Macau

Joan loves everything about the Orient so her top pick will always be one of largest casinos in the world, The Venetian Maco hotel and casino in Macau,China. Shop on the Cotai Strip, gamble in the sixth largest casino in the world, sleep in one of the 3,000 luxury suites in the largest building in Asia at the lavish hotel, take a seat and watch the great entertainment and sporting events in Cotai Arena, and taste the best in fine-dining all under the same roof.

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The four gaming areas will take you to another world with themes like Imperial House, Red Dragon, and the Phoenix. Over 3,400 slot machines and 800 gaming tables make for exciting gambling fun. The detail of the ceiling, with a Sistine Chapel look along with the sculptures, the rugs, and the trim in the Colonnade puts the Venetian lobby into a past century. Showstopping entertainment, such as Cirque de Soleil performances six nights a week with gondola rides and serenading gondoliers in both inside and outside canals will entertain you like no other.

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The 350 retail stores in the Grand Canal Shoppes is a duty free shopping dream. The Venetian Macao is the size of 56 football fields with 14 cash poker tables, the new Dragon Phoenix, Three Card Baccarat, Craps, Roulette, Blackjack, Caribbean Stud Poker, the Money Wheel, Fan Tan, and Texas Hold’em. Every hour a random slot player wins the Treasure Hunt for a $1,000 bonus on slot machines like the King of Pop, the Big Pineapple, the Grand Lisboa, and the Dark Knight.

Each hotel suite is split-level with gold leaf and Italian marble bathrooms that are bigger and cheaper than any other casino hotel in the world. The Venetian has more restaurants than any other hotel, resort, and casino combined with choices from Chinese, Western, Asian, Japanese, and fast food with a McDonald’s. Tang Palace sells more than a thousand Gold Award pigeon dishes a day with a delectable flavor, and if you’re looking for authentic dim sum you must try the Imperial House Dim Sum and other delicacies authentically created by local chefs.

Canton showcases the best in Cantonese cuisine and other delicious dishes from across mainland China. The food court is the place to be for a tasting bonanza with restaurants called Glorious BBQ King, Pizza Pizza, Tenka Standing Sushi, and the Hundred Tastes Kitchen.

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It’s an ongoing joke among the five of us that Joan really loves The Venetian for the Shanghainese 456 restaurant and their Shanghai flavors beautifully displayed on your plate. Her go-to favorite is always the spicy and sour soup, sweet and sour pork, Shanghainese donuts, and the stir-fried shrimp.