Review written by Sophie Couard, on March 15, 2016.
Oostende is a cosmopolitan harbour-town in Belgium and located on the shore of the North Sea. It is famous for being a holiday resort for privileged British tourists, and it is sometimes called "The queen of the beaches" or "the most British town." Every year during the summer, the town is visited by many tourists from the UK, but also from other countries from across the continent. When you are there, you will have to admit that the beaches and sand dunes are beautiful, and the town has a lot to offer with regards to cultural heritage, for example the museums and churches Sint-Petrus-en-Pauluskerk and Onze-Lieve-Vrouw-ter-Duinenkerk are simply beautiful.
The town also features one of the most famous gambling establishments in Belgium. The Casino Kursaal Oostende was built in 1953 and designed by architect Leon Stijnen. Today, it is owned by the Partouche group.
Let us now find out what the casino has to offer.
The biggest game selection at the coast of Belgium
The games room has a friendly and festive atmosphere, and invites you to enjoy a fantastic game selection. The casino is over 2,000 m² large and has a relatively standard decor in different shades of red. To enter the casino you have to be an adult (be at least 21 years, as this is the Belgian law), and present a valid identity document.
The slot machines
The slot machine room is open every day from 9 am to 7 am. You can find over 200 devices accepting bets from 1 cent. This is surely the largest selection at the Belgian coast! You can play at:
- traditional mechanical slot machines,
- modern video slot machines,
- games with progressive jackpots,
- video poker games,
- an electronic roulette with bets from €0.50.
The table games
The traditional table games at the Casino Kursaal Oostende are available every day from 3 pm to 5 am. There are 20 tables with:
- stud poker.
There is also a poker room available in the establishment. The room is a very special place and offers an interesting program that is sure to make all poker fans happy. You can play cash games, tournaments and sit'n'go games in different variants, such as:
- texas hold'em no limit,
- omaha pot limit.
Relaxing between the games
In addition to the nice games room the Casino Kursaal Oostende also offers other services to their visitors. There is a bar, a restaurant and the Kursaal for other events. It is a very convenient place for entertainment, dining or to enjoy a nice glass of wine or a cocktail.
You can either relax between the games or spend a festive evening with friends or your partner at the Baccara Bar. The bar is open every day from 3 pm to 7 am in the morning. You can find virtually everything on the menu, from beers, coffees or trendy cocktails, there is a large selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages available on the menu. The menu even features some smaller snacks, such as:
- different toasts,
- several pizzas,
- some cold tapas,
- croque monsieur.
Those who wish to have a more substantial meal can visit the Fortuna Restaurant in the afternoon and evening. The atmosphere is warm and friendly, and the restaurant is open Sunday to Thursday form 2.30 pm to 11 pm, and until midnight on Friday and Saturday. The menu is more traditional and features a variety of dishes, such as:
- a selection of cold cuts, smoked salmon, or cheese croquettes as starters,
- a sirloin steak cooked in chauron sauce, a burger, or lobster in a slightly spicy sauce with cherry tomatoes as main courses,
- a rich Belgian chocolate with forest fruits and vanilla ice cream, a cheese cake with forest fruit jam, or a Dame Blanche dessert with chocolate sauce as desserts.
The word Kursaal derives from the German word for treatment room, and such a room was often built as a recreational room in spas. At this establishment, it is built around a central hall, and includes a ballroom, a theatre, a games room and several restaurants.
The Kursaal in Oostende has:
- a theatre,
- a nightclub (Krush Club),
- two bars (Lounge and Agua del Mar),
- a gourmet restaurant (Ostend Queen).
Unfortunately, the establishment does not have a hotel. If you want to stay in the area you will have to look elsewhere, which is not a big problem, as the city has many hotels. For example, in the vicinity of 1 km from the casino you can find:
- the Andromeda Hotel from €110 per night,
- the Hôtel Die Prince from €71 per night,
- the Leopold Hôtel Ostend from €64 per night,
- the Mercure Oostende from €69 per night.
In short, Casino Kursaal in Oostende is a great establishment. You have many options for entertainment, partying, seeing a show, dining, drinking and playing the games at the casino.
The casino is also very nice, as the game selection is the largest in the entire region. However, the selection of tables games could be a little bit better. But this did not stop the casino from becoming one of the most popular in Belgium, and the great reputation is well-deserved.
By car : Motorway A10 (E40).
By train : Ostende train station.
Slot machines : every day from 9 am to 7 am.
Table games : every day from 3 pm to 5 am.