Circus Circus is an MGM Resorts property located on the north end of the Las Vegas Strip. It opened on October 18, 1968. After multiple expansions, the hotel hosts 3,773. It is the only resort on the Las Vegas Strip that is truly family friendly. This is because it hosts the Adventuredome, which is an indoor amusement park.
Adventuredome offers roller coasters, a Ferris wheel, as well as numerous other rides that kids of all ages will enjoy. There is also an arcade, midway and circus acts that are performed right above the casino floor.
The casino floor has two separate areas. All of the table games are located toward the front of the property by the valet. Most of the tables at Circus Circus are blackjack, although there are also some Pai Gow Poker, baccarat, craps, roulette and Three Card Poker tables.
Circus Circus Tables and Games
There are 29 blackjack tables at Circus Circus. These are spread across three game formats. All blackjack games at Circus Circus hit soft 17. There is no high limit salon at Circus Circus.
The only playable blackjack game at Circus Circus is the double deck. There are two tables of this format. The bet range is $25 to $1,000. Players may double down before and after splitting. The house edge is 0.4%.
The other two blackjack games at Circus Circus pay 6-5 on a natural. There are 25 of these tables. One is a single deck blackjack game where players can only double down on 10 and 11 and not after splitting. The other is an eight-deck shoe where players can double down on any two cards, before and after splitting. A handful of these eight-deck games use continuous shuffle machines. The bet limits for both games is $5 to $500. The single deck house edge is 1.97%. The eight-deck edge is 2.01%.
There are three video blackjack machines at Slots A Fun. This is a video-only casino connected to Circus Circus. These video blackjack games are better than anything you will find at Circus Circus. The bet limits are $1 to $300. Players may double down on any two cards and after splitting. Surrender is also available. The dealer stands on all 17’s. The game even takes the Circus players card, adding 0.1% to the return. Including the players card, these video blackjack games have a house hold of 0.27%. That is equivalent to a standard $100 high limit shoe game at other casinos.
Circus Players Club for Frequent Blackjack Players
Circus Circus is owned by MGM Resorts but the typical MLife players club is not used here. MGM Resorts wants to separate its core Las Vegas casinos from Circus Circus. This may make it easier to sell one day as the player list would be easy to include.
The Circus players club is used at Circus Circus. The only other property it is available at is Slots A Fun, which is connected to Circus Circus by a short covered walkway. The two casinos are essentially the same property.
It is hard to receive any sort of comps for blackjack action at Circus Circus. The $25 double deck game should return free rooms to players that give two or three hours of action in a day. The 6-5 tables aren’t worth playing to receive comps. Serious players may not consider the rooms at Circus Circus worthy of their play unless visiting with kids.
Circus Circus is much different than other MGM Resorts casinos because it uses its own players club. Unlike the other lower end MGM casinos, you cannot earn offers or comps at other casinos in the system by playing at Circus Circus. The three great video blackjack machines at Slots A Fun are very unusual for the Las Vegas Strip. Unfortunately, that is all that is great about Circus Circus as its entire lower limit live blackjack has a 2% house edge.
The Inside View
Circus Circus is a place you take the family for a Las Vegas vacation. There is plenty for the kids to do while mom and dad gamble. It is not a place that a serious gambler should ever choose to play unless forced to do so. The edge on the sub-$25 blackjack games is 2%. The only playable live game is the double deck. It has a $25 minimum bet and still hits soft 17. This makes the house edge 0.4%.
The one highlight is the video blackjack at Slots A Fun. This is where any serious player should go to play blackjack. Comps are earned much faster on the video blackjack games and the house edge is much lower. Even the $25 player should venture over there.
Circus Circus slashed its blackjack payouts shortly after Riviera closed in May 2015. Circus Circus no longer has any casino within walking distance to compete with. Its hotel guests are stuck there. The closest casino to walk to is SLS Las Vegas, about 10 minutes away. It is worth the walk for serious players as it has $10 blackjack that pays 3-2 on a natural, as well as stand on 17 games for high limit players.