The biggest land-based casinos in New Zealand

We will guide you through the best five land-based casinos in New Zealand by looking at what they offer. 

For every casino we’ll start off with where it is located, when it was built, and how large it is. 

We will then focus on how many pokie machines you can use, as well as how many table games are offered.

Land-based casinos in New Zealand
Here’s where you need to visit to play at New Zealand’s land-based casinos.

1. Christchurch Casino – Christchurch

Christchurch Casino, which is owned by Skyline Entertainment, opened in 1994. An interesting fact about this casino is that it hosts the New Zealand Poker Championships

Christchurch Casino
Welcome to Christchurch Casino, New Zealand’s oldest land-based casino!
Games galore!
Christchurch Casino is famous for its 500 pokie machines. If you love playing these games, may we suggest visiting StreamBetz which has over 6,000 games.

2. Grand Casino Dunedin – Dunedin

Grand Casino Dunedin is home to an immersive warm atmosphere, state of the art gaming equipment, and top-quality customer care.

Grand Casino Dunedin
Grand Casino Dunedin is one of New Zealand’s best when it comes to land-based casino gaming.
Looking for a reputable and trustworthy casino?
Grand Casino Dunedin has quite the reputation of a casino you can trust. If you’re looking for a similar casino online, may we suggest LeoVegas.

3. SkyCity Auckland – Auckland

SkyCity Auckland is a casino and entertainment complex in Auckland’s central business district.  At the base of Sky Tower, this was the second casino to be built in New Zealand, and is Auckland’s only casino.

Can’t get to this casino? We’ve got you sorted!
If this casino is too far for you to get there, you can enjoy playing casino games at 1ClickWin.

4. SkyCity Queenstown – Queenstown

The casino, which opened on 7 December 2000 was the fourth casino to do so in New Zealand. Owned by SkyCity Entertainment Group, this casino has eight gaming tables in its main casino, with another four in its VIP section.

SkyCity Queenstown
Queenstown welcomes all casino gamers to its SkyCity Queenstown Casino!
VIP for a VIP like yourself!
VIPs can also be found on online casinos such as Biamobet, which boasts a fantastic VIP program.

5. SkyCity Hamilton – Hamilton

This casino, which opened in 2002, is located at the centre of the city of Hamilton.

SkyCity Hamilton is also known for its excellent live entertainment, wide range of options for dining, as well as a ten-lane bowling alley.

Impossible for you to make it? Go online!
If you cannot make your way to this casino, you can always check out BlueChip Casino for some exciting bonuses.
Did you know?
Christchurch Casino’s Gran Café is one of its best features. In 2011 it was the winner of the Canterbury Architecture Awards.

Land-based casinos vs online casinos

While in land-based casinos you can immerse yourself in the sounds and get caught up in the magic of casino games, online casinos offer this virtually. Although these are both types of casinos, there are a number of differences and goodies that they offer.

Online slots and slot machines

When playing at a pokie machine, you will find that these predate pokies in online casinos. Another noticeable difference is that pokies in land-based casinos can have a lower RTP than online pokies.

While the average RTP for online pokies is between 95 and 97%, the RTP for land-based casino average is 75%.

Table games

In land-based casinos you can go from table to table, chat with other players, and experience the thrill of casino gaming first-hand. You won’t be able to talk to the dealer and other players at these tables when visiting online Roulette casinos, online Baccarat casinos, online Poker casinos, and online Craps casinos.

For online casinos you’d have to play Live Casino games to get close to that feeling, and even then it’s simply not the same!


While joining an online casino rewards you with an exquisite casino bonus such as free spins, welcome bonuses, no deposit bonuses, reload bonuses, and VIP bonuses, this is not the case with land-based casinos.

Land-based casinosOnline casinos
Enhanced gaming atmosphereBonuses available
Interactive and hands-on play24/7 gameplay
More time to think before your next moveOn the go gaming
Free online games available to play
Large game selection

While playing at land-based casinos comes with a number of advantages, playing at the best online casinos in New Zealand offers more towards your gaming experience.

If you’re more of a social person, then we highly recommend land-based casinos.

Requirements for land-based casinos to operate legally

All casinos must be in possession of valid gambling licences and operate in line with the law before opening their doors to players.

There are certain strict regulations casinos must adhere to, as well.

Land-based casinos need to have a local gambling licence in order to operate safely.

Did you know? 
Most casinos in New Zealand have an official dress code that players must follow.

History of casinos in New Zealand

All gambling that takes place in New Zealand falls under the Department of Internal Affairs, with all public gambling returning a part of the profits to the community. 

Slot machines, or as New Zealanders call them pokies, were introduced in 1987. Mostly found in bars and in hotels, these machines are operated by charitable foundations, with maximum jackpots being regulated.

Since July 2009, every machine must include Player Information Displays. Their aim is to let players know how long they have been playing for, the amount of money they wagered, as well as give friendly reminders to take a break every now and then.

Situation of land-based casinos in New Zealand now

While land-based casinos are somewhat popular in New Zealand, joining online casinos is far more popular with younger people.

Online casinos allow players to play wherever they are, and to make things even better, these ensure that games are optimised for mobile.

What makes online casinos so popular is how easily accessible these are. Many new casinos are opening their virtual doors much faster than land-based casinos.

With just one click, it is much easier to play on the go when opting for mobile casinos.

For an immersive gaming experience choose land-based!

If you’re a fan of the classics, we recommend choosing land-based casinos.

Although online casinos are growing by the minute, and the choice there seems to be endless, we understand that land-based casinos bring back a certain nostalgia and are fun in their own way.

When choosing land-based (and online) casinos always check that this is a legal and properly-licensed casino.

And don’t forget: have fun and stay safe when playing your favourite casino games.

Frequently asked questions

A land-based casino is a physical casino that has a licence allowing it to provide NZ players with casino games such as Poker, Roulette, and Blackjack.
There are six land-based casinos operating in New Zealand.
New Zealand’s land-based casinos can be found in: Christchurch, Dunedin, Auckland, and Queenstown.
At a land-based casino, you can play in an immersive environment which is interactive and hands-on, and you have more time to think before you make your next move.

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