HollywoodBets Ireland Review
Irish sports fans have plenty of betting sites to pick from, with Hollywoodbets one of the many different operators that are jostling for their attention in a crowded market.
Hollywoodbets started life in South Africa, where it is one of the top names in the industry, and Ireland is one of the few other international markets in which the site is available to join.
Also running in the United Kingdom, as well as in Mozambique, Hollywoodbets combines a sportsbook site with an online casino, as is the case with a lot of operators these days.
Best odds guaranteed for racing is among the top promotions at Hollywoodbets, while Irish players can get a €5 free bet when they successfully submit their KYC verification documents.
Those without much knowledge of Hollywoodbets will want to know more about the site's history and reputation, as well as the range of casino games that are available to try out here.
Our complete review of Hollywoodbets for Irish players has all the details - so read on.
The history of Hollywoodbets can be traced back all the way to 1986. The sports betting site actually started life in South Africa as a publishing company, Winning Form, which printed racecards. Winning Form retains the responsibility for publishing race cards in South Africa.
The first Hollywoodbets betting shop opened its doors in the city of Durban in 2000, the same place where its flagship store is now located. There are now dozens of Hollywoodbets shops in South Africa, as well as a couple in Mozambique, but its focus is increasingly placed online.
Ireland was one of the first international markets to be targeted by Hollywoodbets, which is part of the Hollywood Group. In Ireland, Hollywoodbets is licensed and regulated by the Irish Revenue Commissioner, which should assure potential players that it is a safe site to use.
Hollywoodbets launched in Ireland in November 2018 - with its betting licence having been issued by the Isle of Man - while its UK-based site followed just a few months later. To bolster its reputation and public profile in the UK and Ireland, Hollywoodbets has followed in the footsteps of a lot of other sports betting sites in using big-name partnerships and sponsorship deals.
Cricketing icon Kevin Pietersen is among the sporting stars to have teamed up with Hollywoodbets, which has also had its name adorned on the shirts of London-based football team Brentford. Furthermore, Hollywoodbets is the title sponsor of the SAFA National Women's Soccer League in South Africa, as well as lending its name to the Dolphins cricket team in SA.
In 2020, Hollywoodbets also announced that the firm would be sponsoring Ireland's only all-weather racetrack in Dundalk, following deals for the Greyville and Scottsville racetracks.
Hollywoodbets Sportsbook Review
Hollywoodbets has extremely close links to the horse racing industry, with a number of key sponsorships, so it is no surprise the sport of kings dominates its sportsbook in Ireland. Users logging into the site for the first time will be presented with all the day's big races, with meetings from Ireland, the UK and South Africa all available to bet on with Hollywoodbets.
The site also has a top horse racing promotion in the form of its best odds guaranteed offer, which covers all UK, Irish and South African racing as long as bets have been placed on or after 09:00 on the day of the given race. Hollywoodbets also has a free-to-play horse racing tipping competition that gives customers in Ireland the opportunity to play for a €300 prize pool. Racing fans will also enjoy the fact that the Hollywoodbets blog has tips and analysis to check out too.
That is only the start of the promotions at Hollywoodbets, which offers those who back a winner with a minimum stake of €10) at odds of 4/1 or bigger at selected Dundalk meetings a €5 free bet. Another €5 free bet is offered for users who bet on selected Irish competitors, teams and runners in specified markets on the site, while a bonus of up to 30% on accumulators is up for grabs with the Acca Bonus promotion at Hollywoodbets, which also has acca insurance.
Away from racing, Hollywoodbets is strong for sports such as football, tennis, golf and rugby, with esports betting having also been added to the site. Users will be able to find esports betting markets for the likes of Dota 2, CS:GO, Overwatch, StarCraft II and many more as well. Virtual sports has its own section on the Hollywoodbets sportsbook in Ireland too. Tennis, football and racing all are offered with virtual sports starting every couple of minutes on the site.
One thing missing at Hollywoodbets is a big welcome bonus, which might make it hard for the site to compete with some of the other top operators in Ireland. However, Irish players can get a €5 free bet when they successfully submit their KYC verification documents and another €5 free bet is up for grabs for those users who enter the site's Punters Challenge racing promotion.
Live in-play betting continues to get more popular in Ireland, with Hollywoodbets a solid choice of online bookmaker for these markets. Plenty of different markets can be used live in-play but the view offered for live sports is a little basic compared to the wealth of data and statistics that are often offered by other operators for their in-play products. There is a multi-view option which is handy for those who want to keep an eye on a few different live sporting events at once.
