Costa Rica Nightlife Gambling Tico Style

Ready for Costa Rica nightlife, gambling the night away?

This little country, only the size of West Virginia, has over 30 casinos, many in the finest hotels and resorts of Costa Rica. if you are coming for your bachelor party and have already decided to spend some money on the game then know that Costa Rica nightlife for gamblers won’t be as glitzy and the casinos won’t be as large as those in Vegas, Atlantic City, or Monaco but you’ll find many familiar ways to gamble.

Most of the bigger casinos have the typical Vegas-style slot machines and Roulette (called Canasta), Craps, Mini-Baccarat, and various kinds of Poker.

If you’re a gambler, you should be familiar with two exceptions. First, each casino sets its own odds. Second, some games may have a maximum payout (if you’re a bit better you need to find out before plunking down your bet on the roulette wheel).

My advice: to fully enjoy this part of your Costa Rica nightlife, be sure you know the rules.

There are also some popular Costa Rica gambling games uniquely Tico.

Rummy and Tute

One of these is called “Rummy” but don’t let the name fool you. In Costa Rica, it’s a form of Blackjack. Usually played with four decks, you’ll get two cards just like Blackjack and if you beat the dealer without going bust you get even money. So far, so good.

But, here are Tico twists. If you get a Blackjack (a face card and an Ace) or take five cards without busting, it’s still even money. However, if your hand consists of three-of-a-kind (ex. 3-5’s) or a three-card straight (ex. 3-4-5) without going bust you’re paid 3-to-1. And, if you get three sevens or a 6-7-8 combo, you’ll receive a five-to-one payout (because you reached 21).

Better yet, if you get three-of-a-kind or a three-card straight you win EVEN IF YOU GO PAST 21. Now, this is my kind of Costa Rica nightlife, you win when you’re supposed to be losing!

Try it on your next trip to Costa Rica.

Another popular card game is Tute.

After you put up your ante, you’ll be dealt five cards (which only you see) and if you like your hand you can make a bet which must be twice the size of the ante. The game only goes forward if the dealer holds a king or an Ace. If not, you keep your ante.

But if the dealer holds one of these cards and you win, your payout will be this: winning pairs pay even money; two pairs 2 to 1; three of a kind, 3 to 1; a straight, 4 to one; a flush, 5 to one; a full house, 15 to 1; poker, or four-of-a-kind pays 20 to 1; and a straight flush 50 to 1. You can also make a sort of side bet called an “acumulado.”

Most Costa Rica casinos serve free drinks to gamblers and some will even provide free buffets or bring food to your table (this is really Tico hospitality). And, some casinos will give you a little piece of paper with numbers on it. During the course of the day and night, there are periodic “rifas” or drawings that payout if you hold the winning numbers so, for goodness sake, don’t throw away that paper!

Popular Costa Rica Casinos

Did you ever notice that whenever James Bond gambles, he’s surrounded by beautiful women?

When you travel to Costa Rica you’ll have the same kind of Costa Rica nightlife if you want. Costa Rica is pretty free-wheeling and you’ll find lots of beautiful female company, click for more

Here are some casinos where you can indulge your gambling vices and pleasures.

Alajuela (across from San Jose International Airport)

Fiesta Casino


Melia Cariari Hotel & Country Club

Casino Cariari

Hilton Doubletree Cariari

Ciudad Quesada

Lucky San Carlos Casino

El Roble

Caribbean Village Fiesta


Hotel Sierra and Casino


Hotel Flamingo Beach Resort & Jazz Casino

Best Western El Sitio Hotel & Casino

Paradisus Playa Conchal


Fiesta Casino Cacique Heredia

Casino La Condesa, San Rafael de Heredia

La Uruca

Irazú Hotel Best Western & Casino Concorde

Casino San José Palacio

Perez Zeledon

Hotel & Country Club del Sur & Casino del Sur

Playa Herradura

Los Suenos Marriot Golf Resort & Stellaris Casino

Playa Jaco

Hotel Cocal & Casino

Hotel Jaco Fiesta

Barceló Amapola & Jazz Casino

Sonesta Jaco Resort

Playa Manuel Antonio

Casino Hotel Parador

Casino Divisamar

Byblos Resort & Casino

Playa Panama

Premier Fiesta Resort & Spa

Playas del Coco

Flor De Itabo Hotel & Casino Hotel Casino Coco Bay

Casino Best Western Coco Verde


Hotel Yadran & Casino Adriatico

Hotel Tioga


Hotel & Casino Divisamar

Best Western Hotel & Casino Kamuk

San Jose

Balmoral Hotel

Barceló San José Palacio Spa & Casino Club

Casino Jazz at the White House Hotel

Colonial Casino Bar & Restaurant

Del Rey Hotel & Casino del Rey

Fiesta Casino Costa Rica at the Garden Court

Hotel Fiesta

Herradura Resort & Casino

Krystal Quality Hotel

Centro Colon & Casino

Costa Rica Radisson Hotel & Casino Europa

Royal Dutch Hotel & Casino

Casino Hotel Costa Rica Morazán

Casino Hotel Aurola Holiday Inn

Hotel Crowne Plaza Corobicí


Barceló Playa Langosta Resort & Casino

Casino Jazz at El Diria Hotel Tamarindo

Tambor Puntarenas

Barceló Playa Tambor Resort & Casino

If you like wine, fine women, song, AND gambling, Costa Rica nightlife might be just what the doctor ordered!

Welcome to the world of Costa Rica tourism.