos Austria International (Vienna) and sailed the Agean, Mediterranean, Caribbean Seas and Atlantic, Pacific oceans between 1982 and 1987.” Incidentally he has lead the openings of reputed casinos in Eastern Europe, Poland, Russia, Romania, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Egypt, Kenya and Palestinian Authority as well.
Big Daddy Casino is all set to revolutionize the gaming industry and redefine the rules of offshore gaming being equipped with gaming equipment at par with the world and unavailable anywhere in India. The games you can play here include poker, roulette, Indian flush, American Roulette, Black Jack, Baccarat, MangPatta, Andhar Bahar and more. The casino has 110 tables in an area of around 50,000 square feet spread over three decks. There are also 40 slot machines so if you can also try your luck playing virtual games. Level 2 has high stakes gaming and a card room with dedicated Poker and Teen Patti as well. Level 3 has an Invitation only Gaming Zone and has four luxurious premium rooms where guests can relax. “We have several Indian games that are popular with our guests. Andhar Bahar for instance has caught the fancy of a lot of our guests and is very popular in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh,” says Punj.
Big Daddy Casino is a specially commissioned Panamanian vessel called MV Lucky Seven and is operated by Golden Globe Hotels Private Limited. Apart from three levels of gaming, there is a lavish multi-cuisine restaurant, Aish-O-Rum, a bar, a live barbecue area, a sundeck and a variety of entertainment programmes available to guests. There is also a delightful on-site gift shop that retails casino-inspired merchandise, mini-games and memorabilia. ‘Daddy’s Kids’ is a child friendly zone where children can relax and enjoy themselves through movie screenings, a ‘Playstation Arena (PSP)’ and there is also ‘Snooze Zone’ for kids to take rest. If you are looking for a good meal, Hazoor the upscale lounge with a Mid-eastern ambience serves a fine selection of champagnes, fine liqueurs and vintage wines. You can also try some superior quality sheeshas in different flavours and a selection of cigars as well. If you are looking for a Goan experience with a twist check out Big Daddy casino – it’s a fun way to spend a day here.
This story first appeared in Sakal Times dated Nov 18, 2019 here: