Play your cards right with Time Out's guide to having a high time at Crown
Drink like a socialite, eat like a king, dress like a pimp – this is how we roll at Crown.
BE RAZZLE-DAZZLED AT THE PALMS
Every time we see the tiered, candlelit tables cascading down towards the stage at the Palms, we feel like Liberace or Barbra Streisand is about to blind us with fur and diamantes. You’re actually as likely to see circus troupe Empire as Babs, but the glitzy glamour of the old-school cabaret joint gives any performance some Vegas razzle. Even Kevin Bloody Wilson’s stand-up. The Palms, Lvl 3.
BOND IT UP AT THE TABLES
It’s got to be poker and blackjack. You have to have black or platinum membership to get into the high-rollers’ Mahogany Room (where the drinks are free, the bets are high and smoking is allowed), but anyone can get onto the $30, $50 and $100 tables in the Maple and Monte Carlo rooms. Get tableside and watch the pros, or take a free Learn to Play tutorial at the West End before opening your wallet. Main Gaming Floor. Daily 24 hours.
SHUCK YOURSELF STUPID AT THE ATLANTIC
Sure, Nobu does a $300 steak, but nothing says “I’m fancy and I know it” like a frocked-up fiesta of oysters, caviar and Champagne, and for that you need the inky depths of the Atlantic. The restaurant proper does incredible seafood, but we like to stick to the oyster and Champagne bar for all the Coffin Bay and Swan Port molluscs we can handle. We love the Den downstairs for cocktails, too. 8 Whiteman St, Southbank 3006. 03 9698 8888. Lunch daily noon-3pm; dinner Mon-Sat 6-11pm; Sun 5.30-11pm.
SPEND YOUR HOUSE DEPOSIT ON A DRINK AT CLUB 23
You can’t ball much harder than at this sultry-looking lounge where they have live jazz, gaming tables, panoramic city views and officially the world’s most expensive cocktail. The Winston is $12,500, but if you want to financially knee-cap yourself with it, do it soon – wealthy kids keep dropping by to do shots of the 1858 Cognac it’s made from. Not that flush? Get a more affordable bottle of Veuve Clicquot for $130, guffaw a lot and you’ll fit right in. Lvl 3, Crown Towers. Thu 6pm-late; Fri 5pm-late; Sat 8pm-late.
Want to wear gold lamé pants, drink a Fruit Tingle that's bigger than your head and hit the bingo tables with Melbourne's retirees? You actually really do.
EAT A BIG BURGER, YO
If you’ve dressed down in your best skank pants for your romp like we did, you’ll feel more at home at the Merrywell burger bar than Silks. And that burger is good – a two-hands-and-a-bibrequired meat, cheese and pickle monster that will keep you fuelled for days. Get some chilli fries while you’re at it. Live the dream. Cnr Clarendon St & Crown Riverside, Southbank 3006. 03 9292 7468.
DRINK GIANT COCKTAILS AT VELVET BAR
We love a good cocktail at Time Out, but sometimes (specifically, when you’re in the middle of the games floor dressed like Grandma Yetta from The Nanny) you want a sugary bucket drink. At Velvet Bar, the fixtures are shiny, the soundtrack is ‘Cotton Eyed Joe’ and a litre of piña colada is just $25. Don’t worry, though, it’s only as boozy as a beer. The rest of Velvet’s menu is normal-sized and the espresso martinis are solid. Main Gaming Floor. Sun-Thu noon-4am; Fri, Sat noon-5am.
GAMBLE LIKE YO’ NANNA
For that true Atlantic City feel you want to hit the pokies – we hear that the spotty carpet conceals a wealth of dropped coins. Or, if you become a Signature Club member (it’s free, innit) you can hit the Palms for free bingo four times daily, Monday to Thursday. Or there’s always War – the most simplistic of the table games where you and the dealer each have a card and the highest face value wins. Yep: that simple.
GET A TICKET TO THE BALL GAME
So, remember 2012’s man-flesh movie, Magic Mike? Well it just so happens that you can head to Fusion nightclub of a Saturday for Princes of the Night – a male revue featuring such titillating dance numbers as ‘Phallus Palace’. Or, if you’re less inclined towards thrusty dancing, few things say rockin’ Saturday like bowling and laser tag at Galactic Circus. Princes of the Night: Fusion Nightclub, Lvl 3. www.princes.com.au. Sat 7pm. $65. Galactic Circus, Crown Entertainment Complex (enter via Whiteman St). Daily 10am-2pm. Free.
Games you don't understand
Baccarat is one of the most queued-for games. Two hands are dealt (the ‘banker’ and the ‘player’ hand) with two or three cards being drawn for each. Any card ten or above is counted as zero and if the two numbers total, say, 15, you count the second digit, so the hand is worth five. You’re gunning for the banker or player hand to be as close to nine as possible, or you can bet on a tie.
Two dice are rolled. You bet on the ‘pass’ or ‘don’t pass’ line. If it’s a seven or 11, pass wins and don’t pass loses immediately. If it’s a two, three or 12, the result is inverted. If they roll anything else, that becomes ‘the point’ and you need them to hit the same value again before they roll a seven to win. Got it? No? Best head to a table. It’s the best game for watching and learning on the fly.