Irish sports fans who are seeking the best betting odds in the business will find Hollywoodbets is usually somewhere in the middle of the pack. For racing, there is good value up for grabs as a result of the best odds guaranteed deal. Other sports like football do not have bad value at all on the Hollywoodbets site but neither does this site rank at the top of the tree when it comes to odds.
All in all, for racing Hollywoodbets, is among the best betting sites in Ireland, but the sportsbook is a little more mediocre when it comes to other options, though people interested in esports betting will be happy to see such a great range of options to pick from as well.
Hollywoodbets Online Casino Review
Many Irish sportsbook sites also have an online casino these days, with Hollywoodbets among them. The online casino section of the Hollywoodbets site has a solid range of games to pick from including slots, scratch cards and table games, plus poker and other live casino games.
The live casino is likely to be the first port of call for many users given this is the closest to a real-life casino experience that people can find online in Ireland. At Hollywoodbets, the live casino has plenty of baccarat, blackjack, roulette and poker games with titles from Bet Games, Vision Games and BetConstruct among those available to play on the site. Wheel of Fortune is available and there is even a live casino game for rock, paper, scissors. However, some top live casino games such as Monopoly and Deal or No Deal are not currently available on this site.
Slots are how most online casinos make the majority of their money, so it is no surprise this is such a major focus for Hollywoodbets. Again, the selection is decent with a number of different game providers featured on the site.
However, just as there are no Evolution Gaming titles at the Hollywoodbets live casino, slots from the likes of NetEnt, Microgaming and Play'n GO are not currently offered on the site, which feels like it will be an important omission for a lot of users.
Leap Gaming, Edge Gaming, 1X2 Network, Realistic Games and Wazdan games are offered but famous titles such as Starburst, Gonzo's Quest and Book of Dead are all missing.
Megaways slots are available and they are likely to be some of the most popular games for those hunting for a big win at the Hollywoodbets casino. All average percentages are published clearly on the Hollywoodbets casino site too, making it easy to find top value games.
Return to player can be anything from around 95% (the Tom Horn slot Sky Barons) all the way up to 98 per cent (Star Fortune by BF Games). RTP for blackjack is a whopping 99.52%.
Special casino promotions can be claimed at the Hollywoodbets site as well. New players who sign up for an account then deposit and stake €10 on the Larry the Leprechaun online slot game will receive 30 free spins to get them up and running. A weekly refund of 10% on any losses from slots is also credited back to your Hollywoodbets casino accounts. This is paid as cash rather than bonus money which would typically be subject to wagering requirements.
Like most online casinos, there are various controls at Hollywoodbets that allow players to keep their spending in check. Deposit limits can be set for each day, week or month, while the amount of time spent playing casino games can also be monitored closely by users by setting up a reality check on their account. Self-exclusion options such as time outs are offered too.
One of the best things about the Hollywoodbets casino site in Ireland is that all the games have been optimised for mobile play. With many people in Ireland now preferring to use a handheld device to play games such as slots, this is a big tick in the box for the online casino. Let's take a deeper look at the Hollywoodbets mobile betting site in the next part of our complete review.
Hollywoodbets Mobile Betting Site Review
Using mobile sites for betting and casino games continue to grow in popularity. Being able to play games like poker on a handheld device like a tablet, or use a smartphone to place live in-play wagers, is a must for a lot of people in Ireland these days.
The Hollywoodbets mobile betting site will therefore be a popular place to go for many users. The site has a clear layout with tabs for racing, sport, promotions and casino at the top. This makes navigation fairly simple with the day's racecards located in a prominent position.
Finding live in-play betting markets is a bit more of a challenge than on most mobile betting sites, though. They can be found through a menu button in the top-right corner, but it is not immediately obvious where users of the site will be able to select live in-play options.
As mentioned above, all casino games have been optimised for mobile play at Hollywoodbets. This means they will work just as well on a smartphone or a tablet as they do on a laptop or a desktop PC, with fast loading times and all of their graphics looking spot-on as a result.
Customer service is also accessible through the Hollywoodbets mobile betting site. As is the case on the desktop site, there is a yellow live chat icon in the bottom-left corner of the screen.
While the Hollywoodbets mobile betting site is very user-friendly, the operator is yet to come up with a mobile betting app that can be used by Irish players. Hollywoodbets does have a mobile app in South Africa, so it stands to reason that this app could also be rolled out in Ireland in the future.