10 Best Casinos in Cincinnati to Win Big (besides Hard Rock)

March 22, 2022
Author : Laura Williams
Photo by Kaysha on Unsplash

Want to see how lucky you are with Blackjack or if today is your day to get a Jackpot? Cincinnati casinos offer a variety of games and entertainment options. You can find racinos and casinos in Cincinnati that have all of your favorite games, including slots, table games, and poker. In addition to gaming, casinos in this part of Ohio also have restaurants, bars, hotels, and nightclubs. Some casinos even have spas, shops, and a real golf course.

If you’re looking for the best casino to have some fun, you’re sure to find one that’s right for you on our ultimate list of 10 Best Casinos in Cincinnati. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and start spinning!

Best Cincinnati Casinos Full List

  1. Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati – Best Cincinnati casino overall
  2. Newport racing & gaming – Locals’ choice for spinning 
  3. Belterra Park Gaming & Racing – Best in-town racing park

Casinos near Cincinnati 

  1. Hollywood Casino & Hotel Lawrenceburg
  2. Belterra Casino Resort – Best Vegas-style casino near Cincinnati
  3. Rising Star Casino & Resort
  4. Ruggles Club – Best player for pro pokers & tournaments
  5. Hollywood Casino Dayton
  6. Hollywood Casino Columbus – the largest poker room in Ohio
  7. Miami Valley Gaming

Closed casinos in Cincinnati 

  1. Horseshoe Casino (later became Jack Casino)
  2. Jack’s Casino Cincinnati (now Hard Rock Casino) 

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Cincinnati Casinos (Inside the city)

#1 Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati

Photo by Hard Rock Casino 

  • Games: 100 table games, 1600 slot machines, bar-top video poker, and live table games in the smoking patio, electronic table games, and a poker room.
  • Dining: Hard Rock Cafe, Starbucks, YOUYU restaurant, Brick’D Pizza, Noodle 8, Council Oak steaks, and seafood.
  • Bar & Lounge: Hard Rock Center Bar is open till 2:30 AM to have cocktails or watch games.
  • Hotel: no
  • Entertainment: The Hard Rock Cincinnati Event Center for rock music concerts and large-scale events, performance at The Hard Rock Cafe every Friday and Saturday night. Shopping accessories, T-shirts, souvenirs at Rock Shop.
  • Location: 1000 Broadway St
  • Official website: www.hardrockcasinocincinnati.com 

Hard Rock Casino is probably the most famous and biggest casino in Cincinnati, formerly known as Jack Cincinnati Casino and Horseshoe Cincinnati Casino but today fully rebranded. 100,000 sq feet of favorite games of all gamblers, from slots to poker, are waiting for you to try your chances to win big!

Hard Rock Casino offers an exclusive loyalty program called Hard Rock Wild Card Rewards. With this card, you have access to free parking and extra perks while playing. The more you play, the more chances to win you have and the higher your membership status gets.

How much is the jackpot? In recent months lucky players won from $5,000 to $32,000!

5 Hotels near Hard Rock Casino Cincinnati

If you’re coming for a couple of days in Cincinnati and you would like to play poker or gamble in Hard Rock Casino, you may need to find a hotel, as this casino does not have one. In fact, Hard Rock casino is next to so many attractions and sites in Cincinnati, like parks, museums, biking trails, nice bridges, that we do recommend you to extend your stay and just walk around! As Hard Rock Casino is right in the city business center, there are plenty of accommodation options nearby:

  1. Kids-friendly 3-star hotel Holiday Inn & Suites Cincinnati Downtown is just a 7-min walk from the casino. Rates can change, but when we checked it was from $217.55.
  2. Residence Inn by Marriott. This is also a 3-star hotel, 15-min walk from the casino. Rates start from $199 per night. 
  3. The Westin Cincinnati (by Marriott) – a 4-star hotel in the middle of the business district, 16 min walk from Hard Rock casino. Around $180-190 per night. Rates may change, please double-check.
  4. Hilton Cincinnati Residence Plaza is a 4-star hotel in an art deco style property, 18-min walk away from the casino. But they offer a free casino shuttle. Rates per night start from $195. 
  5. 21c Museum Hotel Cincinnati – a 4-star hotel and contemporary art museum in one place. One of the top hotels in the Midwest. Rates start from $249/night. 
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Need more options? Check out our Ultimate Accomodation Guide for Cincinnati, we are sure you can find something for your family needs and budget among our 27 selected options. 

