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Best Casinos in New Mexico

best new mexico casinosCasinos in New Mexico are pretty popular, so much so that the horse racing scene has seen a decline since the introduction of these venues. If casinos don’t make you all that excited, there are loads of other gambling options available to US players living in the state, including lottery games, charity games, daily fantasy sports betting and horse racing. With so much available to players, the only thing they’ll be struggling with is picking which option to go for first. If you would like to find out more about gambling in New Mexico, make sure to stick around to learn more about the state. Below we are about to go through all you need to know about gambling in the Land of Enchantment, including a brief look at their gambling laws, the types of gambling available and the locations of Indian casinos. So, what are you waiting for? Begin an exciting gambling journey in the great state of New Mexico today!

Top Online Casinos in NM



Online casinoWelcome BonusPayoutRatingVisit Site
High Country Casino
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Royal Ace Casino
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New Mexico Gambling Laws

Gambling Laws in New Mexico may seem a little confusing but it really isn’t. The law states that all forms of gambling are illegal unless exempted. Currently, that means the following for the listed industry role players:

  • Charity Gaming – non-profit organizations are allowed to hold fundraisers involving games of chance if they like. However, the prize may not exceed US$75 000 unless prior approval has been sought. In addition, organizations are only allowed to hold events four times a year. The only exemption from this requirement is senior citizen organizations that run weekly bingo evenings.
  • Horse Racing – in order to operate, a racetrack needs to be licensed by the state. Venues are allowed to offer some electronic casino games, such as slots and video poker. These venues are taxed quite heavily.
  • Indian Casinos – in order to operate, an Indian casino needs a gaming compact with the state government. Unlike in many other states, in New Mexico, these casinos are allowed to offer whatever games they like.gambling in new mexico

Types of Gambling in New Mexico

If you are looking to gamble in New Mexico but are not sure what is available to you, we have listed all of the available online and brick-and-mortar options available to you down below:

  • Horse Racing Betting – this form of betting is the oldest in the state of New Mexico. Off-track betting is allowed at licensed racetracks. These venues also offer players the chance to play slots and video poker games.
  • Indian Casinos – there are currently more than 20 Indian casinos operating in New Mexico. They offer players in NM access to all the most popular games including slots, video poker, craps, roulette, and blackjack, among others.
  • Lottery – the state does run its own lottery that sells tickets for keno-style and scratch card games.
  • Charity – these are games of chance (such as raffles or bingo) held by non-profit organizations with the aim of fundraising.
  • Daily Fantasy Sports – DFS sites claim that their games are skill-based rather than luck-based and as such do not count as gambling and the state has not contested this.
  • Online Casinos – while theoretically, off-track betting is the only legal form of online gambling listed in New Mexico state law, players are also able to gamble at the offshore casino and sports betting sites that accept US players. We recommend that players exercise caution while doing so though.

List of Indian Casinos in New Mexico

Looking to gamble at a good, old brick-and-mortar casino in New Mexico? Well, look no further than the options listed down below. You are sure to find one with a tailor-made experience for you!

Apache Nugget Casino –
Camel Rock Casino – Santa Fe17486A Co Rd.
Buffalo Thunder Resort – Santa Fe20 Buffalo Thunder
Casino Xpress – Casa BlancaI-40, Exit
Casino Apache – Mescalero25845
Dancing Eagle Casino – Casa Blanca167 Casa Blanca
Cities of Gold Casino – Santa Fe10-B Cities of Gold
Flowing Waters Casino – Waterflow2710
Fire Rock Casino – Church Rock249 Rte
Isleta Resort – Albuquerque11000 Broadway Blvd.
Inn of the Mountain Gods – Mescalero287 Carrizo Canyon
Nambe Falls Casino – Santa Fe17730
Kicks 66 – Santa Fe67 Ogo Wii
Ohkay Casino – San Juan Pablo68
Northern Edge Navajo Casino – Fruitland2752 Indian Service Road
Route 66 Casino – Albuquerque14500 Central Ave.
Palace West Casino – Isleta2
Sandia Resort and Casino – Albuquerque30 Rainbow
San Felipe Casino – San Felipe25 Hagen
Santa Claran Casino – Espanola460 N. Riverside
Santa Ana Star – Bernalillo54 Jemez Canyon Dam
Taos Mountain Casino – Taos700 Veterans
Sky City Casino – AcomaI-40 Exit
Wild Horse Casino – Dulce13603

Evolution of NM Casinos

New Mexico gambling only really began to see a push in the 1980s. Prior to the time period, only horse racing betting had been legal. However, when Texas legalized horse racing and tax revenues began to fall, NM lawmakers started pushing for more defined legislation on the industry that would recoup government gains in some way.

Following a successful campaign with a strong focus on defining gambling legislation, Governor Gary Johnson was voted into office in 1995. Johnson election led to the formation of gaming compacts with Indian tribes and the formation of the very first New Mexico casinos. In addition to the introduction of casinos, Johnson also spearheaded the formation of a state lottery, which officially launched in 1996.

Although racing tracks continue to be a source of entertainment for many gamblers, they are no longer the number one option for gamblers in New Mexico, despite also adding slots and video poker games to their repertoire. Today, they only form part of the thriving New Mexico gambling industry.

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New Mexico Casinos FAQs

What is the legal gambling age in New Mexico?

Players need to be 18 if they want to play the lottery or bet on horse racing but they need to be 21 if they want to play casino games. There is no age requirement attached to charity gambling.

Are casinos legal in New Mexico?

Yes, it is. In 1995, Governor Gary Johnson signed gaming compacts with Indian tribes to establish the state’s first casinos. Since then, casinos have mushroomed around the state.

Is online gambling legal in New Mexico?

Currently, the only form of legal online gambling is off-track betting. Outside of this, daily fantasy sports sites are also available in New Mexico because they are said to offer games of skill with no contest from the state government.

Is sports betting legal in New Mexico?

Some casinos across the state offer players the opportunity to place sports bets; however, sports betting online is illegal.

Does New Mexico have a lottery?

Yes, the New Mexico state lottery was established in 1995 and officially launched in 1996, with Governor Gary Johnson being the first player to buy a ticket.

What games can I play at New Mexico casinos?

A wide variety of games are available on offer at New Mexico casinos, including not only slots but a range of table games too. Some table games include roulette, blackjack, craps, poker and baccarat, among others.

What is the biggest casino in New Mexico?

According to a total number of games available, Sandia Resort and Casino is considered the largest casino in the state.

How many casinos are there in New Mexico?

This depends on how a person defines the word casino. If we’re looking at casinos in the traditional sense, there are 21 available across the state. However, if we define “casino” as a place that simply provides players with a place to play games of chance, there are 26 across the state, excluding the two race tracks that also offer slot games.

How many racetracks are there in New Mexico?

There are two registered race track and casino venues in New Mexico: Ruidoso Downs and Sunland Park. They offer players the chance to bet on horses as well as play some casino games at the same damn time.

Is charity gambling allowed in New Mexico?

Yes, charity gambling is legal in New Mexico but there are some strict laws surrounding such events to avoid scams. Firstly, a non-profit organization is only able to host four such events throughout the year and the total prize is not allowed to exceed US$75000 unless approval from the state is sought.

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