Cuban Dominoes: From Havana to the World

Cuban Dominoes: From Havana to the World

Cuba may not be a famous location for popular games like poker, blackjack, baccarat, etc., but some options are peculiar to the country. An example is the Cuban dominoes, sometimes called “Dominó Cubano” or simply “Dominoes.” The game is a favorite at bars, parks, cafes, and homes. Many people regardless of age, social status, or background, love the game and the fun it brings.

In this casino news, we’ll discuss the history of Cuban dominoes and the famous slang used when the natives play them.

Cuban Dominoes: Gaming, Strategy and Mojitos!

The Cuban Dominoes is a classic draw-styled game widely played with a double nine (55-piece tiles) or set of 28 rectangular tiles in certain areas. Manufacturers typically make the dominoes from wood or plastic and divide them into two squares, marked by dots representing numbers zero to six.

The game is often played by two teams of two players each. The objective is for a team to be the first to play all its tiles by matching the number of dots on the ends of the tiles already played on the table. 

The Cuban Dominoes game is believed to have originated from the 13th-century Song dynasty in China but was brought to the Caribbean by European colonizers. Since then, dominoes have found a home in Cuba, where it has been cherished and played as a common pastime.

It is common to see this game played at parks, and even today, Cuban dominoes are played in the United States at the Maximo Gomez Domino Park on Calle Ocho in Miami. Regular visits are the “Los Veteranos” — older Cuban gentlemen.

Today, we have variations of Cuban dominoes, such as the Domino QQ Game (Qiu Qiu), which involves players using 28 double-six dominoes.

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Understanding Tiles Appeal

When learning how to play dominoes many find the game enticing, because of the social interaction and relaxation it brings to the table. Let’s review other reasons why the game is so attractive.

Unique and simple gameplay

The game is distinctively played with a double-nine or double-six set of tiles shared among two teams of two players, except when you play it at an online casino setting, where you play virtually by yourself. Teammates often sit across each other to exhaust their tiles first, making it a fun challenge.

You can learn to play table games like domino if you follow our online casino guides section.

Communal bonding

Cuban Dominoes is a social game. Many love to watch partners coordinate and communicate in a way that complements each other. While walking the streets of Cuba, it’s common to hear the click-clack sound of dominoes and feel the joy as the people watch, argue, and laugh. 

The use of slangs 

Like in many casino games, Cuban dominoes’ players often use a variety of colorful slang and expressions, adding flair and humor to the game.

Dotting the I’s and Crossing the T’s – Using Cuban Dominoes Slang

Most casino game types have peculiar terms, but in Cuban Dominoes, slang reigns. Below are some of the popular ones.

“¡Choca esa!”
Encouragement to slam down a domino with enthusiasm.

“A caballo regalado no se le mira el colmillo”
It means “don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.” It encourages players to accept a beneficial move without overthinking it.

“Meterle la pata al toro”
This means “to put the leg on the bull.” It concerns making a mistake in the game.

“Machucar”
To win a game decisively, a player could yell the “te machuco” (“I’ll crush you!”).

“Jugar al contra”
Playing against the dominant player or team deliberately.

“Dar agua al domino”
Refers to mixing and shuffling the domino set at the end of the game.

“La capicúa”
Describes when the last domino can be played on either end of the game.

“Bota gorda”
Describes a player who always plays their highest-numbered dominoes first, typically a beginner.

“Voy a ponerla fresca”
Said when introducing a number that hasn’t been played yet.

“Estoy gordo”
Used when a player has lots of high-number domino tiles.

“Estoy en la playa”
Used when a player has lots of low-number dominoes.

“Cogí letras en vez de números”
Said when a player needs to pass because of the absence of corresponding dominoes.

Cafecito Breaks and Domino Battles

Cuban dominoes isn’t just a game; it’s a way for people in Cuba to come together, have fun, and build friendships. It’s been around for a long time and is still loved today because it reflects the spirit of Cuban life and community.

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