#2 Newport Racing & Gaming Cincinnati Casino

Photo from Newport Racing & Gaming official website

  • Games: slot machines, simulcast horse racing wagering
  • Dining: yes, Bar & Grill place – Smiley’s Bar & Grille
  • Hotel: No, this casino is located inside the city.
  • Bar & Lounge: Smiley’s Bar & Grille
  • Entertainment: Free live music acts.
  • Location: 1723 Monmouth St, Newport
  • Official website: https://www.newportrg.com/ 

Newport Casino is one of locals’ favorite gambling site that comes with some free games and promotions, nice service and friendly staff, and an excitement to win some money! Keep in mind, there is no live poker in this casino, only slots, and racing.

How much can I win? You can join the Jackpot winners gallery and grab from $2,000 to $30,000+!

#3 Belterra Park Casino (Belterra Park Gaming) & Racing

Aerial view of Belterra Park, (c) 1800topsite.com

  • Games: 1,200 games
  • Dining options: yes, Burger Brothers, Stadium Sports Bar & Grill, Chef’s Table at Favorites
  • Bar & Lounge: exclusive VIP club Club 38, Stadium Sports Bar & Grill
  • Hotel: no
  • Entertainment: live racing, outdoor racing, simulcast action
  • Location: 6301 Kellogg Rd
  • Official website: https://www.belterrapark.com/ 

Belterra Park is maybe the oldest entertainment center in Cincinnati, right on Kellogg Rd, east of Downtown Cincinnati. It all started with River Downs horse track and people watching and gambling on horse racing. Today, it is a 48 sq ft real casino combined with a race track, or racino, with your favorite slots to try your luck.

Don’t want to sit indoors? Enjoy the view on the racing track from the outside smoking terrace with slot machines! Keep playing and relaxing.

How much can I win in Belterra Park? Recently there were more than 1,000 jackpots and the biggest was almost $3,000,000!

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Casinos near Cincinnati, OHIO

#4 Hollywood Casino Lawrenceburg & Hotel

Photo from Dearborn County Visitor Center

  • Games: 1200+ slots, including ​​video slots, reel slots, and progressive slots, 62 table games, 30 electronic table games to play Craps, Roulette, Blackjack, Mini-Bacc, video poker, live poker room, bets on sport.
  • Dining: four restaurants (The Eatery by Fabio Viviani, A-list restaurant Final Cut Steakhouse, Barstool Sportsbook & Restaurant, breakfast place Hollywood and Grind
  • Hotel: yes, casino Hotel Lawrenceburg
  • Bar & Lounge: Barstool Sportsbook & Restaurant.
  • Entertainment: live events every Friday and Saturday, Night club “Boogie Nights” with the 70s and 80s dance parties, and an event center.
  • How far from Cincinnati: 20 min drive
  • Official website: https://www.hollywoodindiana.com/ 

Hollywood Casino in Lawrenceburg is a Vegas-style casino hotel with 6 restaurants, a nightclub, and live entertainment just 20-min away from Cincinnati city center. All slot machines are new and operational, and you get access to a wide variety of games in a spacious, modern, and comfortable first-class casino. 

Hollywood Casino has a very convenient spacing: there are two levels, one for non-smoking guests and one for smokers. The interiors of the casino, even the bathrooms, are fancy and stylish, offering the real Hollywood vibe. Perfect place to have fun with friends or loved ones!

#5 Hollywood Casino Columbus – the largest poker room in Ohio

  • Games: 2,200 slots, 100 live table games, poker room
  • Dining options: five restaurants, 4-star steakhouse Final Cut, Asian restaurant Zen noodle, OH sports bar
  • Bar & Lounge: OH sports bar
  • Hotel: no
  • Entertainment: free events every weekend 
  • How far from Cincinnati: 2-hour drive
  • Official website: https://www.hollywoodcolumbus.com/

The Columbus branch of Hollywood casinos offers more games and gets way more visitors and players every day. 24/7 gaming slots, table games, and the biggest poker room in the state are open to the public.

