The term casino is usually conceived as a huge building that’s full of slot machines and table games. However, given the size differences of these buildings, the smaller ones would classify as a mini casino.

It is in fact quite common that these gambling establishments feature just a limited number of casino equipment. For instance, in a mini casino, you wouldn’t find restaurants or retail outlets like in the normal ones.

But the question is, how “mini” are these buildings? Is there actually any significant differences from the usual venues we know of? You’ll get to know soon!

Mini casino – main features

A mini casino, also known as a satellite casino, is actually not that different from one’s perception of a normal casino. Although they aren’t as huge as the regular ones, mini casinos are not just a small stall offering gambling services.

One of the mini casinos found in Pennsylvania, US.

The three main differences from the average type of casino include:

Fewer slot machines

Usually, an average casino complex fits between 1,500 and 3,000 slot machines. On the other hand, a mini casino would actually have a capacity of just around 500 slots.

Fewer table games

Similar to slot machines volume, in a mini casino there is less amount of table games compared to the average casino. In fact, only 20 to 30 table games can be held in a mini casino. In a regular casino, there could be even up to 100 table games.

Smaller physical presence

Obviously, with less equipment capacity, mini casino don’t actually require a huge building. Having said that, they are still huge complexes compared to conventional businesses. It’s just that they are not as big in size as the typical casino.

Mini casino – origins

This relatively new concept of casino actually originated in the US, more specifically in Pennsylvania. These smaller venues were approved by the Quacker State back in 2017.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board auctioned the rights to 10 new mini casinos at first. Then it announced winners for these rights throughout the period following the auction.

This gave already established casinos the opportunity to expand their gambling offerings further. Quite a good number of casinos are situated in Pennsylvania and this was seen as a good opportunity for expansion.

Although the concept of mini casinos didn’t spread throughout the US as fast as expected, they are slowly becoming more popular still.

Mini casino – a strategic location

Before a license for a mini casino is issued, there is a set of factors that need to be considered. However, the most important one would be the location of the new establishment.

First, authorities would look at the way the population of a particular area is served in terms of casino services. The idea behind this is for the mini casino to cover areas in between the bigger casinos.

In Pennsylvania, the legislature actually prohibits the opening of new casinos within 40 miles of existing establishments.

For areas with smaller populations, a mini casino would be ideal rather than a huge building for a big casino.

Perception of mini casinos

Even though the concept of mini casinos is still a new one, it is quite a well-perceived idea with the US states.

This concept is gaining more and more popularity since the gambling destinations in the US are no longer just Atlantic City and Las Vegas. Today, it is quite common to have casino establishments within almost every US state.

Pennsylvania (and not only) has the intention to keep on expanding its gambling industry and that is why mini casinos are seen as a good idea by states.


Ultimately, the only actual difference between the mini and the regular kind of casinos is the size of the operation. A mini casino offers 300 to 700 slot machines and 20 to 30 table games in contrary to 1,500 to 3,000 slots and 30 to 100 table games.

The Northeastern state of Pennsylvania is the only location in which one can find these mini casinos. However, with the amount of money raised by authorities in terms of licensing fee, it won’t take too long before other states will introduce these casinos as well.

While we’re discussing casinos, here’s a detailed review of one of the top casinos in the industry – Mr Green Casino