Golden Riviera: Does The Sun Always Shine on This Casino?
Finding a great casino is difficult at the best of times. If you’re an Aussie, it’s a step harder still. Casinos that aim at the Australian market are a little tougher to find, especially if you’re looking for something that competes with the bigger European and UK brands. Fortunately, that’s exactly what I found at Golden Riviera.
I’ve played at a lot of casino, too many to remember in fact. But those few that stick out usually do so because they have great games, impressive support, and just a general easy going attitude to playing there. I like playing without the hassles of dealing with awkward support staff, and without compatibility issues across devices – the little things that can make a big difference to your gaming experience. That’s in large part why I’ve returned to play here time after time.
Golden Riviera is one of Australia’s leading online casinos. It’s hugely credible, very popular, and building an increasing profile as being the best place to play if you’re an Aussie. They are licensed in Malta by the Malta Gaming Authority – one of the world’s leading centres for gambling regulation. This means that you know you’re getting fair treatment when you play here, so you can game with confidence.
Of course, because this casino aims at Australians, there are other countries that won’t be accepted, according to the terms of their licensing. These include South Africa, USA, Belgium, Bulgaria, UK, France, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy and Spain. You can check out the full restricted countries list to confirm whether you can play, or check out others like Bovada (especially for US players) or Betway if you’re not able to open an account here.
This is a safe, fun casino with a good selection of games, some strong bonuses and decent payout rates. But when it comes to the user experience, does Golden Riviera make the grade?
The user experience at Golden Riviera is something that I’ve always found particularly attractive. As a starting point, this isn’t an ugly casino – the graphics channel luxury, and it almost feels like you’re playing at a land based casino, given the opulent stylings and visuals. I like that a lot – to me, it shows that this is a casino that takes its mission pretty seriously.
The tag line is ‘Elegance in Gaming’, and you can see they mean it. But this isn’t just about the graphics. The whole package is good – including customer support and banking methods.
The support team are accessible virtually around the clock, and I’ve always found them to be quick to answer support requests. You can hit them up on live chat, which is the most convenient way to contact them, or pick up the phone if you prefer to speak to a real person. Of course, you can also send them an email, and they’re usually pretty speedy to reply.
Banking, in terms of deposits and withdrawals, is also pretty straightforward. I’ll usually use Skrill or NETELLER when I’m depositing so I can withdraw through the same method, but there are a huge number of different payment methods that allow this. The complete list includes Bank Transfers, ecoPayz, EntroPay, Maestro, MasterCard, NETELLER, PaySpark, Skrill, UseMyFunds, Visa, Visa Debit, Visa Electron, Clickandbuy and WebMoney.
You can also deposit through Citadel, InstaDebit, paysafecard, Poli and Ticket Premium, though you will find you’re not able to withdraw through these payment methods.
There is a minimum deposit value of $10 in force, and the minimum withdrawal amount you can request is $20. You’re also subject to a maximum withdrawal of $4,000 per week, but this shouldn’t be a problem unless you hit a major jackpot or you’re a particularly high roller. If this does affect you, it’s no problem to max out your withdrawal limit week after week until you’ve claimed the total of your withdrawal.
Game Types & Selection
Golden Riviera is predominantly a Microgaming casino, which means it’s home to a fantastic selection of games. There are over 600 games in the download lobby to choose from, or you can play a slightly restricted selection of 300+ Flash games in the Instant Play casino.
Because the games have been developed by Microgaming, expect a number of your favourite titles to feature heavily – I’m talking about games like Thunderstruck II, Immortal Romance and Jurassic Park, amongst an impressive lineup of table games and more. While progressive jackpots from the likes of Mega Moolah complete an impressive lineup, this isn’t just about pokies.
You’ll also find a wide range of casino favourites in this huge catalogue of games, and you can play in both free and real play modes to suit. Red Dog and Sic Bo are nice additions, along with the big selection of video poker games on offer, including Deuces Wild, Bonus Poker and my personal favourite, Joker Poker.
You’ll need deep pockets or a lot of luck to play them all for money, but in my experience the payouts here have been pretty decent too. What’s not to like?
The welcome bonus package on offer at Golden Riviera is particularly strong, and one of the main reasons it’s easy to recommend this casino to others. Depending on your deposits, you can reach a maximum of $1,400 in free, deposit bonuses across the first three deposits you make. With the first deposit, you also pick up 30 free spins for the Game of Thrones slot, one of my favourite games anyway – so this is a major win.
The bonus is paid at 100% up to $150, 25% up to $500, and then 50% up to $750 respectively. You’ll also get your free spins, plus 250 loyalty points just for getting started. Not a bad deal, all in.
Of course, any bonus offer is only as good as its wagering requirements. The general playthrough requirement is 40x for most bonuses, but this limit is increased to 50x and 100 bets on your first deposit. This is a little high, but it’s within an acceptable range for me – I’m sure most players would agree. This does mean that you need to play sensibly if you’re hoping to withdraw your bonus, but it can be done.
The deposit bonuses here aren’t a one-time thing. In addition to the 3-tier deposit bonus welcome package, there are also benefits from collecting loyalty points, plus a range of ongoing promotions and tournaments that will be sure to keep you busy.
|First Deposit||100%||$ 150||50x||–||Play now!|
|2nd Deposit Bonus||25%||$ 500||40x||–||Play now!|
|3rd Deposit Bonus||50%||$ 750||40x||–||Play now!|
Loyalty, VIP and Online Casino Promotions
Golden Riviera is all about offering players first-rate hospitality, and this is reflected throughout their bonus structure and the ongoing promotions and loyalty scheme they operate. Every game you play earns loyalty points, and depending on the number of loyalty points you’ve got saved up, you can trade these in for a range of exclusive bonuses and rewards.
As you move through the loyalty tiers from the Green Lounge to Silver, Gold, and finally the Platinum Lounge, you also increase the rate at which you collect new points, from 1 point per $10, up to 2 points per $10 – so essentially, the more you play, the quicker you are to pick up these loyalty bonuses. I haven’t played here enough to reach the Platinum level yet, but I’m already feeling the benefits of picking up points at a higher pace.
The most common way people choose to play Golden Riviera on desktop is through the download software, which is quick to download and easy to install. The lobby is pretty quick too, so I don’t envisage you’d have any problems going down this route.
There’s also a dedicated mobile casino for mobile users, which is open to players on any device or tablet. There are a slightly smaller range of games on offer through the mobile casino, but they are still incredibly high quality and fun to play. And without the usual compatibility nonsense, you can get off to a flying start on any device or operating system.
Golden Riviera is safe to play at, and a fun casino that appreciates the need to treat its players well. You won’t feel disappointed by the games, the technology or the service on offer here. It starts with the generous bonus, even if the playthrough terms are a little on the high side for the first deposit, and ends up with withdrawals that are processed smoothly and effortlessly. The terms and conditions on the whole are pretty fair, and I’ve personally never had any problems playing here.
If you’re in Australia and you want a cracking gaming experience, whether on pokies or just your standard lineup of table games, this is probably the casino for you.