The restaurants are great, especially the OH sports bar, the interiors are Vegas-style and promise a very unique gaming experience but the outside looks pretty simple. And the games are so various that you will most definitely find something for yourself. 

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The casino has a separate smoking area with some games as well. But the gem of this place is the largest Ohio poker room for players of all levels.

#6 Belterra Casino Resort (Florence, Indiana)

Belterra Casino Resort photo by Leonardo

  • Games: 700 games
  • Dining options: fine dining at 19 Steak & Seafood, the casual menu at Stadium Sports Bar & Grill, Bel-Bistro, Out of Bounds Bar & Grill, snacks at Nosh, 
  • Bar & Lounge: Lobby bar (can be closed, please double-check before visiting), Stadium Sports Bar & Grill, VIP Club 38.
  • Hotel: yes, 600 luxurious rooms with a river view.
  • Entertainment: live racing, outdoor racing, simulcast action
  • How far from Cincinnati: 60 min drive
  • Official website: https://www.belterracasino.com/ 

Do not confuse Belterra Park with Belterra Casino Resort in Florence, Indiana. Both casinos are operated by the same company – Boyd Gaming, but the Belterra Casino Resort is a huge riverboat casino with its own hotel, nestled right on the Ohio River, four restaurants and bar, an indulgent spa, pools, concert hall, shopping center, and a golf course for a truly unique and luxurious experience. 

It is only a 1-hour drive from Cincinnati to a fun getaway.

#7 Rising Star Casino Resort – Rising Sun

Photo from Rising Star Casino & Resort official website

  • Games: slots, including reels, video poker, and the latest video slots – all denominations and types. Table games, progressive games, and sportsbook
  • Dining options: Ben’s Bistro buffet restaurant, fine-dining steakhouse Wellington’s, Jack’s deli, and a market.
  • Bar & Lounge: Pub and a coffee bar.
  • Hotel: 3-star riverside hotel, 294 rooms + RV park
  • Entertainment: the Links golf course and live entertainment, indoor pool, hot tub, sauna, and a fitness center, two separate event centers with free events. 
  • How far from Cincinnati: 45 min drive, additionally they have a ferry to Rabbit Hash
  • Official website: http://www.risingstarcasino.com/ 

If you’re looking for a modern casino with all the latest games and progressive games, Rising Star is the place to shine. You can play video poker, spin, join table games or bet on sports. After a long tiring day, you can stay at the resort and enjoy their indoor pool, sauna, and hot tub as well as have a juicy steak for dinner or watch games in the pub!

If you’re playing some progressive games at Rising Star and you have been dealt with Ryal Flash and you’ve made a $1 progressive wager, you will win 100% of the jackpot!

If you don’t feel like gambling the next day, play golf at the true Scottish links-style Links golf course or watch movies in your room.

Friendly warning: some guests report that not all rooms are in perfect condition. Do check before you check-in. Alternatively, bring your RV and stay in Rising Star’s spacious RV park with a grill, private bathrooms, and convenience space, along with good WI-FI.

How much can I win? Just recently weekly jackpots averaged at $268,000! 

#8 Miami Valley Gaming

Photo from official Miami Valley Gaming LinkedIn profile

  • Games: 1800 slot games, harness racing track with 1,000-seats.
  • Dining options: yes, Trifecta Eatery, Cin City Sea & Steak, 
  • Bar & Lounge: Center bar.
  • Hotel: No
  • Entertainment: Center bar with live entertainment every Friday and Saturday. The bar has a dance floor too.
  • How far from Cincinnati: 30-40 min drive
  • Official website: https://miamivalleygaming.com/ 

Miami Valley Gaming is open 24/7 for gamblers. This Casino features slot games, dining, and recreational options, along with a racing track. There is no Vegas-style poker room or table games and yet this place is normally packed!

