Arts + Entertainment

Brighton Arcade: one of life’s guilty pleasures!

Brighton…. what’s not to adore about this beloved seaside town, this jewel of Sussex? It’s got it all really, from high culture and great dining to an excellent club scene and of course a fantastic beach. There’s something it offers though which is for many rather a guilty pleasure… the arcade.

Brighton’s arcade scene, stretching dramatically out into the sea on the historic pier (grade II listed as a matter of fact) is unashamedly tacky. Yes, there’s no denying it! But that’s all part of its charm. Nobody could argue that the pier offers a rarefied experience but that’s not the point of it. Life is about balance, the high and the low, the rough and the smooth, and there’s something extremely pleasurable about indulging in “naughty” fried food, consuming unhealthy amounts of sugar via donuts and candyfloss, larking about on shoot ‘em up arcade games and trying your luck on the fruit machines.


Look, you can go to the museum for your dose of culture- it’s got some great art, some thought-provoking exhibitions and is situated next to the Royal Pavilion- a flaneur’s dream; but when you’ve done that you can go and treat yourself to some beautifully fresh fish and chips and let your hair down on the seafront.

A word to the wise: get your eye in before you enter so you’re ready for the pace. InterCasino UK has loads of online slots for your phone so you can warm up in advance as the noise and excitement levels in the arcade can get pretty intense sometimes! Play on the train down and you’ll be well away when you arrive.

Another great tip is to start small and work up to the big leagues…. Play for those novelty keyrings and the big soft toys with the electric claw first of all. Then, as your adrenalin gets pumping, move over to those tantalising coin-drop machines, you know the kind with the ever-moving shelf that’s apparently overflowing with two penny pieces? After a few rounds of this you’ll be ready for “the fruities” so gather your copper winnings and move confidently into the over-18s only zone. Now, it’s time to align that spinning fruit!


Another word to the wise: don’t spend too long in here! A few hours are probably the ideal session length. Why? Well because there’s something quite surreal about this sort of atmosphere that really gets to your head if you spend much longer in it than that. There’s just something unnerving about all those blinking lights and funny, quirky little sounds that are on a loop going round and round and round. It’s likely to leave you feeling dazed and confused. The good thing is that if you do exceed the ideal dose of the British arcade experience, you can take a refreshing plunge in the sea- an equally British sort of experience, though this time more in the hearty line of country than the sugar-fuelled spinning fruit phenomenon!

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