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What will you think when you hear the name Casino Royale? For certain many will come to mind the famous movie "Casino Royale" from the Saga of James Bond.

But the article will focus on another institution. It also provided services in the field of gambling but did not have an exact address. Probably, you know we're going to be talking about a floating casino. The main character of the article will be the famous ship Casino Royale, plying along the coast of Florida.

In the past

The ship was built in Florida in 1978. It's three-decker with the vessel more than fifty meters long and has a displacement of one thousand three hundred tons.

Casino Royale was originally intended to take clients into international waters, outside of the laws of the United States governing gambling. You need to move away from the shore for at least three nautical miles. Outside American jurisdiction, passengers could safely indulge in gambling entertainment.

Three decks of Casino Royale housed slot machines of different types, as well as several dozen tables for roulette and card games. The casino occupied more than five hundred and fifty square meters. The upper level was reserved for the observation deck and recreation area.

In the early 2000s, Casino Royale plied The Gulf of Mexico. Its owners regularly broke the law by allowing customers to play until the ship departs three nautical miles from the shore. As a result, they arrested him, took away his license and put him on trial.

In the following years, the ship changed owners several times. As a rule, the owners each time renamed it, trying to lure new clients. It was called by different names:

  • Diamond Royale,
  • The Escapade
  • Roayle and other names.

Tellingly, all the owners somehow violated the law, as the police quickly learned. That's why Casino Royale has often gone from hand to hand.


In 2014, it was put on a sandbank. Passengers were forced to spend hours on board waiting for help. The coast guard had to save them. They tried to tow the ship to shore, but the cables snapped. Because of the low tide, the ship is firmly stuck in the sand, and it could not even just move from place.

The only way to get on board was by helicopter. So as no one from passengers or crew Casino Royale not required urgent aid, the evacuation was postponed until morning.

With the onset of daylight people removed from the ship. The reduced load and the raised water level allowed to transport ship to port.

The captain was suspended until the investigation, but he was later found not guilty of the incident.

Later it turned out that all night customers played cards and on slot machines, though the ship was only two miles from the shore. But considering the situation, the authorities did not initiate a case of violation of gambling legislation.

Soon the story was hushed up, and Casino Royale continued to work.

A year later, the ship ran aground again. This time the captain didn't rush to call the coast guard. Members of the team assured that they are only a little caught the bottom of the shoal and did not stop for a second. Passengers said that the ship was motionless for two hours.

After that, the coast guard took away Casino Royale certificate of inspection. This meant that the ship had no right to put to sea. Since then, it has been rusting in port, moored.

The owners tried to sell Casino Royale for four million dollars, but no one wanted to buy it.

The validity of the gambling license, which regulated the activities of the Casino Royale, expired in 2015.

The only time the ship weighed anchor was in 2016. Authorities forced the owners of the vessel to move it due to the threats that carried approaching hurricane Matthew. Then it was transported from South Carolina to Georgia.

For the time being

The current owners of Casino Royale do not lose heart and periodically make official statements, claiming that they are going to repair ship and re-send it on cruises.

In fact, no one is engaged in the ship. It's in port, isn't it" its only visitors are urban photographers and fans of abandoned buildings. They sneak aboard to take pictures in the abandoned rooms where there are still gaming tables and other casino equipment, covered with a thick layer of dust. In the halls, you can even find chips scattered around the floor.

Given the current trends in the development of gambling in The USA, it hardly makes sense to restore the work of Casino Royale in the former format. Now land-based casinos operate in most states, so the demand for floating gambling houses is not as high as before.

What would you do with Casino Royale if it became your property?

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