Yet, the dining is not the greatest, people don’t really praise the restaurant at Miami Valley Casino, but they host some food events too! If you are lucky and there is no crowd, it can be fun. 

Overall it is quite ordinary slot gaming and may turn out like a disappointing trip from Cincinnati. 

#9 Ruggles Blue Poker Club 

This photo from the official Ruggles Blue webpage is so good that we couldn’t help sharing it!

  • Games: a variety of Texas Holdem
  • Dining options: just snacks and drinks, no restaurant or anything like that
  • Bar & Lounge: No
  • Hotel: No
  • Entertainment: Tournaments and live games 
  • How far from Cincinnati: 25 min drive, Union Centre Pavilion Drive, West Chester Township
  • Official website: https://www.rugglesclub.com/blue 
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Ruggles Blue is a social poker club open to the public. The membership is absolutely free and you can come and play anytime from 17:30 to 4 am with your friends or complete strangers. You only pay for as many hours as you want to spend in the club. 

It’s a very simple club, nothing fancy, just spacious enough for poker tables, and the tables and chairs themselves are super comfy for long gaming sessions. All games are rake-free.

The club also hosts tournaments and broadcasts live poker games. You can participate in a tournament yourself to try your luck 😉

It’s a perfect place for serious players and real poker fans who seek smart opponents, knowledgeable dealers, and a quiet place to master poker. 

#10 Hollywood Gaming at Dayton Raceway

Photot from Hollywood Gaming Dayton official website

  • Games: 1000 slot machines and horse racing, 53-seat simulcast theater
  • Dining options: yes, indoor restaurants 
  • Bar & Lounge: sports bar, exterior smoking area
  • Hotel: no
  • Entertainment: outdoor concerts, entertainment lounge with a stage
  • How far from Cincinnati: 1-hour drive, the casino is in Dayton
  • Official website: https://www.hollywooddaytonraceway.com/    

A very simple casino with only slot machines and outdoor racing and event space. You won’t find table games, blackjack, or live poker here, but still can have an hour or so of fun! 

Probably not worth driving all the way from Cincinnati only for spinning, but the visit can be combined with some other activities, like watching and betting on horse racing, and in that case will be very enjoyable, as still, Hollywood venues are usually very well equipped, have good staff and cool games. 

CLOSED Cincinnati Casinos 

Cincinnati OH once had more gaming options, but unfortunately, some of them are now permanently closed, such as:

  • Horseshoe Cincinnati – opened in 2013 Horseshoe casino was among the last approved casinos in the state. In 2016, the casino was sold and rebranded under a new name – Jack Casino. 
  • Jack Cincinnati Casino.

What happened to Jack’s casino in Cincinnati?

Rebranded Horseshoe casino became Jack Casino in 2016, but didn’t stay open for long, and in 2019 the property was purchased by Hard Rock. So, today’s Hard Rock Casino was formerly Jack and Horseshoe Casinos. Jack Entertainment has only Jack Casino in Cleveland now.

Cincinnati Casinos FAQ

Where are the casinos in Cincinnati?

The 3 casinos in Cincinnati are located in the heart of the city. You can find Balterra in the downtown area, near the riverfront, Newport Gaming in Newport, and the Hard Rock Casino on 1000 Broadway Street. However, there are more gaming options and entertainment if you are willing to drive 20-40 min. and combine casino visits with golf or spa. In that case, check out Hollywood Casino and Belterra Casino Resort to have a true Vegas-style experience.

How many casinos Cincinnati has?

As of right now, there are ten casinos in Cincinnati and nearby areas if you’re willing to drive a little bit. However, that number is likely to change shortly, as more casinos continue to open up in the area. 

How old should I be to enter the casinos in Cincinnati?

According to the USA legislation, guests must be 21 or older to enter a casino facility and play a game. 

What if my close ones or myself have problem gambling?

To get some help please call 1-800-589-9966 or visit org.ohio.gov. It is an online platform of the Ohio for Responsible Gambling initiative and they share tips on responsible playing, useful resources, and contacts of where you can find relevant treatment. You are not alone, there are people ready to help.